How Much Does It Cost To Paint A 2 Story House Exterior? (2023 Estimates)

Last Updated On September 22, 2023

Are you wondering how much it costs to paint a 2 story house exterior?

You’ve come to the right place!

In this guide, you’ll learn:

  • The typical cost of DIY painting a 2 story house exterior
  • How to save money when painting a 2 story house exterior
  • How much it usually costs to hire a professional vs do it yourself for a 2 story house exterior
  • The estimated cost of labor and supplies to paint a 2 story house exterior

And much more!

How Much Does It Cost To Paint A House Interior? (2020 Estimates)

So, if you want to learn how much you should plan on spending to get your 2 story house exterior painted, then keep reading for all our tips and insights below!

Psst! Are you looking to paint you're home's interior instead?

Check Out Our Guide On That Here: How Much Does It Cost To Paint A Home's Interior?

How Much Does Exterior House Painting Cost For A 2 story house exterior?

The price depends on whether you do the job yourself, or if you hire the job out to a handyman or professional. 

We recommend that if you do hire out the work, contract a licensed professional that has the experience and is insured for the job.

Painting a 2 story house consists of setting up ladders and even scaffolding to reach higher heights. 

And more, the number of stories the house has completely changed the price range of the project, especially when it comes to hiring the pros. Any house that has more than one story is going to be more expensive.

Average Cost To Paint a 2 story house exterior If You Do It Yourself?

Painting costs time and money when DIYing, so before you suit up in your paint clothes, make sure you have the time to get the job done. 

Here are the tools and equipment necessary to repaint a 2-story house:

  • Paint

You're going to want exterior paint that is designed for the surface you are painting.

To find great paint options, all you have to do is a quick search on Amazon or Google. Something like 'paint for aluminum siding' or 'paint for vinyl siding' will work. 

If it's concrete you can use exterior paint for masonry and brick.

  • Ladders/scaffolding

Ladders are probably the most expensive necessity in painting a 2 story house exterior.

And more than a ladder, you'll need 2 ladders with a plank and jack running across the middle to make the job 10x easier(another reason why you might want to hire a pro)

  • Masker/masking materials

Using a paint masker allows you to cover up surfaces like windows, soffit/fascia, and undesired painting surfaces quickly and easily. 

Tip: Set up a scaffold/plank, and use a paint masker with 24-inch film to cover up the soffit and fascia when painting.

  • Paint sprayer

We highly recommend using a paint sprayer when painting your exterior, as it will save you so much time plus the paint job will turn out better.

There are plenty of inexpensive handheld HVLP paint sprayers online that you can purchase off websites like Amazon that will allow you to paint your house up in a flash.

  • Roller/brushes(optional)

It will take you a lot longer to paint your 2 story house with a roller and brush, and we recommend it.

That doesn't mean you can't knock out a quick roller job on a small two-story house. 

  • Safety equipment

Keeping yourself safe is the top priority. 

Safety measures like nitrile gloves, safety glasses, and cotton mask/respirator should be used when painting to reduce the risk of injury and future health issues.

  • Caulk

Caulking parts like window trim is especially necessary for exterior paint jobs because it helps keep the water and humidity out.

Take a close look at the house, and identify areas that will look and function better with a bit of sealant.

  • Sandpaper/Sanding pole

Sandpaper isn't always necessary on exterior painting projects, but if you are painting something like wood siding that could use a smoother touch, by all means, rub some sandpaper over it before you paint up.

  • Power washer

It's a good move to power wash the exterior surface before painting because scrubbing off dirt, loose paint, insects, and other debris that will get in the way of a smooth painting job.

Power washing might seem time-consuming, but if you have peeling paint or mildew on the outside of your home, this will ensure that your fresh coat of paint will be durable.

  • Patching materials

Not every job has the perfect surface to paint on. If there are broken pieces of siding material, you'll need the replacement to materials to replace before painting. 

Otherwise, you will have to go back replaced siding materials and touch it up later which doesn't always pan out nicely.

Average Cost To Paint The Exterior Of Your Home If You Hire a Professional Company?

The nation-wide average cost for painting homes ranges between $1,700-$3,700.

We're going to guess painting a 2-story house is on the higher end price range because it involves more paint, more risk, and more time when compared to a one-story house. 

Different contractors will have different prices, and it's your job to decide which one to hire. 

Some painters might be expensive, but with good reason because they do 5-star work.

Other painters with poor reviews might come to your house and take 5 weeks to paint a very slow and bad paint job. 

Read online reviews first before getting an estimate from a painting company. 

We recommend higher-rated companies over the less qualified, but don't be afraid to give the underdogs a chance if they seem like a better and cheaper option!

Read our advice at the end of this article about saving money when painting.

How To Estimate The Cost To Paint a 2-story house exterior?

DIY Estimate

If you are feeling confident with a tape measure, you can measure the exterior of a house for square footage to get a good idea of how much paint you will need, supplies, etc. 

There are plenty of paint estimating tools online that will help you calculate how much paint you'll need based on the square footage of the job and how many windows there are. 

Just search for something like 'paint estimator' in your Google queue, and you'll find plenty of helpful tools.

  1. Find the square footage of the paint surface.
  2. Estimate tape and masking film needed
  3. Add in the labor costs

We also recommend a time frame where the job will be complete. 

Painting yourself can sometimes take longer than planned, but that doesn't mean you can't motivate yourself to paint the house in a week or even a few days.

Read More >> What Are The Best Gravity Feed Spray Guns To Use?

Typical Cost of Hiring A House Painter

A professional painter is going to measure your house, and give you a rough price according to how bad they want the job--painting contractors get busy sometimes, and not every job is a priority, especially if it is something like a 2-story house that is a higher risk job because of the necessary use of ladders/scaffolding.

So why are pro painted more expensive? To understand this, we need to break down added expenses:

Transportation to job

Driving the painting truck to the job costs money, and that adds up over time. 

From fuel costs to repairs, transportation is an expense for the painting contractor.


Licensed contractors have insurance, and it costs them upwards in the thousands per year. For this reason, they will add an extra profit to the cost of the paint job so they don't lose out.

Contractors also have to pay their workers' medical bills when they get injured, and painting a 2-story house has a lot more risk involved than painting a single room or a single-story structure. That's another added expense of doing business.

Quality of Paint Job

Not only to pro painters use high-quality paint, but they also do a better job. 

The best pro painters like to do two-tone paint jobs that require more masking, not to mention the fact that high-end painters will caulk and spackle every square inch of the project to make sure it comes out to 5-star quality---now that takes more time and effort.

  • Sale commission

Some painting contractors have designated salesmen that go around to bid all the jobs. This guy can make some serious extra cash when he bids the job extra high, so be aware of this when getting paint bids.

Tip: Read cost guides on the internet for additional help on your painting/repainting

Read More >> What Are The Best Exterior Primer Paints?

Cost To Paint Per Square Foot?

The equation for cost per square foot is the total cost of the project divided by the number of square feet.

No matter which way you think about it, you are going to have to pay for paint, prep, and labor. 

So here's a scenario:

Say we are painting a 1600 square foot surface. If every gallon of paint covers about 400 square feet, that means we'll likely need 4 gallons of primer + 4 or more gallons of paint to cover everything up.

If we pay $25 per gallon for paint, that means we'll be spending ~$200 on paint.

Now we are going to purchase 4 rolls of 24-inch masing film, 8 rolls of tape, and other miscellaneous prep items like spackle and caulk. We'll spend $100 on prepping materials.

We are hiring a neighbor who has his handyman license at a rate of $25/hour to save money but still with decent quality. Let's estimate that he will take 40 hours to complete the job. That's a generous $1000 on labor which is also economical for you because you saved 40 hours of your own time.

So, our total job cost is $1300, and our square footage is 1600 sq ft.

Total cost $1300 / 1600 square feet = .81 cents per square foot. 

You got off easy this time because pro painters charge anywhere from $1.50-$4.00 per square foot. 

Estimated Cost of Paint For Painting a 2-Story House?

The national average for painting a home exterior is between $1,700-$3,700 dollars, and it really just depends on the size of the home.

DIY Cost

There are many different factors to consider when calculating DIY costs. Here are a few:

  • Find the square footage 

Finding the square footage is easier than it might look; all you have to do is break the house into shapes when measuring, and then add them up after.

For example, a basic A-frame house has four sides, and two of them include triangular shapes where the gable meets at the top.

All you have to do is measure the triangular part of the roof separately to find its area. 

Here is a good educational link on finding the area of a triangle.

  • Amount of windows

The windows on your house can be subtracted from the square footage, and you'll want to take them into consideration when purchasing tape and other masking materials.

  • Tools 

Painting tools generally aren't very expensive, but they will add to the cost of your project fast if you don't have them.

Even if you are borrowing tools, it will still cost you time when chasing them all down.

  • Prep materials

You'll need everything from ladders to drop cloths and beyond when prepping an outdoor paint job. Plan on at least $100 dollars when purchasing all the prep materials.


You could technically hire a licensed and insured handyman for this project and make yourself the manager. 

Just add in the hourly rate of the handyman + the cost for the project to find a decent estimate.

Pro Cost

The pros will always give you a price that works for them, so don't expect anything too accurate. You can expect anywhere from $1/square foot all the way up to $4/square foot for big three-story jobs that are high risk to the painters.

Read More >> How Do You Paint Your Home's Exterior?

Did you know? Painting the average home exterior takes 3 to 4 days to paint with 2 to 3 people.

Estimated Cost of Labor For Painting a 2 Story House Exterior?

Paying for labor can go in a few different scenarios. We are going to break down the facts without sugar coating anything because we want you to have a good idea about how much this exterior paint job is going to cost.

  • Handyman

Hiring a licensed and insured handyman that is capable for the job is a good alternative to a painting contractor because he/she will be more satisfied with an hourly pay rate. 

  • DIY

Painting the job yourself will cost you time more than anything. 

  • Professional painters

Let the pros do what they do best: quality. Expect a higher price for the estimated pro cost, but also expect higher quality for curb appeal, and take this into consideration when looking to sell your home. 

We highly recommend the extra money for a pro company because a pro paint job will increase the value of your home.

How To Save Money When Painting  A 2 Story House Exterior?

Saving money is always top on the list, and spending money on quality is a law of nature.

Professional painters are obviously more expensive for house painting than if you were to do it yourself, but here are a few good tips to get the best price on your paint estimate:

  • Get multiple bids

Perhaps the most important move you should make when hiring pro painters is getting multiple bids from different companies to see what each one would cost.

Looking for pro painters in your area? Here are some good options.

  • Offer to help with job prep

In some cases, if you offer to help with prep work, the contractor will cut you some slack. 

  • Just do it yourself

For some, the best way to save money will be by painting the house themselves, and here at Pro Paint Corner we completely encourage this behavior. 

  • Paint-safe

Saving money also includes avoiding hospital bills. Educate yourself on themes like ladder safety

Questions? Ask a painter.

Here at Pro Paint Corner, our mission is to help you complete your paint job effectively. We are worried about you handling the job in a manner that is satisfactory to you.

Every painting situation is different. We hope this helped you on your 2 story house paint job! Enjoy!

Meet Your Pro Paint Corner Author

Ryan Nichols

Ryan Nichols

I first painted professionally in my late teens. I have painted everything from long military base walls to spraying cedar wood siding on cabins in the mountains of Utah. I am also an automotive technician with plenty of auto body and paint experience. In my spare time, I even enjoy artistic oil painting.

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Ryan Nichols

Ryan Nichols

I first painted professionally in my late teens. I have painted everything from long military base walls to spraying cedar wood siding on cabins in the mountains of Utah. I am also an automotive technician with plenty of auto body and paint experience. In my spare time, I even enjoy artistic oil painting.

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