How Much Does It Cost to Stain Wood Trim?

Typical Range:

$1,972 - $10,065

Find out how much your project will cost.

Cost data is based on research by HomeAdvisor.

Updated February 1, 2022

Reviewed by Andy Kilborn, Expert Home Building and Remodeling Contributor.

Written by HomeAdvisor.

With the average cost to stain wood trim types being $3.50 per linear foot, homeowners can expect to pay $200 to $500 for a room with 100 linear feet of trim, for an average cost of $350. Springing for finishing labor can increase the project cost. Homeowners may also pay to remove the existing finish before applying a new finish.

Average Cost to Stain Wood Trim

Average Cost$350
High Cost$500
Low Cost$200

Wood Trim Staining Material Price

Material costs for staining wood trim range from $120 to $200 for a room with 100 linear feet of trim. This typically includes:

  • Oil-based, semi-transparent stain with sealer: $90–$175

  • Basic materials for repairs/touch-ups, like paintbrushes, painter’s tape, ladders, etc.: $15–$20

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Wood Trim Staining Labor Cost

While some wood trim interior painters near you may charge by the hour, most charge per linear foot, averaging $3.50 per linear foot.

Staining 100 feet of wood trim usually requires three to four hours of billable time or $110 to $140 at an average hourly rate of $35. Costs for planning and acquiring materials are included in hourly and project quotes.

Full labor on a staining job includes:

  • Preparing and setting up

  • Removing and masking hardware

  • Cleaning, scraping, and sanding the trim

  • Applying stain

  • Applying a clear coat

  • Cleaning up

Cost to Stain Interior Trim

Interior trim staining typically costs $2 to $4 per linear foot, or $200 to $400 for a room with 100 linear feet of trim. Contractors often charge higher rates for staining interior versus exterior trim due to the preparation and attention to detail needed.

Interior doors and window frames also add to the cost of a staining project because they significantly increase the number of linear feet.

Crown molding and casements cost $2 to $3.50 per linear foot, or $200 to $350 for 100 linear feet of trim. The premium is owed to the level of detail needed during preparation and application. Custom molding often takes longer to stain due to its complex edges and indentations.

Cost to Stain Exterior Trim

Staining exterior trim costs $2 to $3 per linear foot, or $200 to $300 for 100 linear feet of trim with labor and materials combined. Staining for tough-to-reach features like soffits, eaves, and dormers often come with a "specialty" add-on charge of $1 to $2 per linear foot due to the added difficulty. The same is true for elevated areas like roofs, awnings, and second- and third-story windows.

Wood Trim Staining Cost Factors

With prices for staining wood trim are based on linear feet, having more trim in a home increases the cost for this project. However, room size isn't the only factor that determines the cost. Rooms with several doors and windows will be more expensive to stain because each entry point adds a significant amount of linear feet.

Unfinished trim is less expensive to stain since removing paint from trim molding ranges from $2 to $6 per linear foot. If it's necessary to remove paint from the trim molding, the process can take up to seven hours for a 100-square-foot bedroom, totaling $200 to $600.

Trim height can also influence the price. Estimates often account for trim ranging from 3 inches to 5 inches tall. Add-on costs may apply for longer trim to account for the extra time and materials.

Cost to Stain Wood Trim Yourself

When staining wood trim on your own, the cost for materials is $1 to $1.75 per linear foot. Labor costs typically make up the bulk of the cost of a trim-staining project, so you can expect to save at least $175 by handling the project yourself.

DIY vs. Hire a Staining Pro

Choosing between DIY or hiring a pro comes down to time. A professional can handle the process of taping, repairing, preparing, priming, staining, and cleaning up quickly. Many homeowners prefer to have staining done in one fell swoop so they can use a room within a reasonable amount of time. Also, a DIY job can lead to mistakes, like staining damage to the walls and floors, leading to costly repairs.

“When staining trim, it's very important to make sure proper masking is done, so the stain doesn't damage other surfaces like your walls or floors,” says Andrew Kilborn, Angi Expert Review Board member and owner of Andy’s Handyman.

FAQs

Can you stain painted trim?

While it's possible to stain over paint, this won't re-establish the authentic wood-grain look. It'll be necessary to remove paint on a wood trim using various processes like scraping, cleaning, and sanding to stain wood authentically.

What product is used to stain wood trim?

Product recommendations vary based on the area where you apply the stain. Typically, pros use an oil-based, semi-transparent stain with sealer on wood trim.

Do contractors charge for staining trim based on the size of the room?

The cost to stain wood trim is usually based on the linear feet of trim being stained. Room size doesn't necessarily determine cost because rooms with more doors and windows often have more linear trim than closed-off rooms.

What projects should I do at the same time when I’m staining my wood trim?

Some other projects to consider when staining trim include:

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