The Price Is Not Right… Yet.

Have I told you guys lately how much I love you. Love. My favorite thing about the internet is knowing that there are a whole bunch of other people out there who would have literally fallen off their chair and hit their head when handed a quote for having their kitchen painted that rang in at…


Five thousand one hundred and sixty-seven dollars.


I had to do a little Lamaze breathing after that.

The vast majority of people guessed between $1000-2000, and that’s about where my expectation was. I thought, eh, I’ll probably be willing to pay if it comes in around $1200, but $17/1800 would probably be pushing it. So clearly I had no idea what the range would be, but even so, $5k is like a secondhand tractor, or a complete teardown and rebuild of the master bath. I am definitely not going to spend that on painting the kitchen when I can do it myself and it will only cost me 14 bottles of wine and eight new gray hairs. Right?

So anyway, the winner of yesterday’s impromptu Price is Right: Kitchen Painting Edition is..

Nancy S with a guess of $4,999.28

Nancy, it absolutely makes my day to be able to contribute to your own tool fund, or paint fund, or whatever-strikes-your-fancy-at-Lowe’s fund, although I’m rooting for a new tool

As far as painting the kitchen goes, I’m in the process of getting a second quote (this time from a guy with a sprayer) and I’m hoping the price comes in at a level that doesn’t result in me needing stitches.

Now to make myself feel better about the fact that I won’t be coming home to a painted kitchen tomorrow, I’m going to go rip out some carpet from somewhere in the house. If there are two things I know for sure about DIY 1.) it’s cheaper to do it yourself, and 2.) demo will always make you feel better.


23 Responses

  1. what??? wow… those worse than the quote that we got to paint the exterior of our house… our brick house… with only a few pieces of wood trim that needed to be painted.

  2. Do you have to paint it? Really? I like the color of the wood – just change the floor to match the cabinets and appliances (if the floor needs to be done).

    1. Yep, the wood, wood, everywhere is definitely going. I would fully support this look in someone else’s house if it was their style, or if this kitchen was in a timberframe cabin up north, but not in this farmhouse.

      It’s a little dated, but there’s nothing really wrong with it other than it’s important to me that this house fits my personality, and the yellow knotty pine just isn’t doing it!

      1. I totally agree. Knotty pine is really not my thing. I can only really handle it if it is a cabin on a lake up north somewhere. I would have laughed out loud, literally, after seeing that estimate. DIY or die trying– and I say that after hiring someone to tear the chimney off my house. Ha. Have to pick and choose your battles.

  3. I wish I lived closer; I would be glad to help paint, but I would be crying the whole time I was painting over that wood.

    For $5000 I would hope that included taking the whole kitchen outside to paint it and bring it back in when finished.

  4. Wow, I guess I was trying to be reasonable with my guess. Silly me, I should have been inhaling paint fumes when I entered my guess.

  5. In past,I have found WIDE variation in painting estimates, sometimes by 2,ooo dollars!. But in the end, I have never found an estimate for painting that i was willing to pay, because I’ve always been able to do it myself. I can never stop the calculation in my head of how many hours I have to work at my paycheck job to afford to pay someone else to do something. It’s a competition between value of my Free time vs value of hours I have to work to pay.

  6. Congratulations Nancy!

    That is a crazy amount! I go for the 14 bottles of wine approach!

    I’m with you on painting the wood. Yes, it is beautiful but it just doesn’t go with the house and if you don’t like it either than that is just a no-brainer!

  7. Holy jesus! The floors in the rest of our house are getting refinished for less than 1/2 that price. I might have fallen on the floor if we got that quote.

  8. There is another alternative…..
    You could do it yourself but break it down to stages. I know I never like to pay someone else for something I can do.
    Pick which ever part bothers you the most OR is the toughest and do that first or just get the estimate for the walls only. I would tackle the walls one month. Tackle the upper cabinets another… you may decide to go with a different color on the base cabinets or a deeper stain. This way you can fill in other smaller projects in other areas around your place while your waiting for paint to dry!

  9. Does that mean there are people out there who pay that painter those kind of prices? Or is he perpetually unemployed…I wonder.

  10. Holy shit. Clearly some of us forgot to factor in the “I really don’t wanna come out here and paint this” surcharge.

  11. Ok, I never comment, but I’ve been following since the last house. I live just over in Ypsi (pretty sure you’re not far, since you’ve mentioned A2 & Materials Unlimited a couple times), and there’s a painter I’ve used for smaller projects (deck) and my condo association uses for larger ones- his name is Tom Kern, he’s a one-man show, and i’m 98% sure that he can quote something lower than that. His email is, and for phone I’ve got (734) 740-1867.
    I mean, $5k. Damn. I don’t think I’ve ever needed anything painted *that* badly.

  12. I am truly in the wrong profession…Holy WOW!

    Maybe you need to think of the painting as starting with the P for Painting Party! Hey, it worked for the pile of stuff in the field!

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