Painters and decorators apply paint, wallpaper and other finishes to interior and exterior surfaces of buildings and other structures. They are employed by construction companies, painting contractors, building maintenance contractors, or they may be self-employed.

Main duties 
Painters and decorators perform some or all of the following duties: 

  • Read specifications to determine quantities of materials required
  • Prepare and clean surfaces using methods such as scraping, sanding, sand-blasting, hydro-blasting and steam-cleaning; remove old wallpaper and loose paint; repair cracks and holes in walls; and sandpaper and apply sealer
  • Mix and thin paint to obtain 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 gates
  • Advise customer on selection of colour schemes and choice of wall coverings
  • May provide cost estimates to clients.

Employment requirements 

  • Completion of secondary school is usually required.
  • Completion of a three- to four-year apprenticeship program or
  • Over three years of work experience in the trade is usually required to be eligible for trade certification.
  • Interprovincial trade certification (Red Seal) is also available to qualified painters and decorators.

Additional information 

      • Progression to a supervisory position is possible with experience.

Red Seal trade certification allows for interprovincial mobility.