Painting Help - Charging for non-paintable surfaces?

10 days ago

I received a quote for painting my new 5500 square foot home from the builder’s painter. I am using Aura paint from Benjamin Moore for walls and Regal Select for the ceilings. I received a price that states I have 26,000 square feet of walls and the charge was $1.75 per square foot. I was also charged $2.50 per linear foot for base boards and $140 per door. The total charge was $58,000. I went back and verified some of the measurements and noticed a couple things that bothered me.

  1. Bathrooms with all 4 walls completely tiled and just needing the ceiling painted were charged as if the tiled walls needed painting. (As an example just 54 sq ft of ceiling needs paint and the room was charged as 290 sq ft). The painters square footage calculation including every tiled surface in the house.
  2. I have expanses of modern windows that span from floor to ceiling (10’) and he charged me as if he was painting those windows. FYI there is no window trim.
  3. I have 44 windows and they were all included in the calculation and charged. No window trim. 3 car garage doors which do not need paint but were included and charged.
  4. He said he charges based on “living area” not actual painted surfaces. He said this is the way he has done it for 40 years. In my own work, I have adapted and changed and do not do the same things I have done 40 years ago.

He said what he was doing was industry standard? Is this correct?

I completely disagreed with him and told him if I have an entire room made of glass but just one wall needed painting, why would I pay for the total square footage of all that glass and the entire “living space”? He said it was to pay for plastic, masking tape, and time to protect the windows. I told him from my estimates he over charged by $1400 in just 2 rooms (48 areas total) by not excluding non-painted surfaces. He could take that money and buy plastic more than enough painters 0.31mil plastic @ $18 for 3,600 sq feet, and painters tape was small cost, naps were small cost, and so on. He said there was also wastage. Wastage in painting qualifying that much overage?

Please share your thoughts. Is this how it’s done? Am I off in thinking something just isn’t right?


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