Painters and decorators (except interior decorators) (NOC 7294)

About this job

People in these occupations:

  • work for construction companies, painting contractors and building maintenance contractors
  • may be self-employed
  • should be accurate and detail-oriented.
  • are usually creative with a good understanding of colour and proportion
  • should be comfortable working at heights
Common job titles
  • painter, bridge
  • painter, industrial / commercial
  • painter, industrial / plant maintenance
  • painter, rough - construction
  • painter-decorator, specialized
  • paperhanger
  • painter, bridge
  • painter, industrial / commercial
  • painter, industrial / plant maintenance
  • painter, residential
  • painter, rough - construction
  • painter-decorator, specialized

Earnings

Annual provincial median salary

$45,883

Source: 2016 Job Bank Wage data

Note:Estimated median employment income based on 2016 Job Bank median hourly wage rate (median annual salary = hourly wage rate x 40 (hours per week) x 52.14 (weeks per year))

Provincial hourly rate

  • High
  • Median
  • Low

Source: 2016 Job Bank Wage Report

Duties

Painters and decorators:

  • read specifications to determine the quantities of materials required
  • prepare and clean surfaces using methods such as scraping, sanding, sandblasting, hydro-blasting and steam-cleaning
  • remove old wallpaper and loose paint
  • repair cracks and holes in walls
  • sandpaper and apply sealer
  • mix and thin paint to get desired colour and texture
  • apply paint or other materials, such as stains, lacquer, enamel, oil, varnish, fibreglass, metal coating or fire retardant using brushes, rollers or spray equipment
  • measure, cut and apply wallpaper or fabric to walls
  • assemble and erect scaffolding and swing stages
  • advise customers on selection of colour schemes and choice of wall coverings
  • may provide cost estimates to clients

Work environment

Painters and decorators typically work a standard 40-hour week, with the majority working in the Construction industry. Since work is often project-based, these workers may experience gaps in between projects.

Painters and decorators often work at heights from ladders and scaffolding, and many of the materials used emit hazardous fumes or suspended particles. Safety procedures are followed and safety equipment is used to minimize risks.

Job requirements

Education, training & qualifications

Completion of Grade 10 or equivalent (including English 10, Mathematics 10, Science 10) is the minimum education requirement; however, completion of secondary school is preferred. Other beneficial qualifications include:

  • completion of a three- to four-year apprenticeship program (or a combination of more than three years work experience in the trade and some college or industry courses) for certification by the Industry Training Authority

Certification is not mandatory in British Columbia, but it can offer more well-rounded training and will likely increase work opportunities. Painting and decorating apprenticeships:

  • can be started in secondary school, through entry-level training at colleges and technical institutes, or by direct entry to the workforce
  • require workers to find a sponsor employer who is willing to participate in the program

Painters and decorators are eligible for Interprovincial Standard Endorsement (Red Seal) qualification through the Industry Training Authority. This allows holders to work in any province or territory. Once individuals pass the final examination of their accredited training program, they will achieve certification and will automatically receive Red Seal qualification.

Workers with 8,100 hours of documented, directly related work experience can challenge the Interprovincial Red Seal examination. For more information, please see the Industry Training Authority website at www.itabc.ca.

As of July 1, 2017 when the Canadian Free Trade Agreement (CFTA) came into force, you will not need significant additional training, experience, testing or assessment if your qualifications or certificates are recognized by a Canadian regulatory authority. This applies whether you were trained in Canada or internationally. Learn about labour mobility at www.workersmobility.ca. For information about labour mobility and foreign qualifications recognition, contact the B.C. regulator for your occupation.

Skills

  • Manual Dexterity
  • Spatial Perception
  • Detail-Oriented
  • Object-Oriented
  • Motor Coordination
View skills definitions

For more information about programs offered specifically for this career, visit EducationPlannerBC.

Trades training resources

Visit our trades training page at www.workbc.ca/trades to learn about apprenticeship and trades training in B.C.

Select a region to view regional outlook
Vancouver Island / Coast Mainland / Southwest Thompson-Okanagan Kootenay Cariboo Northeast North Coast & Nechako
Cariboo
Employment in 2016:
230
Average annual employment growth:
0.9%
Expected number of job openings:
100
Kootenay
Employment in 2016:
160
Average annual employment growth:
0.4%
Expected number of job openings:
60
Mainland / Southwest
Employment in 2016:
6,560
Average annual employment growth:
0.4%
Expected number of job openings:
1,910
North Coast & Nechako
Employment in 2016:
70
Average annual employment growth:
N/A
Expected number of job openings:
N/A
Northeast
Employment in 2016:
60
Average annual employment growth:
N/A
Expected number of job openings:
N/A
Thompson-Okanagan
Employment in 2016:
840
Average annual employment growth:
2.4%
Expected number of job openings:
550
Vancouver Island / Coast
Employment in 2016:
1,890
Average annual employment growth:
1.2%
Expected number of job openings:
710

N/A - Data not available

Source: B.C. Labour Market Outlook

Career paths and resources

Career paths

With additional training, painters and decorators are able to transfer their skills to related occupations such as automotive painting.

Experienced workers may advance to supervisory positions or start their own businesses.

Additional resources