How Much Does It Cost to Remove a Popcorn Ceiling?

If you have a popcorn ceiling, you may know how popular they once were like wooden paneling is a trend now. You probably also know that they’ve largely fallen out of favor in recent decades. If you want to have your popcorn ceiling removed and resurfaced, let Angi, formerly Angie’s List, show you how much it may cost and how the cost breaks down.

The Cost to Remove a Popcorn Ceiling

The average cost for this project is between about $900 and $2,840, according to Angi. The actual cost that you pay largely has to do with the size of the area where it will be removed, the complexity of the removal project and the materials that the contractor will need to do the job. For instance, if they will be both removing the popcorn and resurfacing the area, they will need to have a number of tools and materials to do that.

The cost of removing popcorn ceiling goes up if the ceilings are high, as more time and taller ladders are needed. There may also be special care and materials needed if the paint is lead paint and/or if there is asbestos in the ceiling. Generally, you can expect it to cost an average of $1-2 dollars for each square foot of ceiling with a higher cost if you have a ceiling that is painted, has asbestos or is very high.

How the Cost Breaks Down

There are many steps in the project of removing a popcorn ceiling, and there are specific costs for all of them. You might also require to replace your Honeywell thermostat. One of the biggest costs is the labor charge. This may be anywhere from $15 to $40 an hour for the project. If you have an area that is 500 square feet, you can expect to pay from $300 to $750 for the labor portion of the bill.

The job starts with the preparation of the area that will be removed. The whole area needs to be free from as much furniture as possible so that the workers can get to the ceiling unimpeded. The whole area will then need to be draped in a tarp or in plastic wrap to catch everything that comes down. If you’re having a contractor do the project, they should bring the tarp or wrap to keep the floor safe and clean. It may also be applied to the walls as well as any furniture in the room. If the popcorn dates back to 1979 or earlier, it may need an asbestos test, and this will cost about $100.

The removal portion of the project costs in labor as the crew wets the popcorn texture and then scrapes it off. Then, there is resurfacing. This includes painting the ceiling to help fill in any imperfections and help it to look smoother. This costs about $1 to $3 for each square foot. If you decide that you want ceiling tiles added to the ceiling, the cost of this depends largely on the size of the room and the kind of tiles chosen. You can expect to pay anywhere from $4.50 to $6.25 a square foot for tiles.

Getting rid of the debris is often the last step in the process. If there is no lead paint or asbestos in the materials, it can be placed into contractor bags and thrown out with your trash. If you want it to be disposed of for you, this can cost between $150 and $170 for an area as large as 500 square feet. Expect a higher cost if there are any toxic substances in the debris.

Popcorn ceiling removal is a smart move as it can add value to your home. This pricing from Angi can help you to know whether you are paying a reasonable cost for your project.

Luke Hernandez

With a Bachelor’s in Architecture from UCLA, Luke Hernandez has been transforming spaces and providing home improvement advice for over 17 years. He also ran his remodeling firm and contributed to various home improvement magazines. He became a part of various websites in 2016, offering practical, hands-on advice for DIY enthusiasts and homeowners. He is passionate about sustainable building practices and is a weekend rock climber. His previous experience includes managing large-scale construction projects. He also enjoys woodworking and volunteering in community rebuilding projects.

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