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How To Read Blueprints and Price Commercial Painting Jobs:


In the business of painting, commercial painting jobs can be one of the most ambitious tasks. Bidding on projects requires a keen eye for details, especially when it comes to deciphering blueprints. In this guide, we’ll focus on a simplified approach, ensuring that your bid is not just accurate but leaves no room for confusion. Let’s dive into the essentials of blueprint analysis, room by room, to create bids that stand out for their clarity and specificity.





Understanding Blueprints:

When blueprints come across the desk it can be ambitious for new and decently experienced painting contractors alike. However it is a super simple process to understand and can completely change how your business operates.


Blueprints take a 3D space and put it onto 2D paper. While that can be difficult to understand at first it is extremely simple once learned. Blueprints have wall dimension's and ceiling height. Use these two variables to calculate the square footage of the paint necessary surfaces.

Let’s take a look a the painting contracting specific guidelines:

1. Identify Windows, Doorframes, Fireplaces, gaps, etc. and calculating paint necessary surfaces:

  • Begin by noting the locations of windows, doorframes, fireplaces etc. in each room. These elements impact paint calculations and labor requirements, forming the foundation of your understanding of the space.

  • To Calculate the costs of the job you will go through room by room (space by space) and calculate the same way you would in person.


2. Calculate Paint Costs:

• Determine the type of paint needed for each surface. Talk with the project lead to establish what types of paints you will be using. Don’t be scared to ask questions.

• Consider the number of coats required based on the blueprint specifications.

• Calculate the quantity of paint needed for windows, doorframes, walls, and any other surfaces. Go through the blueprints room by room the same way that you would go through the property in person (obviously excluding the windows/gaps that you have already established)

3. Labor Costs:

• Estimate labor hours for each room based on surface area and preparation needs.

• Factor in any intricacies identified in the blueprints, such as unique surface conditions or special coatings.

  • Price the labor costs the same way you price any other job. Use your numbers on labor capability to calculate the total man hours necessary and then calculate the jobs total labor cost to you.

4. Bid Specifics:

• Break down costs for each room separately to provide a clear overview.

• Specify the type and quantity of paint for each surface.

• Clearly outline labor hours and any additional considerations, ensuring accuracy on your end.

  • Make sure that your bid submission to the job lead is more streamlined and just touches on the most important details while being specific enough prevent any miscommunication. Check out our templates on bidding commercial painting jobs!


In looking at commercial painting bids, simplicity and clarity are your allies. By analyzing blueprints, calculating costs room by room, and ensuring bid specificity, you not only present an accurate proposal but also establish a foundation of trust with clients and your team.


Please schedule a FREE Painting Business Checkup with the link below to have an in depth conversation about your business and learn more!

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