Choosing the Right Exterior Paint Colours

Exterior Paint Colours

Many painting blog owners talk about interior design, but what about the exterior? Choosing the right exterior hues not only affects the appearance of your home, but that of the entire neighborhood. You can enhance or take away from you-r curb appeal depending on the paint colour palette you go with. With interior painting, you only have to worry about impressing people you invite into your home. With exterior painting, you’ll have to impress everyone who sees or drives by your home.

How do you know which colours would be ideal?

Here are some factors to consider:

dsc00181Consider elements that are the most difficult to change as the primary factors in your decision making. Unless you plan on doing a complete renovation, these elements include stonework, roof shingles or tile, driveways, pathways, etc. Are there cool undertones (black, blue, or gray)? Or warm undertones (rust, brown, khaki, or beige)? It’s recommended that you go with paint colours that will tie fixed elements together. Trees also play a role in the appearance of exterior paints. Heavily wooded properties will make the colours appear darker due to shade.

Take note of your neighbors’ colour schemes. Go around the neighborhood and look at all of the houses. Does there appear to be a particular colour scheme? Try to blend your house in with the neighborhood. If you don’t like the colour scheme and want something different, you can get away with subtle, unobtrusive differences. You might not want to go with something drastically different, however, as your house might have trouble selling someday.

The style of your home is something you should consider as well. The exterior paint scheme should be appropriate to the architectural style and era.  If you have an exuberant Queen Anne style home, you can select vivid blues, yellows, greens, and even purples. A classic federal style home looks great painted in burnt orange. If you’re unsure which types of hues would be right for your style of home, ask a professional designer or look for inspiration on your favorite painting blog.

dsc00025When you have some idea of which colours you will use, order some samples. Take the samples outside and examine them at different times of the day in different lighting and weather conditions. Hold them up at various angles. Consider ordering small quantities of desired colours and paint a small section of the house where the trim, accents, and body can be viewed together. If you like the look, order more of the same paint. If you don’t, try other colours.

As for colour placement, a safe approach is to choose two tints from the same colour strip. They should just be a few shades apart. Use either one of the shades on the body of the house, and the opposite shade for the trim. Painting lighter colours on a porch will help make a home feel more welcoming.

Don’t make the mistake of accentuating unattractive elements, such as an air conditioning unit, gutters, unevenly placed windows, and so forth. You’ll want to draw attention AWAY from these unsightly features.