May 13

5 Tips for Choosing Exterior Paint Colors


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Giving a home a fresh new look enhances the curb appeal and can increase its value. Exterior paint colors can be used to emphasize architectural features, complement nature, or make a statement in the neighborhood. There are simple tips to help homeowners narrow down the paint color selection to ultimately choose the right color combinations for a home’s exterior.

1. Identify the Style of the Neighborhood

A home's style can aid in choosing house paint colors. The neighborhood can offer suggestions for possible exterior paint colors. If Victorian homes dominate the area, then a bold color will not suffice. If the neighborhood contains more ranch-style homes, an exuberant collection of pastels may not be the best fit. Use the style of surrounding homes as a starting point to choose exterior paint colors.

2. Trust Nature’s Color Combinations

The surrounding landscape of a home can give a lot of clues about what colors will look good on it. Various shades of summer-green can be used for the exterior. The combination of fall colors: red, brown, and golden shades will work well too. A more naturalistic landscape may inspire house paint colors such as seafoam green, pastels, or soft neutrals. Coordinating colors from mother nature will not lead to unseemly exterior paint color combinations.

3. Look to Your Home for Guidance

The existing fixed colors in or outside of a home can be used in the exterior color scheme. This includes the material of the foundation, window trim, or the roof. These can greatly influence the choice of paint colors for the home. Don’t go for a trendy color that does not complement what’s already there.

Consider the color schemes that are already used inside a home and choose exterior paint colors that complement. The color of a home’s furnishings can assist in the selection of paint colors that are used outside.

4. Dark vs. Light 

The size of a home can influence how exterior paint colors appear. Too much exterior dark paint can weigh down the front of a house and make it look small and gloomy. Offset the dark hue with a lighter tone on the accents. Large estates are often painted white. Light colors make a building look larger and emphasizes the details of a home.

5. Don't Underestimate Wood Finishes

Most homes feature some naturally beautiful materials without painting them. Every home has some features that will not be painted. Brick, stone, wood, or vinyl elements on the exterior. Wood stains come in a huge range of hues and can warm-up or cool down exterior paint colors. Keep these materials in mind when choosing colors for the elements you will paint.

Exterior Features to Paint

exterior features
Front Doors

The front door is one house feature where you can have fun with color. A pop of color can be used as the focal point. Navy blue, red, green, or black is good exterior paint colors for front doors. Additional architectural details like shutters should be painted the same shade as the front door.

Architectural Details

Don’t overlook your home’s architectural details when selecting the perfect exterior paint. Paint color can be added to soffits, trim, brackets, molding, window sashes, columns, or porch decks. The colors should complement pre-existing features, including how much light it receives and its relation to the sun.

To emphasize architectural details, choose an accent color that complements or in the same color family, but a different hue. The paint color decision begins with identifying the architectural details of a home. Are these details attractive enough and historically relevant in a way that calls for highlighting them?

Too many colors will overwhelm the exterior of a home, while too few can make your house seem flat and boring. A ranch-style might look best with only two colors, however, a Victorian style home could have up to six paint colors due to the details. Whatever exterior paint color is chosen, color samples are a must. Testing the colors by viewing them at different times of the day will help finalize the paint color decision.

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About Walla Painting

Locally owned and operated, Walla Painting is the go-to painting contractor for residential and commercial needs. Their skilled employees are knowledgeable and trustworthy to provide the best results. Walla also offers color consultations for homeowners who just can't decide.

Walla Painting takes great pride in providing great service to clients. Our ten Angie's List Super Service Awards speaks to the service we offer.


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