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There’s no doubt that we all have our preferred colors, whether it’s for our cars, our clothing, or our homes. However, there are colors that are favored over others--colors that work well in any environment.
When it comes to painting the inside and outside of your home, good colors decisions can make your home appeal to more buyers and get you higher offers.
In today’s post, we’re going to talk about which colors are ideal for your home if you’re hoping to increase its purchase value.
General rules for choosing paint colors
While there are specific colors and techniques for each room of a home, there are also general rules that apply to painting in general.
First, note that it is pleasing to the eye if a room transitions from dark to light vertically--the floor being the darkest, the wall color in the middle, and the ceiling the brightest. While we can’t say with certainty why that is, a good guess would be because that’s house things usually appear in nature, with the sky being the brightest thing in your line of sight.
Next, understand that painting with darker colors and matte finishes may make a room appear darker and smaller. Glossy or semi-gloss paint with bright colors will reflect more light and make a room look and feel more spacious.
You may have noticed some homes tend to have a continuity to them that is hard to explain. There’s a good chance this is because of the colors used. Having a color palette for your home that uses different shades of a color is a good way to tie the whole home together
Finally, while there are many colors that will work in various rooms of the home, blue happens to be the most preferred color to new buyers. It’s a safe bet that a light blue will work well if you’re at a loss for what color to paint a room.
Next, let’s take a look at each part of your home to find the best colors to use.
Exterior. Choosing exterior colors, such as your siding, doors, and trim can be a difficult decision for most homeowners. It’s a good idea to stick with colors associate with the architectural style of your home. Also, be sure to take note of the colors in your neighborhood--you don’t match your neighbors completely, but you don’t want to stand out too much either. A good way to differentiate your home is to use a bold accent color on your front door or shutters.
Kitchen. The kitchen should be a warm and welcoming place. Colors like white, gray, and light red all work well in the kitchen. Choose a color that doesn’t overshadow your appliances and cabinets--let those be the bold colors of the room.
Bedrooms. Bedrooms, especially children’s rooms, are a place where you have more room to experiment with fun colors. Nearly any color can work in a bedroom, even darker colors, if complemented by light-colored decorations and furnishings. If your master bedroom has a bathroom connected to it, try using the same or a color that will complement the bedroom.
Home office. Offices are surprisingly versatile. Many different styles work for different people and their vocations and hobbies. If your home office has a classic look--wooden desk, gold lamps, etc.--a brown or tan color will work well. However, if the office is more modern and creative, a white, gray, or bold green or blue are fitting.
Bathroom. For the main bathroom, use a bright color as bathrooms tend to be one of the smaller rooms in a home. Bright colors are also easier to work in the mirror by to improve lighting.
Do the walls of your home ever feel bland and uninviting? What you need for your home is to add depth to the walls. Everything from the colors of the walls to what you place on them helps to give your rooms a feeling of sophisticated complexity.
Try Using Contrast On Your Walls
If you choose a dark color for your walls, you can use bright colors as a contrast to bring out the prominent features of the room.
Use Texture On Your Walls
You don’t have to rely on paint to color your walls. It’s a good idea for you to use some tapestry or cloth and hang it on the walls to help add texture and depth to a room.
Reflect On The Room
Using mirrors can help to make any room appear bigger. Mirrors are deceiving in a way, but when placed strategically, they can really add a lot to a room. Allowing for reflections in the room also adds depth and a larger feeling to the space,
Don‘t Make A Space Too Busy
Avoid using a lot of colors in a room. While contrasting colors add something special to a space, bright, mismatched colors will only make you dizzy.
Make Use Of Tile
Particularly in kitchens and bathrooms, tile can help to add some depth to the space. Your kitchen can be painted a lovely color and finding tiles to match for a backsplash can really help the room to stand out. Even the color grout that you use can help add complexity to a room. If you have brick, wood, or any kind of stone present in a room, be sure to help those features stand out. The best way to approach design sometimes is to take what you see in nature and bring it into your space. From earth tones to highlighting the natural features in your home, you can really make your home feel well-rounded from the inside out.
Try Painting The Walls Different Colors
There’s no rule that says you need to paint a room all one color. Often, you can add a lot to a room just by having that one accent wall. Putting the piece of furniture that will be the focal point of the room on the accent wall can really bring out the features of the room. If your color scheme is leaning towards blues and whites, for example, paint each wall white except for one. Choose an alluring shade of blue for the accent wall. Be sure that your furniture matches with whatever wall color scheme that you choose as well.
Whether you’re recreating a room completely, or simply re-purposing what you have, it’s easy to make your design work for you and provide complexity and depth.
The trim is one of the trickiest parts of a home to be properly painted or stained. There’s many steps that must be taken for the trim to be painted well including:
- Nailheads must be set below the surface of the wood
- Holes need to be filled and sanded
- Damaged wood must be repaired and replaced
- Old paint and varnish must be removed
The work that needs to be completed on both the walls and the trim should be done before you begin painting and staining. There’s no rule as to when you should paint the trim -before or after the walls are painted- the only thing that matters is that the prep work should be done before the painting step begins.
When you’re stripping the surface, wear protective glasses along with a dust mask. The chemicals that you’re using can contain toxic fumes. The room needs to be ventilated properly as well. Wear gloves to keep the chemicals off of your hands. You’ll also protect your hands from splinters.
As an additional precaution, when you’re painting, you’ll want to test for lead. Many homes may have lead paint in them, especially those that were built prior to 1978. You can remove lead paint yourself if you take the right precautionary steps, but in some cases, you may need a professional to do the job.
Get The Trim Ready For Painting
Once the trim has been scraped down, you’ll want to wash the surface of the trim with a mild household cleaner. Then, rinse it with water or a water and vinegar mixture and let the trim dry. Scrape any remaining loose paint from the trim.
Sand The Trim
Use a small flat sander to sand the walls or woodwork. For more contoured surfaces, try to use a flexible sanding block. These flexible sanders work great for more curved surfaces.
Have A Strategy
If you’re a less experienced painter, it will be easier if you paint the trim first. This will make it much smoother to prepare the details and paint all of the details. Once you paint the trim, mask it off with painters tape. This will prevent any splattering from occurring while you’re painting of the walls.
Tips For Painting The Trim
Once you complete all of the prep work for painting the trim, use a primer. Next, topcoat the trim using some kind of a latex or enamel. Remember that glossy surfaces accentuate the woodwork in a home, making it stand out from the walls. Moldings, doors and windows require a higher sheen than a wall since there’s more contact on these surfaces.
Painting trim can be challenging, but when you do it safely and in the right order, your painting job will go much more smoothly.