What Is The Difference Between Painter And Decorator

What Is The Difference Between Painter And Decorator? (Explained)

Painters and decorators are both skilled tradespeople in the home improvement industry.

But they are not the same. Their focus, skills, and services are very different.


In this post, I’ll shed some light on the difference between painter and decorator including their skills, education, training and costs.


Plus, I’ll help you decide when you should hire who.


Painter Vs Decorator

Here are the main differences between a painter vs decorator:


BTW, also check out our Geelong Painters and Decorators service.


What Does A Painter Do?

Painters focus on preparing the surface and applying paint.


They deal with both interior and exterior paint jobs, working on walls, ceilings, doors, etc… And they might do some preparatory work like caulking, spackling, or patching holes before painting.


Painter Vs Decorator


However, their main job is to apply paints, stains, and coatings.


They’re skilled at choosing the right paint, prepping surfaces correctly, and using the best techniques to make sure the paint goes on smoothly and lasts a long time.


And they can work together with decorators too.


What Does A Decorator Do?

Decorators have a broader range of skills that go beyond just painting.


While they might also take on paint jobs, they specialize in things like wallpapering, creating unique finishes, painting murals, faux painting, and other decorative techniques.


So they can take on more complex redesign projects.


Decorators might also offer services like  color consulting, space planning, and finish selection.


Their artistic skills allow them to take on unique treatments like textured metallic finishes, Venetian plaster, and custom stenciling too.


Also Read: Can You Leave Primer Unpainted


Education And Training

Most painters learn their trade through on-the-job training and apprenticeships.


Education And Training


They don’t need formal schooling, but they do need to grasp the right ways to prep surfaces, handle painting tools, and apply various paints, primers, and finishes.


Safety protocols are also a big part of their training.


On the other hand, decorators go through apprenticeships and practical training too, but many of them have more formal education.


They might have studied design, fine arts, or color theory, and some even hold degrees in interior design or decoration.

Their training covers more decorative techniques, finishes, and design principles.


Licenses And Certification

Licensing requirements for painters and decorators depends on the local jurisdiction.


Painters usually must have a contractor’s license to provide services.


Decorators, on the other hand, may have additional certifications related to specific finishes or techniques they specialize in, such as faux painting or wallpapering.


Cost Differences

Painters tend to be more affordable for basic interior and exterior paint jobs.


Their rates reflect the straightforward nature of their work.


Decorators typically charge more given their broader skill set, the bespoke nature of their services, and the specialized materials they use.


Cost Differences


Paint jobs may start at AUD $40/hour while decorators may charge twice that or more.


But the quotes will depend on the specifics of each project.


However, for a complex project, the investment in a decorator’s vision can be worthwhile.


Also Read: How Much Do Painters And Decorators Charge In Geelong?


Should I Hire A Painter Or A Decorator?

If you simply need a fresh coat of paint or a basic paint job done, hiring a professional painter is the best option.

They’re experts at prepping surfaces, priming, and applying paint.


But for projects with design changes, special finishes, or artistic touches, you’ll want a decorator. They’re the ones with the skills for more intricate work.


And if you’re looking for a complete room makeover with new finishes, flooring, curtains, and furniture, a decorator should be able to handle everything from start to finish.


Bottom Line

Painters and decorators both improve the appearance of homes, but offer different services.


Painters are best at applying paint, while decorators specialize in decorative techniques and design.




Can A Decorator Paint My Walls?

Yes! Decorators can paint in addition to all their other skills.


I Have A Big Crack In My Wall. Can A Painter Fix It?

Painters can usually handle small cracks and holes. For bigger repairs, you might need a handyman before the painter arrives.


I Just Want To Repaint My Living Room. Do I Need A Decorator?

No, you probably don’t need a decorator if you just want to repaint your living room. A painter is the perfect choice for a simple paint job. They’ll get the job done efficiently and affordably.

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