How to Close Painting Estimates on the Spot

So you land a new painting lead and they ask for an estimate. You carefully consider the job and offer your price. They say they’ll consider it, but they have a few more painters to speak with before they decide.

Then *crickets*

Sound familiar?

Here we will review best practices you can implement today to turn more painting leads into paying jobs. Let’s begin with a basic question…

How to Close Painting Jobs

Before you can start earning money as a painting contractor, you first need to close deals with your potential clients. Even the best painters can only start once a customer agrees to hire them.

On average, your customers will typically seek at least three estimates before they hire a painting company. Most customers plan to take your information and then compare offers from other painters before they sign an agreement for your painting services. However, if you can close on the spot you can avoid this competition altogether.

Closing on the spot requires preparation, making a great first impression, and addressing all possible questions from your potential client. Experienced painters close quickly by following the steps outlined in this article.

Prequalify Interior and Exterior Painting

Painter Checklist

As a painting business owner, it’s essential that you identify your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP). For example, you may want to target customers in a particular salary range, geographic location, or those looking for a specific service, such as cabinet or commercial painting.

Prequalifying customers helps you avoid wasting time on candidates that are simply not a good fit for your painting services. Focusing your marketing efforts to only capture qualified painting leads helps increase the odds of closing a job on the spot.

Introduce Your Painting Services

Everyone who books an estimate with you will have different expectations for their painting project. Determining if you’re a good fit early can help potential clients feel more confident about hiring you, increasing the odds of closing the jobs.

You can show off your business by recommending a visit to your website. Ensure your website includes examples of completed jobs and past projects. Pictures and customer testimonials can help you secure a painting job by putting you a step ahead of your local competition.

We recommend including the following content on your website:

  • Painting skills are best illustrated through high-quality pictures.

  • Equipment and materials. Do you offer environmentally-friendly paints?

  • List all of your painting and maintenance services.

  • Display customer testimonials from past painting jobs.

Those interested in your painting services who fully understand what you have to offer are more likely to convert into paying customers. Invest in your website, it is the frontline of your digital marketing efforts that can drive more painting leads than any other marketing source.

Make a Great First Impression

Professional Painter

First impressions go a long way to closing an interior or exterior painting estimate on the spot. Focus on professionalism from the first conversation with your prospective client, then implement the following steps:

1) Arrive on Time

The professionals know that clients react best if you show up on time for an estimate appointment. Try not to arrive either early or late. Instead, walk up to their door precisely at the scheduled time.

2) Dress for the Job

Your appearance plays a crucial role in securing new painting jobs. Wear professional and clean clothing. Consider a branded shirt – either a polo or button-down – that identifies your company. Pair that with nice slacks and clean shoes.

Wear a name tag that has your company name on it. It doesn’t hurt to add personal flair to your name tag with a friendly sticker or even a smiley face. Be sure to put a smile on your face too!

3) Clear communication

Aside from price, communication is one of the most reported reasons for turning down a painting estimate. For best results consider automated text messages that notify the potential client when you’re on the way to their scheduled estimate request.

4) Show Off Your Resume

As a painter, you should be taking pictures of your residential and commercial painting projects to demonstrate your processes and abilities. You can improve your position at the next estimate by including these pictures in your paperwork.

Consider creating a folder containing images, your contract, customer testimonials, and of course, your estimate. Compile these documents for every estimate. Typically, the painter who shows up with the most information gets the job.

5) Drive a Company Vehicle

Want to look more professional as a painter? Drive a clean and branded vehicle to your prospect’s house to discuss their painting needs. Park close-by so they can see your van or truck, clearly identifying your company and showing off some of the resources and equipment you can offer if they accept your estimate.

To increase your chances of employment, invest in regular maintenance to help keep your vehicle looking great!

Come Prepared to Ask (and Answer) Questions

If you want to secure a painting job, you’ll need to show off your expertise and knowledge of the industry. In many cases, it’s better to let the customer guide the conversation while you prepare to answer questions about:

  • The desired color for the paint job

  • Surface area the customer wants painted

  • The equipment and processes you’ll use to paint

  • Warranties or guarantees

  • Your work schedule/timeline to start their project

Securing a new painting project may require you to speak with multiple people under one roof (think husband and wife). If the job involves an apartment, office, house, or large industrial painting, you can expect different questions than what a residential customer may ask.

In addition to answering questions, an experienced painter also prepares some questions for the prospect, including:

  • When the client expects you to complete the job
  • What kind of paints they want for the project
  • Exactly what surfaces should (and should not) be painted

  • Other professional expectations?

Create a sense of trust by providing answers to any/all questions that may arise. Most homeowners want to hire professional painters who offer an equivalent combination of skill, experience, and reasonable prices. Make their decision easier by arriving prepared to answer and ask questions.

Offer an Estimate Before You Leave

Painting Estimate

If you want to close an estimate on the spot, you need to provide an estimate on the spot. This is one of the most critical tasks you can implement to increase your close ratio. The highest performing painting contractors know you must provide a painting estimate during the initial appointment before you get back in your vehicle.

Failed to close on the spot?

The Art of a Follow-Up Call

Painter Call Tracking

What do the highest performing painting contractors do if they’re unable to close a painting job on the spot? They follow-up!

You can still secure a job even if the client says they want to speak with another painter before deciding who to hire. Before you leave an appointment tell the potential client you’ll give them a call in a day or two to see if they have any other questions. Informing them ahead of time is a courtesy they’ll appreciate.

If the client has yet to decide who to hire and doesn’t have any other questions for you, use the phone call to your advantage. Reiterate your strengths and key points of differentiation (what makes your company better than the competition?) Focus on past customer satisfaction and similar jobs you’ve completed. Take a moment to ask what would make their decision easier, then address their wants/needs/concerns.

Ask for Feedback if You Don’t Land the Job

Even the best painters don’t close every job. They also know the only way to close more jobs in the future is to learn from those that don’t. Request honest answers. Start by asking if there was anything in particular that made them select another painter. Depending on their answers you can dive deeper to gather more actionable information.

Growing your career as a painter requires you to listen to your clients, in addition to those that pass on your services. Use this information to your advantage.


Want to learn more about how the industry’s best professional painters close estimates? Here at Base Coat Marketing, our team of certified marketing professionals are exclusive to the professional painting industry. We provide training and documentation to help our clients increase the likelihood that their clients will pick them, and not the competition. But don’t wait, we are exclusive to only ONE painting company in each region. Give us a call at 888-313-1991 today! 

Austin Houser
Austin Houser
About the Author: As a Digital Marketer and Data Scientist with over a decade of lead generation experience managing a results-driven marketing agency for Professional Painting Companies, Austin Houser is wildly known as a leading Marketing Expert within the Professional Painting Industry.
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