3 Common Color Mistakes Homeowners Make Choosing Paint Colors (And How To Avoid Them)

Choosing a color palette that will add beauty and value to your home’s exterior requires that you consider a number of factors about your house’s current condition. While there are many, many factors that go into choosing exterior paint colors, here are a few that often get overlooked.

We’ve provided some details about each of these common mistakes so that you can understand them and avoid joining the fallen ranks.

How To Pick Exterior Paint Colors For Your House

Plan Around Fixed Factors Like Driveways, Roof Shingles and Stonework…

When choosing a color palette, homeowners often get excited about the “color” part. As a result they forget about the greater color palette that is their entire home’s exterior. In other words, they forget to consider the color of exterior elements like their driveway, their roof shingles, their stonework and even their larger surrounding (think neighbors).

It’s vital that you consider the colors of these fixed factors–otherwise, you will end up with an exterior color that displays an uncomfortable contrast and doesn’t play nicely with your property as a whole.

Don’t Rely on Paint Chips

Another common mistake among homeowners is to simply get “paint happy.” With a lot of energy and the time to do it, homeowners will go out, quickly choose their colors and paint, and immediately begin to coat their house…only to find that the color they chose looks different on their house than in the store.

To avoid this mistake, buy 1 can of paint you like and then apply some to a small portion of your exterior. Then, leave it for a couple of days, observing how it looks in the sunshine, in the shade, and in the rain. If you like it, then go ahead and freshen up your outside! If you don’t like it, well then you just saved some serious time and money.

Account for Home’s Architectural Style and Era

This one is fairly obvious but easy to overlook. Every house has a style associated with it and an era in which it was built. Take that into consideration as you explore colors for house. Choosing a bright orange for a Victorian-era house can, for example, produce a serious eye-sore.

This isn’t something, however, that you have to stress for hours over. The point is to choose colors that feel appropriate to age and style of your home. If you need help confirming your color choices, look for similar style / color combinations on Google Images. If you need additional help, talk to a painting professional.

How To Pick Exterior Paint Colors For Your House

Consider the 3 Main Parts of an Exterior Paint Color Scheme:

In order to create a beautiful color palette for your home’s exterior, you need to make sure that you identify a color for each of these 3 main exterior elements. You also want to make sure that the color you choose for each specific element blends or contrasts well with the colors of the other two elements.

Field Color

Field color refers to the dominating color of your exterior color palette. This color will be the one that is, essentially, the color you choose for you siding and, thus, your whole exterior. If you are looking for a little inspiration in choosing this color, take a look at this helpful article.

Obviously, it’s important to make sure you choose this color wisely, considering the factors mentioned in the previous section (as well as many others).

Accent Color

Accent colors will go on the larger elements of your exterior that aren’t siding. Accent colors will be applied, for example, to things like doors, shutters, and smaller areas of your house. Accent colors allow you to add that bold, contrasting pop to your color scheme. A bright red door or shutters can add that extra bit of “umph” that you need to make your house stand out.

Trim Color

While trim will make up the smallest portions of your home’s exterior, it is very important to make sure that your trim color contrasts nicely with your field color. This will make your trim “pop” off the house (or, in certain cases, make your field color stand out).

White trim, for example, is often a great choice when coupled with a darker field color. And if you prefer bright, white houses, then a darker trim can help define the borders and edges of your home.

Use A Color Palette Tool

The internet is filled with great resources to help make choosing a color scheme faster and easier. Start by performing searches online for colors that interest you and see how those colors look on homes similar to yours.

Once you’ve performed some initial research and gained a clearer understanding of what you want, try creating some color palettes online. You can use some of these tools to help get you started:

These are some of the best online color tools in the painting industry and will help you get a serious head start on your project.

*If you know of any other great tools to create color palettes, drop them in the comments below!*

Just Get Started!

One of the hardest parts about exterior house painting is simply starting the process. It is a big decision and it is also a lasting decision. However, it isn’t the biggest decision of your life. Start. Have fun with it. Get your creative juices flowing and start creating a fresh, new look for your home today!

Call Kopeck Painting for a free quote on your project!

Thinking of painting your home this summer? Already have? Drop your questions or success stories in the comments below — we want to hear what you’ve been doing!