Tips for Picking a Perfect Residential Exterior Paint Color

While you may be inclined to choose your favorite color or the hottest color of the day, there are more considerations to keep in mind when selecting the perfect paint color for your home.

Predicting which color will make you happy for the full life of the paint job can be a bit of a crapshoot. Once you’ve narrowed down your choices, imagining how a small chip of paint will look on your entire home is a skill few of us have mastered.

We advise clients on paint color all the time and are happy to share our expertise to help you, as well. When it comes to picking the perfect residential paint color, there are many factors to consider. These are our top five:

Acknowledge the Architecture

Your home is throwing off serious clues to lead you to the right paint color, including the architecture. Homes tend to look their best when the paint color is congruent with the architecture. Case in point:

  • Colonial and Colonial Revival homes have historically been painted a single traditional color on the field and trim, such as white, with colorful accents reserved for things like shutters and doors.
  • Victorian homes aptly referred to as “painted ladies” can carry off a combination of three-to-six colors to show off the intricate accents.
  • Craftsman style homes lean on the earthy side, with deep browns, greens, and reds reigning supreme.
  • Contemporary houses beg for a monochromatic color scheme, with a punch of color on the trim, door, or other accents.
  • Ranch styles homes are commonly grounded in nature, with rich, warm hues of browns and beiges.
  • Cape Cod style houses tend to favor neutral blues and grays, complemented with crisp white trim, shutters, and doors.

Focus on the Fixed Components

Your home may have some fixed accents that you won’t be changing, such as roofing and stonework, that will need to be factored into your color equation. Chances are the colors in these permanent fixtures will lead you to the perfect paint color. If your home has stonework that has cool undertones of grays and blues, find a color in that family. Likewise, if you have red or rust brickwork, a paint color with warm tones might be the best way to go.

Look at the Landscape

Your home should nestle into its natural surroundings, so consider the terrain, plants, and trees surrounding your home, and whether your yard is grass or has some other natural ground cover.

  • Greens, browns, and beiges will harmonize well with natural plant life.
  • Softer pastel colors should be chosen to complement—or contrast with—the colors in your landscape, whether they are cool or warm tones. Blues, greens, and purples will work well if your plant colors are in the same color families, as will pinks, yellows, and peaches. On the other hand, for a punch of opposition, pairing a cool house color, like gray, with warm flowers, like yellow, can provide a much-appreciated relief.
  • Bright paint colors are a bold statement and should not be approached with a timid hand. If your landscaping is also bright and colorful, your home should be, too. Bold and bright is beautiful.
  • Muted paint tones will blend well with whatever landscape selections you have chosen. Consider it a neutral background on which to layer accents of your choosing.
    Ponder Your Neighborhood

Even if you want to set your home apart from the neighbors, you will still want to consider what the rest of the crowd is doing. Take a drive around your neighborhood for inspiration and choose a color that will fit in well with the surrounding homes.

Study the Trends

Painting the exterior of your home is a larger commitment than, say, painting your guest bathroom, and you expect the color to be relevant for a long time. But it’s still okay to take a look at the trends and see if anything catches your eye. Because most people don’t repaint the outside of their homes as often as they paint the inside, exterior paint colors on the market tend to lean neutral so they stand a better chance of remaining in your favor for years to come. And if a bright, bold, color catches your eye—go wild by making a big statement on your front door.

Picking the perfect paint color for your home doesn’t have to be difficult. If you are ready to paint your home but are unsure of how to choose the right color, contact The Painting Company. Our color consultants will be happy to help you find the hue that will make your home look great for years to come. We are located in Arizona, Colorado, and Nevada.

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