Painter Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

Last updated: August 22, 2022

A Painter, or Professional Painter, is responsible for painting residential or commercial properties in a timely manner. Their duties include meeting with clients to discuss color schemes and pay rates, keeping an inventory of supplies like paint brushes, rollers, tarps or ladders and working with a team of Painters to oversee the completion of painting jobs.

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Painter duties and responsibilities

Employing Painters who are competent is important for the image and success of your business. The most common tasks that Painters are required to perform are:

  • Communicating with clients to determine their painting requirements and helping them make the best decisions for their projects
  • Assembling scaffolding as required
  • Covering trim, floors, furniture and other surfaces with masking tape, drop cloths and other protective coverings to keep them free of paint
  • Setting up ventilators and other safety equipment to protect Painters from unhealthy fumes
  • Preparing surfaces to be painted by washing them, filling holes and cracks with putty and sanding them until they’re smooth
  • Applying primer and other sealers to paint surfaces to ensure that paint sticks to them
  • Mixing and matching paint, stain and other finishes to job specifications
  • Applying paint, stain and other finishes to paint surfaces using paintbrushes, rollers or sprayers
  • Maintaining an inventory of supplies like paint brushes, rollers and tarps
  • Removing old finish using scrapers, chemical compounds or blowtorches
  • Estimating time and material costs on painting projects
  • Cleaning machines, equipment and work areas using water, solvents and other cleaning aids
  • Reviewing and implementing work orders and assignments
  • Removing and reinstalling fixtures (e..g, doorknobs, electric switch covers) as necessary
  • Following safeguards, rules and regulations
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Painter Job Description Examples

What does a Painter do?

Painters typically work for construction companies, contractors or maintenance repair services to help transform homes and businesses. They review paint samples and combine different colors to achieve a desired shade. Their job is to make sure that they maintain a clean space by covering furniture, flooring and crown molding before they start painting. They may also be responsible for assembling scaffolding, repairing holes in drywall and touching up old paint jobs.

Painter skills and qualifications

This section should be concise but detailed enough so that candidates know whether they are suitable for the painting position. Common skills and qualifications for Painters include:

  • Good color vision and aesthetic instincts
  • Attention to detail
  • Physical strength, stamina and dexterity
  • Familiarity with painting tools and materials
  • Time management skills to ensure tasks are completed on schedule
  • Customer service skills, if working with clients 
  • Collaboration and teamwork, if they work on a crew

Painter salary expectations

A Painter makes an average salary of $16.46 per hour. Pay rate may depend on level of experience, education and the geographical location.

Painter education and training requirements

Since there are no formal education requirements for becoming a Painter, most learn their duties on the job. Some employers prefer hiring Painters who have completed a painting apprenticeship. Apprentices must be at least 18 years old and have a high school diploma or GED. You may also want to hire a Painter certified by an official body, such as the National Association of Home Builders, the NACE International Institute or the Society for Protective Coatings.

Painter experience requirements

Experience requirements vary depending on how much time companies can invest in training their Painters in painting techniques, preparing surfaces and mixing and matching colors. Painters with at least two years of experience will require minimal training. If your painting job requires using harnesses or scaffolding, you may want to require that applicants be familiar with the necessary safety protocols.

Job description samples for similar positions

If this job description sample for a Painter does not meet your needs exactly, consider using one of the job description samples that we have created for a similar role:

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Frequently asked questions about Painters

 

What is the difference between a Painter and a Muralist?

Both Painters and Muralists have experience working with different surfaces, tools and paint materials, but they vary in terms of artistic ability. The main difference between a Painter and a Muralist is that Painters typically paint solid colors on walls and make repairs to uneven surfaces. In contrast, Muralists have expert artistic abilities that enable them to sketch and paint landscapes, cityscapes, abstracts and other forms of art on either walls or large canvasses.

 

What are the daily duties of a Painter?

On a typical day, a Painter meets their coworkers at their company location to gather materials and load work vans. They review their job assignments for the day and make sure they arrive on time to job sites. Before they start painting, they cover furniture and flooring with tarps to minimize spills. They set up scaffolding and ladders in areas with high ceilings and pour paint into trays for easy application. 

Once they fix surface imperfections, Painters use rollers and paint brushes to apply paint to walls and other surfaces. Then they clean up their workspace and survey their work to make sure they didn’t miss anything.

 

What qualities make a good Painter?

A good Painter is someone who understands how to complete common maintenance tasks like sanding surfaces and filling in holes in drywall. This quality is important, especially when completing touch-ups and home renovation projects. They have an eye for color and understand which colors to mix to create the desired shade. Painters also need to have excellent verbal communication to speak effectively with clients and their coworkers. Further, a good Painter should value cleanliness. They demonstrate this quality by covering surfaces before they start painting and cleaning up their area after they finish their job.

 

Who does a Painter report to?

Painters typically report to the Head Painter for specific tasks at the job site. They may also report to the Site Supervisor or Contractor to gain access to the property and obtain supplies, work schedule details and paychecks.

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