Painting & Wall Covering Contractors

Industry Profile Report

Dive Deep into the industry with a 25+ page industry report (pdf format) including the following chapters

Industry Overview Current Conditions, Industry Structure, How Firms Operate, Industry Trends, Credit Underwriting & Risks, and Industry Forecast.

Call Preparation Call Prep Questions, Industry Terms, and Weblinks.

Financial Insights Working Capital, Capital Financing, Business Valuation, and Financial Benchmarks.

Industry Profile Excerpts

Industry Overview

The 35,700 painting and wall covering contractors in the US apply paint, stain, coatings, and wall coverings to walls, buildings, bridges, and other structures. Companies may specialize in a particular type of application, such as residential, industrial, or decorative painting. Other services include pressure washing, deck finishing, wood staining, drywall finishing, and exterior waterproofing/sealing.

Risk Of Injury And Illness

Workers are constantly working at heights that require ladders, scaffolding, lifts, or harnesses.

Dependence On The Construction Industry And Economy

Demand for painting and wall covering services is closely tied to the health of the construction industry, which is influenced by the state of the economy.

Industry size & Structure

The average paint and wall covering contractor operates out of a single location, employs 6 workers, and generates about $700,000 annually.

    • The paint and wall covering contractor industry consists of about 35,700 establishments that employ about 207,600 workers and generate about $25 billion annually.
    • The industry is highly fragmented; the majority of firms are small, independent operators. Many painting and wall covering contractors are self-employed.
    • Large companies, such as the Brock Group, offer industrial painting as part of a larger portfolio of services.
                            Industry Forecast
                            Painting & Wall Covering Contractors Industry Growth
                            Source: Vertical IQ and Inforum

                            Recent Developments

                            Mar 19, 2024 - Paint, Coating Price Growth Eases
                            • Producer prices for paint, coatings, and adhesive manufacturers were flat in Q4 2023 compared to the same period in 2022, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). However, BLS data show that painting and wall covering contractors’ materials costs are up significantly compared to pre-pandemic levels. Employment in the painting and wall-covering contracting industry increased slightly in Q4, year-over-year, while painting and wall-covering wages saw nominal growth over the same period, according to the BLS.
                            • Total nonresidential building construction spending is projected to rise 8% in 2024 over 2023, according to FMI’s first-quarter 2024 North American Engineering and Construction Outlook. At growth of 18%, manufacturing will lead 2024 nonresidential building construction, followed by lodging (+12%), educational (+10%), and healthcare (+8%). Some other segments of the nonresidential building sector face headwinds, including high interest rates, inflation, and tighter lending standards. These pressures and high vacancy rates will reduce office project spending by 2% in 2024. Commercial project spending is forecast to decline by 4% in 2024. High interest rates will also challenge the housing market. Single-family construction spending is forecast to drop 5% in 2024 after falling 14% in 2023. Spending for multifamily is expected to decline 15% in 2024 after projects in development peaked at 1 million units in mid-2023. Home improvement project spending will drop 4% in 2024 from 3% growth in 2023.
                            • The Dodge Momentum Index (DMI) decreased by 1.4% in February 2024 to 180.5 (2000=100), down from the revised January reading of 180.5. The Momentum Index is a monthly measure of the first (or initial) report for nonresidential building projects in planning, which has been shown to lead construction spending for nonresidential buildings by a full year. On a monthly basis, the commercial planning component dropped by 2.3%, and institutional rose by 0.1%. Dodge’s associate director of forecasting, Sarah Martin, said, “Weaker office and healthcare planning constrained nonresidential planning in February. However, the Index remains 25% higher than where it was just two years ago. Most other categories showed growth over the month and Dodge remains optimistic that nonresidential planning will stay elevated throughout 2024 alongside rising confidence in 2025 market conditions.”
                            • Home remodeling spending is expected to weaken in 2024 but may hit bottom near the end of the year, according to the Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity (LIRA) report released in January by the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard. Homeowner improvements and repairs are expected to decrease by 1.2% to $464 billion in the first quarter of 2024 compared to Q1 2023. In the second quarter of 2024, remodeling spending will drop to $454 billion, down 6.3% from Q2 2023. Spending will then decline to $452 billion in Q3 2024, down 7.8% from Q3 2023. However, in the fourth quarter of 2024, year-over-year spending is forecast to drop 6.5% to $450 billion. The Joint Center expects that by the end of the year, improvements in homebuilding activity and lower interest rates may help slow the steady decline in remodeling spending.
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