7 Tips to Help You Choose Paint Colors for Your Home
Unfortunately, choosing a paint color is more complex than simply selecting your favorite color. Lighting, finish, undertones, and architectural style are just some of the factors that can impact the look of paint.
Interior and exterior paint choices each have their own challenges and considerations. Follow our tips to help you choose interior and exterior paint colors for your house.
Choosing Paint Colors for Your Home’s Interior
You’ll spend a lot of time in your home, so you want to enjoy your color choices. Don’t know where to start? Think about the mood you want to invoke. Do you want a color that makes you feel cheery and bright, or do you want to create a calming effect?
Importantly, take your time. Don’t rush your paint selection.
Test Color in Different Lighting
Artificial and natural light can have a dramatic effect on color. Even the same color can look different from room to room. Before committing to a color, examine it at various sun exposures and throughout the day. Turn on artificial lights and test different light bulbs. It’s important to see how your paint color will look at any time.
Here is a quick breakdown on sun exposures and how it affects color:
- North-facing rooms: Light in these rooms tends to be cool and blue, so warm or bold colors are a good option.
- South-facing rooms: South-facing rooms get lots of natural light, and that lighting can change depending on the time of day. For south-facing rooms with a lot of windows, avoid bright or warm colors like oranges, and yellows.
- East-facing rooms: East-facing rooms get a lot of bright morning sunlight, and then that light becomes bluer throughout the day. Choose paint that works in the morning and evening, like a neutral or light color.
- West-facing rooms: Balance warm, yellow tones in west-facing rooms with cooler colors.
Complement Furniture and Decor
Many homeowners like to paint before they move in. If you haven’t decided on furniture and decor yet, you could limit your options if you paint first. Instead, choose fabrics, area rugs, and furniture first, and then find a paint color to match.
Also consider if you have any permanent fixtures that you won’t be changing, such as a fireplace or wood exposed beams. You’ll be happier with your decision if your paint color complements these room features.
Account for the Whole House
Interior paint choices shouldn’t be based on one room. Consider the flow of your entire house. Here are some tips:
- It is often best to stick with one color scheme for a home’s interior, especially if it’s open-concept.
- Look at adjacent rooms. If using different colors, make sure they complement each other.
- Create continuity with colors that are in the same temperature family (warm vs. cool).
How to Select Exterior Paint Colors
The exterior of your home is important for curb appeal, and it is likely the first thing people will notice. For this reason, choosing exterior paint colors can be an intimidating choice.
Remember that for exterior projects, you’ll need to choose your main color (field color), accent color, and trim color.
Don’t Forget About Stone, Brick and Other Home Exteriors
It is more than likely that you have parts of your house that will be left unpainted, such as brick, stone, or concrete. And don’t forget about your roof! All of these areas have their own colors and undertones. These are the areas of your home that are harder to change, so consider your color choice with this in mind.
To choose a complementary paint color, identify the undertones of these key areas. For example, your home’s concrete isn’t just gray. It might be green gray. Undertones add a warm or cool effect to the color. Paint undertones don’t need to match, but they should coordinate so your home’s exterior has a cohesive look.
Examine in the Sunlight
Natural lighting is also an important factor for your home’s exterior paint. Daylight will make your color appear cooler. This means you may actually want to choose a color that is a few shades warmer to achieve the look you want.
Evaluate different colors outside in sunlight and shadows. Paint will look different depending on the sun exposure.
Account for Climate and Weather
Weather can impact how quickly exterior paint wears. Repeated exposure to UV rays can cause paint to fade, which may be most visible on bright or dark colors. A professional can help ensure that you choose quality paint that resists fading and chipping.
In addition, the color of paint that you choose may impact the temperature on the inside of your home. Dark-colored exteriors absorb 70 to 90% of radiant energy from the sun. On the other hand, light-colored paint reflects the sun. If you live in an area that gets a lot of sunlight, consider a lighter color to keep the interior of your home comfortable.
Consider Architectural Style and Neighbourhood
Your home can be unique, but you don’t want it to clash with the rest of the neighbourhood. Your architectural style may serve as a guide. For instance, bold color choices may be suitable for a colonial revival home, but maybe not in a contemporary or modern home.
Choosing paint colors, especially for large projects, can be overwhelming. Hiring a professional who understands all of these factors can save you time and money in the long run.
King Painting specializes in large residential painting projects. Whether you need to update the exterior of your home or repaint your entire first and second floor, we are ready to help you select the right paint colors and materials for your project.
Our painting contractors are excited to work with you to create the home you’ve always dreamed of. Contact us for a free project estimate.