Popcorn Ceiling Removal Cost

By PropertyClub Team
Oct 3rd 2022
Removing popcorn ceiling costs around $2,000 on average, but the price can vary a lot. Some households can expect to pay less than $1,000, while in other cases, it can go up to $5,000, especially if more specialized work is required or you insist on replacing the ceiling with expensive materials. Generally, can expect to pay between $1 to $3 per square foot, depending on the specific factors of your case.

hash-markFactors That Influence the Cost of Removing Popcorn Ceiling

  • Ceiling Size
  • Asbestos Removal
  • Replacement Materials Cost
  • Professional Services

Ceiling Size

The most obvious factor that influences the cost of removing a popcorn ceiling is the size of your ceiling. You will typically pay per square foot, so the larger the area, the more expensive it will come out in the end. It’s not always just about the size, though.

If some of your rooms have an unusual shape, this could also add to the cost of popcorn ceiling removal, especially if workers have to constantly set up everything all over again when moving between the individual segments of each room.

Asbestos Removal

If your popcorn ceiling is old, it’s very likely to contain asbestos. Even though the material is largely banned today, the ban didn’t apply retroactively in many cases, meaning that asbestos is still present in various parts of buildings all over the country.

Experts will usually charge more for removing popcorn ceilings containing asbestos due to the additional health hazard. They will need to use specialized protective equipment and put in extra effort to ensure that the job is done safely. Usually, popcorn ceiling removal takes more time in these cases as well.

Replacement Materials Cost

Replacing the popcorn ceiling with something else will also increase the price, depending on what materials you’ve chosen. Painting over the evened-out ceiling is the cheapest option. You can also cover it with wood or other materials, but be prepared to pay more for the job in those cases.

If you can source the materials yourself, that will usually save you some money as opposed to purchasing them through the contractors you’ve hired. Most contractors add a markup to the materials they use for a job, especially if they don’t normally keep them in stock.

Professional Services

And of course, you have to account for the price of the removal specialists you’ll be using as well. The market varies a lot in this regard, and some companies will charge you several times more than others. Taking the time to research different contractors in detail can save you a good chunk of money. Of course, going for the cheapest contractors you can find is usually not the best option, at least if you want to see the job done as quickly and painlessly as possible.

hash-markIs It Worth It to Remove Popcorn Ceiling?

It's usually worth removing popcorn ceiling, but it depends on several factors. First, obviously, is how you feel about it. Some people like the extra texture it adds to a room’s aesthetics. Others like to keep their ceilings as clean and smooth as possible.

There’s also the health factor – if your popcorn ceiling was installed decades ago when asbestos was still an acceptable building material, you might want to get it removed simply to give yourself some peace of mind that you’re not living in a hazardous environment.

hash-markDoes Removing Popcorn Ceiling Increase a Home’s Value?

Yes, removing popcorn ceiling can increase a home's value. Not just if it contains asbestos, though that will certainly give the price a nice boost. Popcorn ceiling is a more niche type of decoration, and not all homeowners like it. While some might enjoy its appearance, they are still in the minority.

This means that removing popcorn ceiling will, on average, raise your home’s appeal in the eyes of most potential buyers. Market research also shows that homes without popcorn ceilings tend to go for a little more than homes with similar properties that do utilize it.

Data is quite limited, though, and it’s hard to draw any real conclusions here. But since a portion of your home’s value will come from personal opinion, you certainly can’t go wrong with removing your popcorn ceiling if you want to improve your chances.

hash-markRemoving Popcorn Ceiling Cost Considerations

Removing popcorn ceiling can be a great way to increase your home value and spruce up its aesthetic appeal. You can even remove popcorn ceiling yourself to save money, assuming there are no special circumstances involved, like asbestos. If your ceiling is older or if you want to cover it up with more expensive/advanced materials, working with a professional contractor is highly recommended. In most cases, paying for their services will still end up cheaper than doing the job yourself when you factor in the time it would take you to do it properly.

hash-markPopcorn Ceiling Removal Cost Bottom Line

Removing popcorn ceiling can be expensive, but it's usually worth it, especially if you want a new more modern aesthetic or if you're removing older popcorn ceiling that has asbestos in it. Besides having a safer and more modern-looking home, you can also expect to recoup your investment when you sell the home, as buyers tend to prefer homes without popcorn ceiling. 

hash-markPopcorn Ceiling Removal Cost FAQ

Is it cheaper to remove popcorn ceiling or to cover It?

Removing popcorn ceiling can be cheaper or more expensive than covering it, depending on various specific factors. If you just want to quickly scrape off the old ceiling and paint it over, this will often be cheaper than covering it, as long as asbestos is not involved. On the other hand, covering your popcorn ceiling with something expensive like high-end wood can make the job significantly more expensive. And in the end, you might still have to remove it one day.

Do you need a professional to remove popcorn ceiling?

It’s often possible to remove popcorn ceiling on your own, provided you have the right tools. Just make sure to perform an asbestos inspection beforehand to ensure that you’re not about to breathe in anything harmful. If your popcorn ceiling does contain asbestos, hiring a professional is often preferred.

How can I minimize the cost of professional popcorn ceiling removal?

If you want to get the best possible deal on your popcorn ceiling removal, you should try to do as much as you can on your own before hiring professionals. Get the room prepared, lay down protective covers over the furniture, and scrape out any bits of the ceiling that you can comfortably get to on your own. Remember what we mentioned earlier though – if your popcorn ceiling contains asbestos, you should leave the whole job in the hands of qualified professionals.