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How to Select Exterior Paint Colors for Your Home

By on November 12, 2018

Unlike your home’s interior colors, choosing your exterior paint is more complicated than just choosing which shade is perfect for your house. There are many considerations a home owner must think about before selecting a paint color—will it make their house stand out? Will it blend in? Moreover, other parts of the house should also be evaluated—the landscaping, roofing, etc.

Here are some tips on how you can choose and follow a color scheme that works both for your style and for your home’s surroundings and environment.

Plan around the elements that are hardest to remodel

Professional contractors always recommend to remodel around a part of the house or a room that is not easy to change or replace. Unless you’re doing a complete renovation, surfaces such as roof shingles or tiles, stonework, pathways and driveways should be one of the biggest considerations when choosing your home’s new exterior paint color.

Look for undertones between them that might inform your palette. Are they warm toned (beige, brown and rusty reds) or cool toned (gray, blue and black)? Consider paint colors that will tie these fixed elements together that will blend in with each other rather than contrasting and clashing.

Consider your home’s architectural style and era

Designers and contractors say that certain architectural styles have colors that are perfect for it. To know what will suit your house’s design, you can consult with your chosen home exterior contractor, or do some research. In fact, many paint manufacturers offer collections of historically accurate colors, which can be an excellent springboard for your palette.

However, keep in mind that you don’t have to follow and adhere strictly to historical guidelines unless codes for your home and neighborhood specify otherwise, but they are guides for a reason. Tweak it a little bit for your liking.

Choose three or more different paint shades

In design, an exterior paint has three essential and major parts you have to think about: field color, which dominates; accent color, which brings doors, shutters and other smaller areas to life; and trim color, used for window and door casings, roof edging, railings and other trim work.

Ideally, the trim color should contrast strongly with the field color. Designers suggest that if your main hue is dark, consider classic white trim or another pale shade. In contrast, a light field color can look stunning with darker trim, which could serve as a crisp outline of the details of your home.

Don’t rely on paint chips alone

Paint chips may look good while you’re holding it, but results can be drastically different when you start applying it on your home exterior. Just like interior colors, exterior shades can vary significantly from the way they appear on the chip. And because painting an exterior is a bigger undertaking than simply painting a room, you’ll want to get them right the first time. There are many factors why colors may manifest differently—light or sun exposure, contrast from other light sources, your house’s location, and even the surface of your exterior.

What you can do just to make sure you’ll like the outcome is buy a quart of paint and test it on an inconspicuous area of your home. Study it at various times of day (when the sun is high on the sky, during sunset, and during gloomy days) and under different weather conditions. How does it change with the light? Road testing it is the only way to determine for sure if you’ll be happy with it for years to come.

Giving your home an external paint job is one of the easiest (and cheapest) ways of giving your home a makeover. With the proper knowledge on how to choose the best paint color for your home, it can make a big difference without you spending a lot of money and exerting a lot of effort in remodeling and renovation.

 

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