DIY Painting & Finishing

Should You Tip Painters?

Discover whether tipping a painter for a job well done is expected or even acceptable.
Deirdre Mundorf Avatar
do you tip painters

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Q: I hired a painting company to paint multiple rooms in my home next week. It’s been so long since I’ve had painters out that I’m not sure whether I need to add a tip in addition to the fee that the company is charging me for their services. Do you tip painters?

A: You’re not alone in your confusion. Whether or not to tip house painters is a common question, and understandably so with the number of service professionals who rely on tips, such as servers, hair stylists, and delivery personnel. As a general rule, the answer to “should you tip painters” is no. Painters are compensated for their time by the company for which they work. However, there are exceptions to every rule, so continue reading to learn more about etiquette regarding giving a tip to painters.

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If you’ve contracted their service, house painters do not expect tips.

House painters do not expect tips from their customers, and most individuals do not tip painters. The painting company you hire is responsible for compensating the painters who work there.

Unlike servers at a restaurant who rely on tips to make up a bulk of their salary, painters are paid a higher hourly rate. While the exact salary of a painter can vary quite a bit based on experience and location, their average hourly rate is just over $18, according to Indeed.

Accepting tips may be against company policy or contract terms.

do you tip painters

In some cases the answer to whether or not you’re supposed to tip painters is a definite no. Some painting companies institute policies that prohibit their employees from accepting tips. If you try to tip your painters, and they accept the tip, they could be breaching their contract and may end up losing their job or facing some other repercussions.

If you want to tip the painters working at your home, first check with the company you hired to see if their workers are allowed to accept tips. This way, you won’t risk getting someone in trouble.

Consider tipping for a job well done or special circumstances.

While in most cases, the answer to, “do you tip a painter,” is no, there are some exceptions to this rule. If the painters you hire really go above and beyond the call of duty, such as by working on the weekend, doing some extra repairs that weren’t part of the original estimate, painting in a really tight space, or leaving the area spotless after their work is finished, you might consider giving them a tip.

Tipping in these instances can let the individuals know that you appreciate their attention to detail or the extra effort that they put into their work.

RELATED: Painting the House: Should You Hire a Pro?

A positive review goes a long way.

do you tip painters

Putting a few extra dollars into someone’s pocket can be helpful, but leaving a positive review can have a greater positive impact on a company’s future success. Rather than trying to decide how much to tip painters, take the time to write a glowing review of the company. This will help boost their overall online reviews, which will make them look more appealing to potential customers. In turn, they will get more business and make more money.

If one or more of the individuals who worked at your home really stood out to you, let their boss know. Express your overall satisfaction with the job they did and how they went out of their way to do such a good job painting your home. This type of positive review will help their supervisor see what an asset they are to the company and could lead to future raises.

Offer snacks as a tip alternative.

Painters can work long days and may not always bring enough food or water with them to get through the day. Rather than offering a cash tip, consider providing them with cold water and snacks to show your appreciation.

If the painting crew working at your home is still working later into the evening, you could even consider ordering them food from a local restaurant or making a few extra portions of the meal you’ll be cooking. Most painters will appreciate the offer of food or a drink, but keep in mind that not all will accept, for various reasons, so don’t take it personally if someone says “no, thank you.”