Although refreshing your exterior house paint colors can add instant value to your home, it also comes with a hefty price tag. So instead of repainting the entire exterior you can make a few simple, inexpensive changes to add instant resale value and make it the best looking house on the block. Here’s six tricks to update your exterior house paint colors without breaking the bank.
Choosing exterior house paint colors be very intimidating. There are many factors to consider for the exterior, such as roofing color, landscaping, and the style of your house — just to name a few.
Furthermore, painting the exterior of your house is a large financial commitment. You know it will enhance the curb appeal and can instantly boost its resale value, but you may not be able to guarantee a good return on that big price tag.
Well, what if I told you that instead of repainting your entire house, you can make a few simple upgrades while still reaping big rewards when it comes to both curb appeal and resale value?
Great option, right?
As long as I don’t find any maintenance issues — such as major bubbling, cracking, peeling, or fading — this is a solution I often recommend to my consulting clients.
Ok, so let’s get started.
Trick #1: Accent with Window Wraps
If you have a house with nice thick window wraps then going with a shade of white will be a nice accent for any siding color.
On the other hand, if you want to go with colored window wraps, then be sure to choose a color at least three to four shades lighter or darker than the main body color.
If you have small window wraps then it’s best to choose a color that matches the window frame, as this will make your windows look larger (and who doesn’t like big windows?).
Some houses have metal windows and no wraps. In this case your accent will be the facia and any other trim work that’s on the house.
Trick #2: Nail Your Trim and Facia
First, when choosing your trim and facia colors it’s important to include the gutters and downspouts. Gutters and downspouts should be painted and look much better when they match the rest of the trim.
However, gutters and downspouts aren’t an accent! In other words, don’t paint them white. Instead, have them blend in by painting them the same color as what ever they are next to.
If you have shutters, paint them three to four shades away from the primary body color.
If you have a house with lots of trim and it feels too busy, you can paint the corner boards the body color and this will tone it down.
Conversely, if you have a house with a lack of trim then look for any opportunity to add accent colors, such as the deck railing, belly band, and the front door (more on the front door later).
Trick #3: Take Advantage of Your Home’s Natural Character
Some more traditional houses, such as Victorians, have a fabulous amount of trim, for example.
In my opinion, ’tis a shame to use only one color of trim paint on these types of homes. Yes, the more colors you add to your house the larger your bid will be. But, trust me, the finished look is worth it.
Trick #4: Consider Two Body Colors
If your house features more than one type of siding, you’ve just found another wonderful opportunity to add extra color.
Many houses are sided with standard horizontal siding yet feature at least a portion done in cedar shingles, stucco, or contemporary concrete fiber panels. In this case I like to feature one trim color and two body colors.
Putting the brightest or darkest color at the top of the house is a beautiful way to bring the look together. Use a fun color, but not an overwhelming one.
Trick #5: The Front Door Is Your Home’s Statement Piece
The front door is my favorite part of the whole exterior of a house.
The front door is your greeting to your guests and your biggest opportunity to make a statement. This is where you get to show off, but you have to do it carefully.
I love a front door with a bright color. Currently this color nerd (me) is in love with bright yellow doors on grey houses with white trim — it’s my current obsession.
But as I said, you must tread carefully. If you have exposed traditional brick, yellow wouldn’t be the best choice. In that case, I go for a strong navy blue or a dark red. Of course black and white are lovely traditional choices as well.
If well maintained, not left to fade or discolor, a stained door can also be beautiful and complementary to the rest of your freshly painted home.
Trick #6: Don’t Let It Rot
This one might seem to fall into the category of “duh,” but, honestly, when was the last time you really looked at your exterior paint?
The bottom line here is… don’t neglect the exterior of your house. The interior color goes as a matter of aesthetics, but the exterior is subject to the elements and not maintaining it can be a costly mistake.
Most houses need to be painted every 5 to 12 years depending on the location. So if you simply keep up with regular maintenance you’ll be way ahead of the value curve.
Let’s Wrap It Up
Hopefully the simple changes to your exterior house paint colors I’ve outlined here will help get the mental wheels spinning and your color juices flowing.
These basic, low cost updates can provide real bang for your buck, adding instant value to your house and making it the best looking on the block.
And if choosing exterior house paint colors is causing you to put off painting this summer then contact a professional colorist like me.