How Much Does It Cost to Paint a Mural?

Typical Range:

$724 - $1,820

Find out how much your project will cost.

Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 181 HomeAdvisor members. Embed this data

How We Get This Data

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  • Homeowners use HomeAdvisor to find pros for home projects.
  • When their projects are done, they fill out a short cost survey.
  • We compile the data and report costs back to you.

Updated September 27, 2022

Written by HomeAdvisor.

Wall mural pricing averages $1,245, or between $724 and $1,820. Mural painters cost anywhere from $500 to $3,000 or more. However, several factors determine the cost, such as the painting size, project location, the artist's experience, and extra budget considerations like consultations, sketches, wall preparation, scaffolding, and the artist's minimum fee. Because prices vary, the best way to price a mural is to talk to a muralist.

2022 Notice: Material Prices Are Surging

Demand for siding and other building materials has grown over the past year. And as a result, manufacturers are increasing materials prices. Prices have gone up 5% to 10% this year, and many parts of the country are experiencing long delivery times. If you're planning a building project, we recommend starting as early as possible in the season, preparing for potential price fluctuations, and allowing extra time to order materials.

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National Average $1,245
Typical Range $724 - $1,820
Low End - High End $300 - $3,000

Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 181 HomeAdvisor members.

Mural Pricing

Mural pricing runs an average of $700 to $2,000. Many artists charge $20 to $40 per square foot on average, although it can range lower and higher. You’ll often pay a baseline fee of at least $300, regardless of the size. Your price may be lower or higher depending on the following:

  • Size

  • Level of detail

  • Location (e.g., indoor or outdoor)

  • Accessibility

  • Wall preparation

  • Wall material (e.g., adding brick painting costs to your budget)

  • Travel

  • Weather

  • Safety and equipment

  • Painting style (e.g., hand-painted or spray-painted)

  • Preservation (sealing)

  • Muralist's rate (experienced painters can charge up to five times the average)

Mural Cost per Square Foot

Mural pricing runs about $10 to $50 per square foot. Less commonly, you'll find some pricing above this range for highly in-demand artists. Most square foot prices come with a minimum price, regardless of the mural size. This covers the cost of overhead, fees, permits, and higher labor costs associated with the cost of living in some areas. Most artists also charge a deposit before starting any sketches.

A few pricing factors you’ll want to consider include:

  • Many pros require a baseline fee of $300–$1,000, even for tiny murals. 

  • Less detailed paintings or less experienced painters run the lowest rates.

  • High-detail projects by in-demand artists can exceed $50 per sq. ft.

  • An artist's rate per square foot may decrease as the size of an outdoor mural project increases, depending on the level of detail.

Mural Size in Sq. Ft.Low Average CostHigh Average Cost
10$300$500
20$300$1,000
40$400$2,000
60$600$3,000
80$800$4,000
100$1,000$5,000
200$2,000$10,000
500$5,000$25,000
1,000$10,000$50,000

Wall Mural Pricing

Interior wall mural pricing runs about $10 to $50 per square foot or $50 to $100 per hour. You'll pay more for higher levels of detail and experience. Your rate depends on the following:

  • Size

  • Level of detail

  • Artist experience level

  • Ease of access

A few other factors that might add to your cost include:

  • Wall preparation: Some artists don't do prep work, so you'll need to hire an interior painting professional. Learn more about painter fees.

  • Travel: Expect to pay a daily fee or increased rate if the artist travels outside their regular service area.

  • Wall material: Porous wall materials like wood require extra time and preparation.

  • Safety and equipment: Expect to pay a higher rate or extra fee to rent scaffolding or ladders.

Outdoor Mural Pricing

Outdoor mural pricing runs approximately $10 to $50 per square foot or $50 to $100 per hour, the same as interior pricing. However, larger murals might run on the lower end per square foot if it’s not a highly detailed piece since the amount of time it takes to plan and paint is typically lower than smaller, more intricate pieces.

Several factors might add to your cost:

  • Wall preparation: If the wall needs repairs and prep work, your artist will charge several hundred dollars to prepare it. Some artists don't do such work, so you'll need to hire a local exterior painting professional.

  • Cost of outdoor paint: Exterior primer costs a bit more than interior. Your artist will often do the priming.

  • Level of detail needed: Outdoor murals are often larger and have less detail than interior ones, meaning they’ll cost a bit less.

  • Safety and equipment: A large outdoor mural may call for extra equipment and safety measures, like scaffolding and a painting assistant.

  • Weather conditions: Your artist may need to factor in weather-related costs. For instance, they may lose several hours, even days, due to high winds, extreme temperatures, or moisture. Expect your contract to include provisions for compensation over delays and issues with weather.

Hand-Painted Wall Murals Pricing

Hand-painted wall murals cost about $10 to $50 per square foot or $50 to $100 per hour to paint, the same as both indoor and outdoor murals. It takes quite a bit longer than stenciled art, occasionally driving up the price. Hand-painted murals are the most common type of application. 

Spray Painted Wall Mural Price

A spray-painted or stenciled mural might range from $10 to $50 per square foot, depending on:

  • Demand for spray paint artists in your area

  • The artist's experience level

  • Level of detail needed

Muralists who specialize in spray painting typically cost more because it's a specialty skill without many training opportunities, making these artists more scarce and in demand.

Mural Painter Cost

Mural painters charge about $50 to $100 per hour or generally $20 to $40 per square foot, depending on their experience and the intricacy of your painting. You might pay $50 or more per square foot for an in-demand painter.

There are several things to know about how muralists charge:

  • Consultations and sketches: Artists may charge for their initial consultation, but expect to pay for initial sketches. Sketch fees average $300–$1,500, or a percentage of your mural cost.

  • Minimums: Many muralists set a minimum project price, regardless of the size. This usually ranges from $300–$1,000 but can be higher.

  • Extras: Most artists charge extra for things like scaffolding and wall preparation.

  • Payments: Artists typically ask for a 50% down payment on the work in advance to cover materials and potential cancellation costs. Get a detailed contract before you make any payments. You can learn more about what a contract should include.

Brighten Up Your Home or Office Space. Find a Muralist Near You.
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Preservation Expenses

The cost to seal and preserve a mural is about $100 to $300, depending on the size. The artist typically builds this rate into your total mural cost, but you’ll want to ask to be sure. Some factors that can affect the life span of your mural are listed below.

Type of Paint

High-quality paint will make your mural last longer. For example, house paint fades within three to five years versus artist-quality acrylic paint, which can last decades. You may consider adding exterior painting costs to your project before hiring a muralist.

Some top brands include:

  • Nova Color

  • Liquitex

  • Blick

  • Golden

  • Winsor & Newton

Type of Sealant

Most artists charge an extra $1 to $3 per square foot for sealing the paint after it’s applied. Sealant or varnish is just as important as paint. For example, urethane makes surfaces easy to clean, but it performs poorly in direct sunlight. Also, several varnish manufacturers offer products with UV inhibitors (look for “UV protective” on the label). Talk to your muralist to find the best varnish for your project.

Sun Exposure

Whether indoors or outdoors, sun exposure causes fading. If your mural is indoors, minimize sun exposure with window coatings that block UV rays. If your mural is outdoors, plan your mural so it's shaded most of the day or plant trees. Most high-end paints are UV-resistant with clear sealants, adding another layer of protection. 

Pigment

Pigments are rated according to their lightfastness by ASTM International (formerly the American Society for Testing and Materials) and the British Standard (B/S). You can check for the lightfastness in the product information or consult with your painter.

  • ASTM International: ASTM I and ASTM II are the most lightfast; ASTM III is the least lightfast.

  • B/S: A rating of six to eight is best for exteriors; below six isn't lightfast enough.

Example Mural Price

Check out this large hand-painted interior mural at the HomeAdvisor headquarters, done by artist Jessica Forrestal. This black-and-white mural on a gray wall showcases simple home improvement themes, like screws and outlets,) that stretch across dozens of feet and two floors. According to the artist, a project like this usually runs around $27 to $30 per square foot. Photos of her work are below.

full view of 2-story interior mural painted in Denver, CO
parial view of hand-painted indoor mural
partial view of wall mural
partial view of large mural

"Working back and forth between the artist's and client's vision takes some time,” says Jessica Forrestal, a professional artist based in Denver, CO. “Expect to go through a couple of versions of the planned mural before landing on the final product. Creating a timeline of when different parts of the process need to be completed is helpful for both parties. Also, each mural artist works differently with different materials. Understanding how and why the artist creates can go a long way in making sure he or she is a good fit for the project."

DIY vs. Hiring a Mural Painter

Painting a mural takes very specialized artistic skills, even for a beginner. However, there are DIY options, like using stencils or applying a vinyl mural sticker. However, both options come with a time commitment for less than artistic results. Also, it’s tough to do either on porous or uneven surfaces, like brick and stone. For a professional quality project, hire a local mural painter

How to Hire a Muralist

Hiring a muralist isn’t complex, but there are some distinct steps you’ll need to take. Most muralists will walk you through all of these steps.

  1. Research local muralists and artists, checking reviews and their body of work.

  2. Contact several and get quotes from the ones who have artwork that best fits your vision in a style you appreciate.

  3. Sign a contract and pay the deposit. Most professionals won’t start a project without a contract and deposit, which is generally 50% of the total price.

  4. Work with your artist to design the mural. This includes a sketch and up to three revisions. You can often do this as part of the project or before signing the contract for an additional fee. 

  5. Let the artist work. 

  6. Review the work and make the final payment if you’re satisfied.

Still Have Questions? Ask Local Artists About Your Mural Project.
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FAQs

How much do muralists make?

Muralists make approximately $10,000 to $250,000 per year. The median salary for a muralist is $50,000 per year, and the average salary ranges from $43,000 to $110,000 per year. While many muralists work for themselves, it’s also quite common for artists to work together and for each other in a business setting, splitting the cost of overhead, marketing, and other expenses.

How much should mural pricing be for beginners?

Pricing for beginner muralists ranges from about $10 to $30 per square foot, with at least a $300 minimum price. After one or two years of experience, the muralist typically charges about $10 per square foot more. Beginning artists often work for other artists in an apprentice or helper capacity. Typically, an artist should increase their price about every six months but also as they gain experience.

How long does it take to complete a mural?

A mural often takes one to three days to complete or about 10 to 20 hours. But the time it takes to complete a mural depends heavily on the size of the project, how many different colors it uses, how complex the design is, whether the artist is sealing and prepping the surface, and if it’s indoors or outdoors.

Do murals need planning permission?

Whether your mural needs planning permission depends entirely on your location and what local regulations are in force. Your muralist will know about these details for their location. However, if you need them to travel to your area, it may take some research and planning on their part to ensure all the permits are in place.

As the homeowner or business owner, contact your local planning commission and find out what sort of permits and regulations govern your area. Permit costs may not be covered by your artist.

What are mural rights?

Mural rights are copyrights. Most muralists retain the copyright to their work, meaning you can't use the art for other commercial purposes, such as advertising, merchandising, or other profitable use. You can negotiate the use of the copyright, usually for a fee from any sales or income generated from the use of the art. Copyrights are usually covered in any mural contract.

Do street artists get paid?

Street artists may or may not get paid, depending on if a homeowner or business owner commissioned the work. Typically, street artists don't get paid, but do the artwork as a personal project. They may end up getting commissioned to do similar work for various businesses.