How much does it cost to remove wallpaper?

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Price guide

$80 - $2,000

low

$80

median

$700

high

$2,000

Low, median and high bar chart distribuiton

Last Updated on

Whether you're renovating, rearranging, or redecorating your home, installing wallpaper can instantly change the look and feel of each room. Before starting anything, you need to remove your old wallpaper. It usually costs $80 to $700 to remove wallpaper and paint, and the process can be tricky. If you need help removing your old wallpaper, this price guide will help you set the right budget.

Wallpaper removal price list

Detaching wallpaper generally includes removing the adhesive and other residue, sanding, and disposing of waste. Although this is the standard process among handymen, removing wallpaper can be done in several ways.

Wallpaper removal method

Cost

Stripping

$0.60 to $1.50 per square foot

Steaming

$50+

Soaking and scraping

$1 to $3 per square foot

a man removing old wallpaper

Stripping

This is the most common choice for wallpaper removal because of its convenience. When stripping wallpaper, most of the cost is on labor since it doesn't require additional equipment. The cost of stripping wallpaper ranges from $0.60 to $1.50 per ft2

Note that stripping is ideal only for porous wallpaper. If you want to know if your wallpaper is porous, spray water on a small area. If the material quickly absorbs the water, it is porous. Otherwise, the material is most likely non-porous and needs soaking, scoring, and stripping.


Steaming

This usually involves making small holes in the wallpaper and using an electric steamer to loosen the glue. Removing wallpaper through steaming costs $50+, exclusive of labor fees. It can be more expensive, depending on the condition of the wall and wallpaper.


Soaking and scraping

Soaking and scraping are necessary if steaming or stripping isn't enough to remove your wallpaper. This is the most tedious method because it involves making tiny holes in the wallpaper with sandpaper or a roller, dousing it in a special solution, and removing everything stuck on the wall using a scraping tool. Removing wallpaper through soaking and scraping can cost $1 to $3 per ft2.

Factors affecting wallpaper removal service costs

Several things determine the average cost of removing wallpaper. We've listed them to help you prepare for your wallpapering project.

a casually dressed man removing white wallpaper

Room size and layout

This affects the average cost of removing wallpaper. The bigger the room, the longer the job will take, resulting in higher final costs. Moreover, wallpaper removal for rooms with irregular layouts costs more than wallpaper removal for rectangular or square-shaped spaces.


Wallpaper type and condition

Strippable wallpaper is often the easiest to work with because it doesn't need soaking, scoring, or steaming to remove. Non-porous wallpaper and acrylic or vinyl coats are the opposite because water can't easily flow through the material. Additional equipment or advanced technique is needed to remove them.

If your walls have several layers of paper or if paint conceals your current wallpaper, removal costs will be higher. Expect similar prices if your wall, plaster, or drywall needs other repairs.


Additional services

As you evaluate your newly designed home, additional work might come along the way. To help you estimate the total cost, here's a list of other things that might affect your budget.

  1. Painting – A fresh coat of paint on plaster walls can quickly enhance the look of your room, making it look and feel trendy. Applying new wall paint costs around $1 to $6 per square foot.
  2. Cleaning – After a day of stripping and scraping, you can hire cleanup services to help you organize things. The hourly rate is around $25 to $90.
  3. Wall and wallpaper repair – If your walls need some TLC before you add new layers of paint, a handyman can do all the necessary preparations. Expect to pay $40 to $120 per hour.

Post a task for wallpaper removal

Ultimately, if you want to skip the mess and stress of removing layers of wallpaper, a professional can help you! It doesn't have to be time-consuming. Whether you have porous or non-porous wallpaper, you can receive personalized quotes if you post a task on Airtasker.

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FAQs

Textured wallpaper like woodchip is more challenging to remove than strippable wallpaper due to its structure. However, no wallpaper material is too hard for experienced handymen. They can remove woodchip wallpaper by steaming, soaking, and scraping. Woodchip wallpaper removal often costs more than typical wallpaper removal.

If your walls have signs of damage, it's time to remove the wallpaper. However, if your walls are still in good condition, doing so can still improve your home's overall look and feel. With just a fresh coat of paint or a new roll of wallpaper, you can instantly make your room look sophisticated.

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