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  • Writer's pictureUli Smith

Mural Pricing: How Much Does a Custom Mural Cost?

Updated: Apr 25, 2023

Are you a budding muralist trying to figure out how to price your work? Or maybe you're looking to add a pop of color to space and want to know what goes into the cost? Either way, you're in the right place.

There are many factors that can influence the cost of a mural including:

  • Size of the mural

  • Complexity of design

  • Equipment needs

  • Quality of materials used

Below, I will go into detail on how I price my custom murals.

Uli Smith, muralist, painting a cactus mural.

How Much Does a Custom Mural Cost?


An average cost of a mural ranges from $25–$45 per square foot of the area being painted, with a $1,500 minimum.

NOTE: This pricing is very specific to me, as I write this today. These numbers might be different if you are just starting out or super experienced, and you should increase your rates as you progress in your career.

A starting rate of $10/sqft and 1,000 minimum is a reasonable for someone with little to no mural experience, while others might be in the $50/sqft range with a $5000 minimum.

This is what I consider all-inclusive pricing. Everything from design to application in one lump price. Of course, there are a couple exemptions, which I also list below.

What's Included?
  • Design Time

    • Compensation for the time spent designing and revising your design. This can typically take anywhere between 5 to 10 hours, depending on the complexity of the design. The amount of detail, number of colors, and style should all be taken into consideration. Complicated design = higher rate!

  • Admin Time

    • Compensation for the time spent communicating with the client, brand research, and other administrative tasks.

  • Materials and Supplies

    • Paint! Brushes! Painter's Tape! And all the other things that go into making a mural happen. Depending on the needs of the specific mural, you may be using house paint or special mural paints, and the pricing difference should be taken into account when setting your rate. Note that this does NOT include equipment, like a scissor lift– I will address that later.

  • Insurance

    • Cost of General Liability Insurance, whether working with a client that requires it or a residential mural, this is must to protect yourself from accidents like paint spill or injuries.

  • Mural Application

    • Now to the fun part, painting the mural! Whether you are spending a few days or a couple weeks installing the mural matters, so keep in mind the time that will be needed to complete the mural. Recognize that this is both taxing, physical labor and a unique use of your artistic ability– so price accordingly!

What is not included?
  • Equipment

    • If you will need to rent scaffolding, a lift, or other special equipment like a paint sprayers, the cost of this needs to be added on top of the all-inclusive rate!

  • Copyright

    • It is important to know that you retain the copyright of your artwork. If the client wants to use the artwork on merchandise (tote bags, t-shirts, etc.) or for marketing or promotion purposes (social media campaign, in a video, etc.) this is an extra charge!

  • General Repair and Wall Preparation

    • General repair, masonry work, cleaning of the wall is not included and not a service I offer. If the wall needs to be primed or the client requests a clear coat after painting, I will charge extra.

  • Travel Costs

    • Airfare, lodging, and car rentals all should be added on top of the all-inclusive rate.


I will go into the full process in a separate blog, but while we are here talking money, I want to remind you of these two very important things before starting any of the work.

Be sure to always have a signed contract before starting any work.

1) Signed Contract

Never, ever, ever do work without a signed contract. This will be a contract you (yes you) put together and send to the client to sign. Contracts not only protect you, it also protects the client, and ensure both parties are clear on expectations and follow through in their responsibilities.

2) 50% Non Refundable Deposit

Yes, you read that right, require a 50% non-refundable deposit before you start the design. Your time and talent are valuable and you need to insure you will be compensated before putting in the work.


Overall, mural pricing is something you'll get more comfortable doing the more you do it. I hope you leave with the confidence to charge what you are worth. Remember that you have a talent that many people do not, that's why they are hiring you to do it!

Colorful paint cans and paintbrush laid on top

Let me know in the comments if you found this guide helpful or if you have any other questions!

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