Cheap Ways to Repaint Your Fence

a man spray painting a fence

The fence around your home is one of the first things anyone visiting or passing by your property will see. Putting some attention into its upkeep and design demonstrates the pride you take in your living space, and there's no need to break the bank while freshening up your curb appeal.

Look for Used Paint Online

You might be surprised how many people offer discounted or even free paint on sites like Craigslist and Kijiji. Ideally, you may find someone in your neighborhood offering supplies you can just go pick up. Or you could find someone on the other side of the world who can ship you their used paint for a reasonable fee.

Given how expensive new paint is getting these days, it makes sense to at least check the internet to see if you could go the used route first. If you end up having to combine different orders, try alternating the colors you use on different parts of the fence, or just mix all the paints together for a uniform hue.

Consider Spray Paint

Check out your local hardware stores for suggestions from staff about their least expensive paint options. Spray paint is typically significantly cheaper than canned equivalents, and can cover the same area for a fraction of the cost.

a man and a boy paint a fence

Get Your Friends and Family to Help You Paint

Hiring someone to help you paint will dramatically inflate the cost of the job, and your time is valuable, too. Speed up the process and cut down the expense by reaching out to some friends and family.

Completing a project together is a great way to spend a little quality time while accomplishing a necessary task. Skip the $2,000 labor cost and invest $20 in pizza instead.

Fence Painting Tips

Prep Your Brushes - If you don't go with spray paint, a good roller brush with a paint tray will help you power through your painting quickly. If you're staining, or covering intricate, angled surfaces, you'll need at least one hand brush, too. Buying your brushes ahead of time from an online retailer will save you from paying the hardware store premiums. Use the power of patience to keep costs as low as possible.

Prime or Stain - If you're working with a wood fence, it's a good idea to start with an exterior acrylic wood primer. If you're going with a natural stain, apply that instead.

a person staining a wooden fence

Clean and Cover the Area - Move anything that would get in the way before you start, so you're not trying to handle obstacles when you have paint on your hands. Sweep away any debris, and lay down drop sheets or newspaper to protect the area beneath the fence. Tape or cover any poles or other objects you don't want getting spattered.

Clean the Fence - For best results, wipe your fence down with a damp cloth and give it a light sanding with rough paper before you prime, especially if it's been unattended for awhile.

Paint Early - Depending on the length and size of your fence, you should be able to knock this project out in under a day. Aim to start early to avoid the worst of the mid-day sun, and don't forget to wear sunscreen or a hat if you do get stuck painting through the brightest hours.

How Often Should You Repaint?

In general, you should repaint your fence about every two to three years. The exact schedule will depend on the climate conditions where you live, and other factors like basic wear and tear from weather, plants, and animals. If your fence is protected by an overhang, such as a balcony or veranda, your paint job should last longer.