Building Tips

Tips for Painting Exterior Brick and How Much it Costs

Architect: Dixon Kirby Photo Credit: Luker Photography

We are in the process of painting our exterior brick. Henry and I love painted brick and think it’s such a classic, timeless look. I think a lot of people want to do it, but for some reason are a little hesitant about taking the leap.

It could be that the lack of knowledge and knowing exactly what they are doing scares them some. I can totally relate, so I wanted to give you some tips on painting the exterior of your home that will hopefully give you a little more knowledge and put you at ease. Whether DIYing or hiring it done, these tips will help you.

Prepping

Prepping is a major part that is very crucial in making sure painted exterior brick is done properly. Make sure and clean the brick with a cleaning mixture before you do anything. If the brick isn’t too dirty, a hose, a stiff-bristled brush, and soapy water will work just fine.

After cleaning, make sure and fill in all cracks with acrylic caulk. This will need time to dry before applying the exterior paint. Now, you will want to make sure and cover all the windows and doors with plastic. Use multiple layers if necessary and painter’s tape to secure tightly.

Using the Right Tools and Materials

Like any other job, having the right tools on hand will make the job flow much smoother and easier. You will want to make sure you have a sprayer or roller that can cover large amounts of an area at one time. We recommend using a sprayer. This will cut down on work time, will make it easier to get into all the joints, and will be much easier overall. But make sure to spray at all angles to make sure the paint gets into all of the nooks and crannies of the brick. This is especially important if you have over grouted joints like our house.

If using a sprayer, you will still need a brush on hand for any drips or any hard to reach areas. Always keep in mind that before applying a second or third coat, you want to make sure and let the paint dry for at least 4-6 hours.

It’s also very important to use the right type of paint on your exterior brick. We recommend using either a mineral-based paint or a latex paint made specifically for masonry. Both are fine, but mineral-based should hold up even longer.

Weather Conditions

I don’t think it takes much to figure this one out, but before you start painting, consider the weather conditions. Being extremely too cold or too hot will not be the best conditions for painting brick. Windy weather and rain probably won’t work either.

Make sure and check your forecast for a few good days of good temperatures and pleasant working conditions. This will make it much better for the painter and the paint will adhere to the surface much better.

How Much Does It Cost?

We have painted brick as a DIY on a previous flip house but decided to hire it done this go around. Not because it’s difficult, we simply don’t have the time right now. But I will confess, we are spending lots more money having it hired out! As I am writing the check, I’m for sure rethinking our decision on this one. But, with our high roof pitch and hard to reach areas, it would have also been very difficult for us to have completed this job.

When DIYing, you are only paying for the paint and the tools. To DIY a 2,500 square ft home you are looking at around $800 dollars including the paint and a good sprayer. If hiring it out, labor can range anywhere from $150-$350 per hour. I know, it is very pricey!

Most of the time it is broken down by the job, but I wanted to show how they get their figures. They base it on how long it will take them, tools, materials(including paint), and of course multiple workers. A 2,500 square ft home on average would cost you around $7,500 dollars to have the entire brick home painted. That is $6,900 more dollars than DIYing it!

A Year Later

It is now almost a year later and you ask, are we happy with the decision to paint our brand new brick? Yes! We wouldn’t have done it any other way! We absolutely love our white painted brick. Even though at first I was a little unsure if we were making the right decision, it was one of the best we made during the entire building process. It gives our home character and a unique, but timeless look.

Our new house in all of its painted brick glory.

This is one area we did spend a little extra on, considering we did not DIY this project as part of the build. It was money well spent. Due to the largeness of our home, I feel like we would have been a little overwhelmed with painting it on our own. I suggest evaluating the size of your home along with your time and budget before making the decision on whether or not to take on this project.

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18 Comments

  • Reply Pamela

    Painted brick is so very handsome; love the images. Very helpful info on the breakdown of costs for labor and materials. While we have not yet had the opportunity to paint a brick exterior, we have had the body of our old colonial house painted three occasions over a fifteen year period. It is an expensive, but necessary part of home maintenance. For that reason, we intend our future homes to be either brick or stucco structures!

    December 4, 2019 at 4:27 pm
    • Reply Henry

      Hello Pamela! We also love the look of painted brick, but yes, it is lots to maintain and keep up. The things we do to make our homes stay looking beautiful, right!

      December 4, 2019 at 6:03 pm
  • Reply Lori Kuipers

    Could you possibly recommend a certain sprayer to buy? We will be painting our brick home next summer. Thanks for all the tips? Also did you prime your brick first? Or just layers of paint?

    December 4, 2019 at 6:27 pm
    • Reply Henry

      Hello Lori! This is really exciting and I think you will love it! We recommend using one out of the Graco Pro Series …they are little expensive, but worth it. The painter this go around did use one coat of primer then two coats of the paint color.

      December 5, 2019 at 3:52 pm
      • Reply Kim Cagnazzi

        Any tricks to using a paint sprayer? I just purchased a Grace and we currently have a hate/hate relationship. My first project was a headboard. Drips everywhere, lots of cleanup in between waiting for paint to dry, etc…

        April 21, 2020 at 11:55 pm
        • Reply Henry

          They can take a little getting use to. The main thing to keep in mind is do not hold the sprayer in one place while spraying. Keep it moving in long straight strokes. If you hold it in one place, it will run.

          April 22, 2020 at 2:37 am
    • Reply Robyn Talton

      Beautiful color!!! Could you please reply with the color paint you used?

      June 5, 2020 at 3:27 am
  • Reply Tonja D

    It’s a bit off topic (I love this post and found it helpful!), but we’re in the pre-design process of our house right now, figuring out what we want, and I’m wondering what this style of home is called? Particularly the sloping/offset curved roof… is there a name to describe that, that would help me in my searches and designing? Thank you!

    December 5, 2019 at 3:09 am
  • Reply Anita

    We would like to paint our new home with the Sherwin Williams White Duck. There are so many different kinds when I went to look at the store. Can you tell me which kind you used and the kind of finish – flat, satin or something else. Love your ideas!

    February 24, 2020 at 5:40 pm
  • Reply Debbie Newsom

    Do you have a good sprayer you would recommend for painting exterior brick and hardiplank?

    March 26, 2020 at 4:34 pm
  • Reply Julie Feld

    Your home is gorgeous! We are building a white brick home and looking at a similar palate. Do you know what type of brick you have and what color is the metal part of the roof? We are having white windows with a cedar roof and some metal and trying to determine the metal color. Thank you!

    April 22, 2020 at 1:57 am
    • Reply Henry

      Thank you, but you might be thinking the first picture is our home. We don’t have any metal on our roof. That is an inspiration picture. You can see our completed home at the end of the article.

      April 22, 2020 at 2:29 am
  • Reply Lyn

    Thank you for this beautiful post. I am very curious about your cedar trim. How did you apply boards over windows & how is the wood protected? We are about to re stucco our home & love your look. Help?

    April 27, 2020 at 4:35 pm
  • Reply Lindsay B

    Wonderful read! I am trying to build up the courage to take the leap and paint or lime wash our house. The tricky part is our house isn’t all brick. It is both stone and brick. Have you ever seen stone painted as well? Do you use the same methods and materials as brick?

    April 27, 2020 at 7:15 pm
  • Reply Amy

    Your home looks gorgeous and I love the shade of white you chose. I see above that you recommended Romabio products. Is that what you used on this brick? What finish of paint did you use on the siding (flat, satin, or something else)?

    June 13, 2020 at 6:31 pm
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