First impressions are everything when you’re preparing to sell your home, especially if you’re trying to appeal to a broad range of buyers. While addressing the outdated orange living room walls and chipped exterior paint are essential steps to set the stage, a home’s color palette can impact a buyer’s perspective of a house. But with a wide array of colors to choose from, picking the best paint colors for selling your home can seem like an overwhelming task.
So, which are the best colors to sell your home? We asked experts from Bridgeport, CT, all the way to San Francisco, CA, for their best advice when it comes to picking the best paint colors for selling a house. Here’s what they had to say.
The best exterior paint colors for selling a home tend to be classic and neutral, yet bold
Attractive curb appeal is key, so your exterior paint color should make a great first impression on potential homebuyers. While the best paint colors for selling a house tend to be neutrals, you can still make bold statements or add pops of color in subtle ways to enhance your home’s overall appearance.
The ‘greige’ family is one of the best exterior paint colors because it has the perfect balance of warm and cool tones. “One of our personal favorites is Kelly Moore’s ‘KM4907 Gallery Gray.’ If you’re looking for a bold accent color for shutters or a front door, ‘KM4911 Desert Shadow’ is a great go-to. For a pop of color, a low saturation green, such as ‘KM5747 Sugar Pine,’ has been very popular. Green is representative of nature, which is something we could all use,” shares Lindsay, Co-Founder, ATX Painting Company based in Austin, TX.
Try Tricorn Black for contrast. “This popular exterior paint color from Sherwin-Williams is often used on front doors or shutters, but also looks great on exterior trim. It’s a darker shade that can act as a modern trim accent that contrasts well against a lighter-toned siding color,” notes Andre Kazimierski, Co-Owner of 3rd Gen Painting and Remodeling based in Madison, WI.
Opt for Chelsea Gray for timeless color. Carr Lanphier, COO of Improovy Painters in Chicago, IL states, “This timeless gray exterior paint color is a top choice for homes with cedar shingle siding or craftsman exteriors. It’s a deeper gray with warm undertones that make white exterior trim really pop. We appreciate its versatility, as it works on both historic homes and more contemporary exteriors.”
When you are choosing exterior colors, always keep your roof in mind. “One of the biggest mistakes I see are roofs that don’t work with the house color – it’s like getting dressed and making sure your top matches your pants,” says Jennifer Smith of Color Smith,Smith based in Albuquerque, NM. “If your roof is a considerably darker color than the color of your house, make sure to use a darker color somewhere else for balance. Color has weight, so you don’t want it to feel top-heavy.
Choose colors that fit your home’s style. “You should take your home’s style into consideration when picking the best paint colors for selling a house. Is your home mid-century modern? Create a statement with Benjamin Moore Antiqued Aqua. Traditional Ranch Style? Benjamin Moore Revere Pewter is calming and welcoming. Colonial? Paint your home Benjamin Moore White Dove, but add a pop of unexpected color using Benjamin Moore Yellow Hibiscus or Azores. Let the exterior of your home create a statement,” suggests Leslie Price of Price Style + Design in Lafayette, CA.
When selling your home, opt for timeless colors in the kitchen
The kitchen is the heart of the home and is arguably the most important room for many potential homebuyers. With that in mind, it’s essential to create a kitchen that catches a buyer’s eye. Updating the paint in your kitchen can make a big impact without requiring an entire kitchen remodel.
Keep it neutral with Behr’s Irish Cream, Benjamin Moore’s Grape Ice, or Sherwin-Williams Obi Lilac. EmeraldPro Painting shares, “When it comes to kitchen color selection, bold and dramatic colors are the theme of modern society. And having spent the last year indoors, many are seeking to energize their surroundings in new ways. However, home sellers should choose paint in neutral tones. Bold and dramatic paint colors often require a neutral primer before a surface can be repainted into whatever color the new homeowner wants. To the prospective buyer, that means time and money added to an already large purchase. But that doesn’t mean you should just paint your house with primer and call it good. Instead, give your kitchen a new look with a solid color such as Behr’s neutral Irish Cream, the faint violet of Benjamin Moore’s Grape Ice, or the tinted gray of Sherwin-Williams Obi Lilac. These are colors anyone can appreciate and are easily covered by the next person to make your old house their new home.”
Use a combination of earthy and bold colors in the kitchen with a multicolor palette. “Organic and blush shades of rose have risen to the top,” notes Jessica Wrubel of Hague Partners in Scottsdale, AZ. “For a wall color or upper cabinet color with seedy glass inserts, try Benjamin Moore Pale Cherry Blossom 2101-60. A softer alternative to black is Railings No. 31 by Farrow and Ball. It’s definitely more blue than black but elusive in certain lights, perfect for a bold statement island with a lighter contrast countertop. It can even be used as a wall color with a white baseboard to add contrast.”
Embrace the two-toned cabinet trend with Sherwin-Williams Sea Spray and White. “Two-tone kitchen cabinets are becoming popular,” remarks Emerald Professional Painters of Toronto, ON. “Homeowners are moving towards a white or neutral hue throughout the wall cabinets, while adding a splash of color throughout the base cabinets and island. Sea Spray by Sherwin-Williams is a popular color option with a perfect mix of green and gray undertones, setting the stage for unique kitchen and surrounding area decor options to provide a designer home feel and transformation.”
Incorporate blue hues for a subtle pop of color. “Gray is a neutral color that has been taking center stage for a while now; however, as brighter colors are being used more in the kitchen, there’s one color that accents gray perfectly, and that’s blue. Either a light or dark shade of blue is a perfect color for a kitchen because of how invigorating it can be. When using blue, it’s important to use hints of white, gray, or a neutral color to keep it from being too intense and overwhelming the whole room,” notes LIME Painting.
Neutral paint colors are best throughout the rest of your home
When it comes to the rest of your home, it’s typically best to stick to a neutral color palette. It’s easier for homebuyers to imagine themselves getting ready in the primary bathroom or decorating the spare room as a nursery if it’s left to their imagination. However, you can still incorporate color and achieve an eye-catching interior with decor.
You can never go wrong with whites, creams, and greige. Tara Nelson Designs and Open House Staging of Seattle, WA says, “Top of my list when preparing a home for the market is painting – we like to call it “money in a can.” Always choose a neutral palette to help buyers feel connected to your home. We’re all looking for a clean and soothing space to live in, and paint is the backdrop. My go-to colors are white, cream, and greige (gray+beige). Depending on your home, one of these options will be perfect. We aren’t out of the woods yet on gray; we’re just moving toward warmer grays. So take a look at Benjamin Moore Revere Pewter if cream or white isn’t quite right for you. Otherwise, Benjamin Moore Simply White and Sherwin Williams Snowbound are always winners.”
Keep it light and neutral when selecting the best paint color for selling a home. “Buyers have their own ideas for accent walls and color changes. Instead of taking chances on a color palette that might put them off, use a consistent light color to help showcase the space with a clean blank canvas that’s ready to be decorated to someone else’s taste,” notes WILLCO based in Portland, OR.
Neutral paint colors create a clean, cohesive look. “We recommend Sherwin-Williams Agreeable Gray with white trim. This shade helps make a small room feel larger, and it creates an overall open feeling throughout the home,” notes ProPainting & Remodeling of Alpharetta, GA.
Attract buyers by adding some warmth to your home. Paint Power of New York City, NY says, “When you spend time at home, you need to give life to it to make it yours. The best way to achieve this is to add a little warmth to your spaces. We found that Sherwin Williams Drift of Mist can make your home look warm without feeling boring, and it goes with pretty much everything you want to put in your place.”