Exterior Paint Colors: Choosing Color For Homes That Work

In spring, we’re all thinking about all things “outdoors”. So, with that in mind, maybe we’re thinking about giving our exteriors something of a makeover too.  When it comes to home exteriors, what are some of the elements to consider for a project like this?

Well, exterior design expert and house-painter Olger Fallas is here to outline some of the most important aspects of bringing an exterior to life this season.


New paint can make your home look brand new, but choosing the right exterior house colors can be a difficult decision. Appropriate colors can make your house look modern and stylish, but the wrong colors can make it look old and outdated.

Consider the design of the house

If your home is from a particular era, you will want to choose a paint combination that fits with the architecture. For instance, Victorian homes used many exterior house colors, but the bright colors of today do not look authentic. Traditional Victorian was actually based on colors that blended with the landscape such as browns, greens and neutrals. What one often sees in Victorian designs, such as the pinks and blues, are what have come to represent the style but are an inaccurate representation.

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Many name brand paint manufacturers have historical paint colors that will look authentic and realistic on the house. They have been researched by experts of historical architecture and verified to be accurate to the time period. This can add value on a house that has a unique period design.

Consider the neighborhood

You do not want your home to stand out from others in a negative way. Not only will it look gaudy and obnoxious, but it will lower the value of the home. Look at the colors of other houses on your street and find a palette that looks good with the surrounding area.

Choose exterior house colors based on the roof

If the roof is visible, it is an important consideration when choosing paint colors. A brown roof will look better with a warm palette, while a gray or black roof will match cool tones.

Select both the main paint color and accent colors together

Accent colors for areas such as the trim and the shutters around windows should work well with the main color. You might end up using two different accent colors; choose tones from the same color strip if you are in doubt. Don’t forget about fading when selecting exterior house colors. If you choose a color that is too light, it will fade out and look like a dull white.

Weather will change the shade of a color over time. Make sure your color has enough gray or brown in the tone to keep it from looking garish and bright. The exception to this rule is in areas where bright colors are common.

Go bold with accent color

If you want to try a bright color, use it on the trim. White is a popular color for houses today because it works well with any trim color. This is the area where you can experiment without making the house look unattractive.

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Use the right lighting for your choice

New Jersey house painters like myself will often paint a small section and allow homeowners to look at it before finishing the house. This allows you to see the color in the shade and sunlight and know if you will be able to live with it. The color can vary by several shades from what you see on a paint strip. Select your colors in the same lighting of your house. You may want to view them at different times of day to make sure you like them before you commit.

Don’t forget the door

The front door is the focal point for the outside of the home like a fireplace would be the focal point for the inside. The color of the door does not need to be the same as other trim, but it should work well with the other colors. One of the most popular choices that New Jersey house painters work with is red. It draws your eye to the door and provides a warm welcome for visitors.

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Since most people only paint a house once in their life, you want to choose exterior house colors that you will enjoy for years to come. They should be colors that you enjoy and ones that will add value to your home.


Thanks, Olger

Olger Fallas is the owner of a house painting and carpentry company in Maplewood, New Jersey. His favorite project is restoring the exteriors of century old homes. Follow him on Google.



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