Cost of Painting Roof Fascias & Soffits

All you need to know about painting roof fascias and soffits including costs of materials, costs of labour and time frames.

painting fascias and soffits

What the job entails

Typically a professional painter hired to paint soffit and fascia boards will erect access equipment to the correct height, remove existing guttering and rainwater products, remove any flaking or peeling paint from boards, cut out any small patches of rot and fill holes, sand down the boards to provide a suitable painting surface, apply one coat of primer, then two coats of undercoat, followed by a gloss coat. Then refit guttering, lower access equipment, remove all waste material and tidy the site to finish the job.

If you are hiring a tradesman to paint the fascia and soffits, its a good idea to get them to inspect guttering and roof tiles at the same time. If the guttering is old and starting to leak then this is an ideal time to replace it as the guttering has to be removed to paint the soffits in any case.

Painting the soffit and fascia boards as a DIY project is certainly possible if you are comfortable working at height and have access to the necessary safety equipment. Be aware however that painting can be a tricky business at the best of times, but especially when working at height if you are not used to it. Some jobs are simply better left to professionals who have all the right equipment, training and experience.

If the property has soffits made from a cement like material then it may contain asbestos so should not be sanded, scraped, drilled, brushed or prepared for painting in any way as this will potentially release harmful asbestos fibres. Asbestos containing boards should be either replaced by professionals, or painted over directly with masonry paint without disturbing the boards in any way. Do not attempt to prepare the surface as you normally would, at most you can simply remove any dust or cobwebs with a damp sponge before applying the masonry paint directly to the surface.

Currently working with asbestos does not require any sort of license, but you should ensure the tradesperson has had training on how to safely work with asbestos. Most people would much prefer to get any asbestos removed from their property and have maintenance free UPVC boards fitted, or alternatively new timber boards if preferred.

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Cost of Painting Fascias & Soffits

The average cost of painting fascias and soffits is usually in the range of £700-£1000 depending upon what material the boards are made from, how much prep work is required, and what type of house you have.

An experienced painter will usually charge around £150 per day and will quite often bring a trainee with them. Usually the job will be completed within 3-4 days depending upon the weather as the tradesmen will likely paint in the morning and then come back the next day, so around 2-2.5 days of actual work.

Here are a few average costs for replacing a flat roof:

House Type Scaffolding? Avg. Cost Duration
Terraced No £750 3 days
Semi-detached No £800 3 days
Detached No £900 3.5 days
Terraced Yes £950 3.5 days
Semi-detached Yes £1000 3.5 days
Detached Yes £1100 4 days


Cost Breakdown

Individual costs for painting the soffits and fascias of a 2-storey semi-detached house with easy access - Total Cost: £800

25%

Materials
£200

75%

Tradesmen
£600

0%

Waste Removal
£0

FAQ's

If we assume a typical 3 bedroom British semi-detached property, with two people working and the painting is to be done in the summer so each coat will dry quickly. Then the job would take around 4 days (though it would not be 4 complete days of work, but roughly spread over that time period). The first day would be spent removing guttering and rainwater products then preparing timber and applying primer and one undercoat.

On the second day a second undercoat would be applied which would only take a few hours, but nothing else can be done until this coat dries. On the third day a gloss coat will be applied which again will take just a few hours, then on the fourth day when the final gloss coat is dry the guttering and rainwater goods can be refitted and checked for leaks to finish the job. If the work is done in the winter when its colder and damp, the painter will need to leave more time between each coat so the job might be spread over 7-10 days.

The actual painting itself does not take very long, but the preparation work is time consuming, especially if the existing boards are in bad condition with peeling paint and/or rot that has to be removed and filled.
The fascia/soffit and bargeboards are exposed to the terrible British weather 24/7 so need painted every 8 years or so to prevent rot and keep the maintenance costs to a minimum. But the fascia boards tend to rot first as the soffit boards are protected to an extent by the roof overhang, so you may not need to be paint them so often. Tying to save money by avoiding having them painted is a false economy, this will lead to rot which will end up costing even more money, especially if it spreads to the rafter ends. Rotten boards can also cause leaks to the guttering, again causing expensive damage.
Again if we assume a typical 3 bed semi-detached then expect to pay in the region of £700 to £1000. However, if the existing boards are in very poor condition and there is a lot of rot, then either pay extra to have the fascia and soffit boards replaced, or expect higher labour costs for the painters to deal with all the rot and flaking paint. An experienced professional painter will charge around £125-£175 per day, so if existing boards are in poor condition you should weight up the possible costs against replacing the timber boards with UPVC roofline products.
There are a number of paints specifically designed for exterior timber, with Dulux Weathershield exterior gloss being the most popular in the trade. The paints that give the best, longest lasting results are not the cheapest, choosing a cheap paint is a false economy and will likely mean you will just have to paint more often.

If doing the job yourself, try to do the job in the good weather so each coat of paint or primer can dry reasonably quickly, and remember to always remove all guttering so you can apply paint to the full fascia boards surface, do not try and paint around the guttering brackets, this is a waste of time as the boards will rot around the brackets where you cannot get a protective full coat of paint applied, but this is the last area you want rot as that is the only thing holding the guttering up!