Matte paint upgrade

ddr000February 11, 2013


I'm building a new house in the Northeast, and we're getting ready to choose paint. The builder's default paint for walls is BM Regal in flat sheen. I inquired about cost of doing all the walls in Matte instead, and got a quote of $1500 for the whole house. The house is 5 bedrooms, 4 baths, total about 3500 sq. ft plus garage.

Is that reasonable? I'm not very familiar with painting (done some basic DIY, but don't know much), it seems that paint materials price difference is probably ~$500 (if that). Is there substantially more labor involved in doing matte? The house is already sheetrocked and taped; the price upgrade is coming from the paint guy.

I'm primarily looking to get a sense whether this is reasonable upcharge from flat, or something I need to question the builder.

Many thanks!

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It's reasonable but not so much because of the difference in the price of the paint itself, but the labor. Usually, upgrading to a washable paint is adding another coat if they are doing prime plus 2 coats finish. Flat finish is generally prime plus one coat. You may want to inquire about upgrading to Aura Matte though. IMO, BM Regal Matte isn't that great of a paint.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2013 at 8:48PM
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Thanks for the info, paintguy. I inquired about the Aura Matte, and was told it'd be about $1000 extra in paint costs, likely no labor difference. Would you say that's a) reasonable, and b) worthwhile upgrade?


    Bookmark   February 16, 2013 at 10:27AM
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So you mean $2500 more than the original flat estimate for Aura, $1500 more for Regal matte? What is the total cost of the job? Ask how many gallons if it's not detailed on the estimate so you can calculate the materials price difference.

I think another coat of matte is required to even out its slight sheen and make it consistent across the wall, no roller marks. It also enriches the color to add another coat.

One coat of flat over prime does not sound worth it to me. If you have kids etc. your walls will not stand the test of time. Aura is more durable and the color is not supposed to fade much over the years. Just make sure you get your color right! Or if you tire and repaint fairly frequently maybe it's not as important.

This post was edited by snookums2 on Sat, Feb 16, 13 at 18:24

    Bookmark   February 16, 2013 at 5:58PM
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Thanks, snookums2. Yes, it's $1500 to upgrade from Regal Flat to Regal Matte (I'm guessing they're doing a second coat, thus the cost difference). And another $1000 to go Aura. I don't know the total cost of the job, since it's included into overall build project.

I have Regal eggshell in my current house, and it has worn quite well, I have Aura for a dark color in one bathroom, can't say it looks any better. Going from flat to matte seems like a no brainer. Spending another $1k to do the job in Aura doesn't seem as worth while. It seems it would be better to spend a few dollars to upgrade paint for high traffic areas like hallways and mudroom, and regal matte everywhere else.

Any other advice, much appreciated.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2013 at 8:31PM
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