The guidance on this site is based on our own analysis and is meant to help you identify options and narrow down your choices. We do not advise or tell you which product to buy; undertake your own due diligence before entering into any agreement. Read our full disclosure here.

Average Cost to Hire a Decorator in the UK (2024)

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Average Cost to Hire a Decorator UK

The average cost to hire a decorator in the UK is between £17 and £30 per hour in the UK, naturally depending on factors such as where you’re based and what you need done. This article will also give you some tips on how to save and the best places to find a decorator.

How much does a Painter/Decorator cost in the UK?

You can expect to pay in the range of £17 and £30 per hour to hire a decorator in the UK, our research in some of the UK’s most populated cities suggests. There are a number of different factors driving cost, such as the difficulty of the task and the materials required, but this should give you a rough idea of how much a decorator might quote you.

map showing the costs of hiring a decorator in the 20 most populated UK cities
decorator costs across the UK
CityCost of hiring a decorator per hour

There isn’t a clear geographical trend, but as is often the case people living in London can expect to pay more than any other region of the UK—almost double the amount of somebody needing a decorator in Sheffield. With rent being almost 65% cheaper in Sheffield than London, it isn’t all that surprising to see the cost of maintaining these apartments and houses follow suit.

How much you can expect to pay will vary depending on what you need done (and will also define exactly what you need—a general decorator, a painter, or perhaps someone more specialist like a carpenter or joiner). Either way, you’re likely to come across a few main methods of determining cost:

  • Per hour
  • Per day
  • Per M2 or per bedroom

Whether you’re hiring a larger business or more locally (which can help you save, covered more below) make sure that they’re appropriately insured by checking out our guide to painters and decorators insurance.

How much do Painting/Decorating tasks cost?

Painting an entire apartment or house will cost you in the range of £700-£1400, depending on the size of your residence and the number of rooms that require work. Smaller tasks, like tackling individual rooms, wallpapering or glossing start from just under £20 per hour or £20-30 per sq. m. of wall.

avg cost by house size of hiring a decorator
decorator costs by size of accomodation
House/apartment sizeCost to paintCost to decorateTime to complete paintingTime to complete decorating
1 bed£700£800-£1,5501 dayLess than 5 days
2 bed£1,000£1,550-£2,1001-2 daysLess than 7 days
3 bed£1,100£2,100-£3,1002 days6-8 days
4 bed£1,250£2,600-£3,6002-3 days7-10 days
5 bed£1,350£3,600-£4,2503-4 days10-14 days

This is by no means a be-all-end-all price list, but should give you a rough idea of what you can expect to pay. Read the next section to better understand why your quote might end up more than you anticipated, and have a look at our tips on saving.

You may only need a specific task completed, in which case your costs will naturally be much less. While every company is different, here’s a rough idea of how much you can expect to pay on a task-by-task basis.

avg cost per task of hiring a decorator
decorator costs by size of accomodation
Skirting boards£150
Window frames£175
Hallway, Landing & Stairs£600

Finally, if you’d like your walls wallpapered, you can expect to pay between £20-£40 per square metre. If you need wallpaper stripped, expect to pay more, in the range of £50-£80 per square metre.

What factors impact the price of hiring a Painter/Decorator?

As you begin to search for a painter or decorator you’d like to work with, make sure you have answers to the questions they’re most likely to ask. These will include things such as where you’re based, what you’d like done and when you’d like it done. Once a decorator has this information, they’ll be able to offer you a price.

You may find their price factors in:

  • Work difficulty
  • Experience level required
  • Paint/material costs
  • Any repairs/smoothing required
  • What they’re painting (walls, ceilings, skirting boards)
  • Current work progress
  • Date

From our research, hiring local is almost always more cost effective than looking at larger businesses, but do keep in mind the risks of using a local tradesman—bigger companies will typically come fully insured in the event of an accident, and can easily send another staff member out if the one you’d booked becomes unavailable for whatever reason.

You can mitigate some of these risks by reference checking any decorator before bringing them into your property, or by asking your friends or colleagues for anyone they’ve had a good experience with previously.

How can I save money on hiring a Painter/Decorator?

Decorating work isn’t always easy to redo, so just choosing the cheapest quote might result in additional costs down the line if the work is done poorly. That being said, it’s worth being conscious of ways you might save on a quality painter or decorator.

  • Compare multiple quotes
  • Book out of season (usually winter)
  • Supply your own materials (paint, primer etc.)
  • Clean the work area ahead of their arrival to save time
  • Take care of smaller jobs yourself (fill in cracks, tape off windows/skirting boards)
  • Look local

Where can I find a Painter/Decorator?

Finding local tradesmen isn’t a particularly difficult task in the 21st century, but your first port of call should definitely be to ask anyone you know if they have a good referral they can give you.

You can also have a check online—websites like Checkatrade or trustatrader can offer you a wealth of options and both come with a verified review system, so you can get an idea of the level of quality you’ll be receiving.

Finally, local newspapers and publications will often feature advertisements for local businesses, so you may stumble across a business that looks like it’ll fit your requirements.

Quotes and estimates were gathered from a number of sources, such as Checkatrade, Hamuch and


The guidance on this site is based on our own analysis and is meant to help you identify options and narrow down your choices. We do not advise or tell you which product to buy; undertake your own due diligence before entering into any agreement. Read our full disclosure here.