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Get Quotes from Top Painters in Indianapolis, IN

Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Painter in the City of Indianapolis

Hiring a good painter in Indianapolis goes beyond getting the right person to apply new paints to your walls to boost your home's appeal, the decision can also have serious implications on your health. Over 60% of all houses across Indiana were built before 1978 and painted with lead-based paints that should be handled with professional care. You will be avoiding the hazard of lead poisoning, by choosing to leave your painting to qualified and well-trained professionals. However, before you settle for a painter in the city, ask the following questions to ensure you are making the right hire:

Are You Licensed to Practice as a Painter in the City of Indianapolis?

Section 875-101 of the Indianapolis and Marion County Code of Ordinances mandates that contractors obtain licenses before carrying out any construction-related activities on existing or new structures in Indianapolis. This includes the improvement, rehabilitation, or remodeling of these structures. Subsequently, per this law, painters in Indianapolis are required to obtain a general contractor's license from the Indianapolis Department of Business and Neighborhood Services(IDBNS) before carrying out work within the city. Failure to meet this licensing requirement may result in a fine as well as a civil suit against such painter by the city in compliance with the city's regulations. Also, although there is no penalty for hiring an unlicensed painter, doing so could leave you open to dubious professionals who may carry out shoddy work or even carry out work that does not fall in line with the city's specifications.

Painters that wish to obtain a general contractor's license will need to complete a license application, pay the requisite fee, and also provide other necessary documents to the Indianapolis Department of Business and Neighborhood Services. Before the requested license is issued, the painter is also required to obtain valid general liability insurance and worker's compensation where applicable, as well as a permit surety bond of $10,000. Completed applications may be emailed to the IDBNS or mailed to the department at

Department of Business and Neighborhood Services
Contractor Licensing
1200 Madison Avenue
Suite 100
Indianapolis, IN 46225

You should also bear in mind that there are federal regulations concerning the existence of lead-based paint in homes, particularly in homes constructed before 1978. Per these regulations, contractors are required to obtain a ˜Lead-Safe Certification' from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) or from an EPA-certified state agency before carrying out work on homes constructed before 1978. The EPA also has guidelines for contractors that work on homes constructed before 1978, and it also provides other resources that homeowners are advised to familiarise themselves with.

You can find properly licensed painters in Indianapolis by accessing the List of License General Contractors provided for this purpose by the IDBNS. If you have inquiries concerning licenses or the licensing process, you can contact the IDBNS at (317) 327- 8700.

How Much Do You Charge Compared to Other Painters in the City of Indianapolis?

According to data provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, painters in Indianapolis earn an average hourly wage of $20.92, which is the same as the state average. However, painters in Indianapolis charge different amounts depending on a variety of factors. Some of these factors include the nature of the project, the type and cost of materials to be used, as well as the duration and amount of labor required for the job. Therefore, before you hire any painter near you, it is advisable that you obtain multiple estimates from different painters. This would enable you get the best possible price and spot possible scams.

A painter in the City of Indianapolis earns an annual average wages of $43,520. The table below provides the hourly mean wage of painters in Indianapolis and compares this with the wages of painters in other parts of Indiana and several other major cities in the United States:

Indianapolis Painters Mean Hourly Wage
$20.92
Indiana Painters Mean Hourly Wage
$20.92
New York City Painters Mean Hourly Wage
$28.06
Chicago Painters Mean Hourly Wage
$29.15
Dallas Painters Mean Hourly Wage
$18.75
Seattle Painters Mean Hourly Wage
$24.24
Los Angeles Painters Mean Hourly Wage
$26.36
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Kind of Painting Services Do You Offer?

There are a vast variety of services that painters in Indianapolis offer to interested parties. These include interior and exterior painting of walls, doors, and window frames, installation and removal of wallpapers, reconditioning of wooden decks and sidings, gel staining of fiberglass doors as well as power washing. When you want to hire a painter, you should bear in mind that not all painters can handle the same types of projects or have the same expertise. Some painters may specialize in commercial painting while others may only handle residential paintings. Equally, some painters may also focus on specific painting-related niches, such as only handling interior or exterior wall painting, or painting only new structures.

Note that each type of service will typically have its own requirements and some work may require that the painter possess specialized tools and specific skills and knowledge. Consequently, before you hire a painter, you should make sure that the intended painter can properly handle your project and has the required tools to carry out such a task. You should also ensure that you obtain a proper estimate on the cost of the job before deciding on who to hire. Listed below are cost estimates for some painting services provided by painters in Indianapolis:

Cost of Interior House Painting or Staining
$24 - $35 per hour
Cost of Exterior House Painting or Staining
$1.90 - $2.80 per square foot
Cost of Paint Removal
$0.95 - $2.30 per square foot
Cost of Faux Painting
$1.74 - $3.49 per square foot
Cost of Texture Painting
$35 - $45 per hour

Do You Carry the Necessary Insurance Policy for Painters in the City of Indianapolis?

Painters, like other licensed contractors in Indianapolis, are mandated under the Indianapolis-Marion County Code of Ordinances to possess valid general liability insurance, a permit surety bond, and worker's compensation, if they have employees. The general liability insurance coverage must have individual plans of $100,000 for each incidence of property damage or $500,000 for each incidence of bodily injury or death. If the painter seeks to have a shared policy, the minimum value of this policy for either property damage or bodily injury must be $500,000. Painters with employees must also maintain worker's compensation in compliance with the state regulations, and before bidding for a job, the painter must post a bond of a value of $10,000 with the city.

Failing to hire an insured painter could result in liability for any unforeseen injuries, death, or property damage that occurs in the course of executing your project, so it is vital you only hire properly insured painters. Before you hire any painter, you should always confirm that this individual has a valid insurance cover. You can do this by requesting a copy of the painter's policy certificate and contacting the insurance policy provider to authenticate it.

How to File a Complaint Against a Bad Painter in the City of Indianapolis

Home improvement activities are important, common, and very lucrative projects in the U.S., and it is estimated that billions of dollars are spent annually on these activities by homeowners across the country. Due to the amount of money spent on home improvements, dubious persons try to take advantage of homeowners to perpetrate scams and other fraudulent acts. For example, in 2020, it was reported that an Indianapolis resident had fallen victim to a home improvement scam after paying money to a contractor for some work and never hearing from the contractor afterward. With this in mind, it is very important that you carry out extensive due diligence before you hire any painter in the city to carry out work on your home. Some of the common techniques adopted by these scammers include unsolicited offers to paint your home at ridiculously low prices and collecting money for a job and then failing to either execute or complete the job.

Before you hire any painter in Indianapolis, here are some steps to take to ensure that you do not fall victim to scammers:

  • Do not hire persons that show up at your doorstep uninvited.
  • Only hire a licensed and insured painter. You can find licensed painters in Indianapolis using the List of Licensed General Contractors provided by the Indianapolis Department of Business and Neighborhood Services for this purpose.
  • Always ask for recommendations from trusted sources such as friends, neighbors, real estate agents, or other construction professionals. You may also access trusted third party sites such as the Better Business Bureau to find good painters near you.
  • Also make sure that you ask for references from the painter and verify these references.
  • Always make sure you put all your agreements in writing. This should clearly state the amount to be paid for the project and every other important term of the agreement between you and the painter.
  • Get multiple estimates from different painters for the same project before deciding on whom to hire.
  • Do not make upfront payments that exceed 10% of the value of the project and make sure you certify that the work has been satisfactorily completed before making the final payment.

If you happen to end up dealing with a fraudulent painter or if you fall victim to a home improvement scam, you can file a complaint with the Indiana State Attorney General's Office. Complaints can be made online using an Online Consumer Complaint Form or by sending a completed Printable Consumer Complaint Form via mail to

Office of the Indiana Attorney General
Consumer Protection Division
Government Center South,
5th Floor
302 W. Washington Street
Indianapolis, IN 46204