How to Choose the Best Colors for House Painting


Choosing the right colors for your home’s paint job is crucial for creating the desired ambiance and enhancing curb appeal. Whether repainting your exterior or updating your interior, selecting the perfect colors requires thoughtful consideration. In this guide, we’ll delve into the intricacies of color selection for house painting, covering everything from understanding color basics to practical tips for making the right choices.

Understanding Color Basics

Before diving into color selection, it’s essential to grasp the fundamentals of color theory. The color wheel serves as a helpful tool, showcasing primary colors (red, blue, yellow), secondary colors (orange, green, purple), and tertiary colors (mixtures of primary and secondary colors). Understanding warm and cool colors is also crucial; warm tones like red and yellow evoke energy and vibrancy, while cool tones like blue and green exude calmness and tranquility. Achieving color harmony involves combining colors that complement each other, whether through analogous schemes (colors adjacent to each other on the wheel) or complementary contrasts (colors opposite each other).

Assessing Your Home’s Architecture and Style

When assessing your home’s architecture and style for a painting project, it’s crucial to consider how the chosen colors complement its unique characteristics and overall aesthetic. Here are some key points to keep in mind:

  • Architectural Style: Take cues from your home’s architectural style, whether traditional, modern, colonial, or Victorian. Each style has characteristic features and color palettes that can guide your color selection process.
  • Existing Materials: Consider the materials used in your home’s construction, such as brick, stone, or siding. The color of these materials can influence your paint choices, as you’ll want to create a cohesive look that enhances rather than clashes with the existing elements.
  • Historical Considerations: Research the original color schemes or historical color palettes associated with the architectural period for historic homes or buildings. Paying homage to the home’s history can add authenticity and charm to the overall design.
  • Regional Influences: Consider regional architectural trends and influences. Homes in coastal regions may gravitate towards light, breezy colors, while those in mountainous areas might embrace earthy tones that blend with the natural landscape.
  • Personal Preferences: While staying true to the architectural style is essential, don’t forget to consider your personal preferences and lifestyle. Ultimately, your home should reflect your tastes and make you feel comfortable.

By carefully assessing your home’s architecture and style, you can choose paint colors that enhance its beauty and create a cohesive and harmonious look that you’ll love for years.

Considering the Surroundings

Your home’s surroundings should also influence your color decision. This includes the natural environment, neighboring houses, and any existing landscaping.

Natural Environment

Take cues from your home’s natural surroundings. If you live amidst lush greenery, consider earthy tones like soft greens and browns to blend with the landscape seamlessly. For homes nestled in coastal areas, sandy beiges, soft blues, and whites evoke a serene beachfront ambiance, echoing the colors of the nearby ocean and sky.


While you want your home to stand out, it’s essential to consider the overall aesthetic of your neighborhood. Observing the color schemes of neighboring houses can provide valuable insights into what works well in your community. Strive for a balance between individuality and cohesion, ensuring your home complements its surroundings without clashing with neighboring properties.


Your home’s exterior should complement its landscaping features, enhancing curb appeal. Coordinate your color palette with garden beds, pathways, and outdoor structures. For instance, if you have vibrant floral arrangements or lush green lawns, choose colors that highlight these features without overwhelming them. A well-coordinated color scheme between your house and landscaping creates a harmonious visual flow, inviting admiration from visitors and passersby.

Interior Color Considerations

Although this guide primarily addresses exterior paint choices, it’s essential to recognize the relationship between your home’s interior and exterior color schemes. A cohesive color theme spanning both realms fosters a sense of continuity and unity throughout your living space.

Consider the hues already present within your home when deliberating on exterior colors. If your interior palette leans towards warm, earthy tones, selecting an exterior color that complements these shades can seamlessly connect the interior and exterior environments. Conversely, if your interior design embraces cool, modern tones, opting for an exterior color palette that echoes this aesthetic can further enhance your home’s overall harmony and visual appeal.

Trends and Personal Preferences

While trends can inspire, choosing a color that you love and suits your style is essential. Trends come and go, but your home’s color should be something you’re happy with for years. 

Currently, some popular trends include:

  • Muted Earth Tones: Soft greens, browns, and beiges that provide a natural, understated look.
  • Bold Accents: Use a bold color for doors, shutters, or trim to create a striking contrast.
  • Dark and Moody: Deep shades like charcoal, navy, and black for a sophisticated, modern look.

While following trends is tempting, consider how they fit with your home’s architecture and your long-term satisfaction.

Testing and Sampling Colors

Before committing to a color, it’s crucial to test it. Paint swatches can look different in various lighting conditions and on different surfaces. Here’s how to effectively test colors:

  • Sample Pots: Purchase small sample pots of your top color choices. Paint large swatches on different sides of your house to see how they look in various lighting throughout the day.
  • Observe in Different Lights: Colors can appear different in sunlight, shade, and artificial light. Observe your samples at different times of the day to ensure you like how they look in all conditions.
  • Compare with Fixed Elements: Compare your samples against elements that won’t change, such as your roof, brickwork, or stone features. Ensure the colors complement these fixed aspects.
  • Consider Texture and Finish: The texture and finish of your paint (e.g., matte, satin, gloss) can affect the color’s appearance. A gloss finish can make colors appear more vibrant, while a matte finish can soften them.

Practical Tips for Color Selection

Selecting the perfect paint color involves more than just choosing the right hue. Here are some practical tips to guide you:

  1. Use a Color Scheme: Choose a primary color for the main surfaces, a secondary color for trim and accents, and a third color for doors and shutters. This creates a balanced and cohesive look.
  2. Start with a Color You Love: If you’re unsure where to begin, start with a color you love. Use this as a base and build a complementary scheme around it.
  3. Consider the Undertones: Colors have undertones that can affect their appearance. For example, whites can have blue, yellow, or pink undertones. Be mindful of these when making your selection.
  4. Don’t Forget the Roof: The color of your roof can significantly impact your choice. Ensure your paint colors complement the roof material and color.
  5. Think Long-Term: Choose colors that will remain appealing over time. Neutral and classic shades tend to have more longevity than trendy, bold colors.
  6. Get Professional Help: If you still need to decide, consider hiring a color consultant. Professionals can provide expert advice tailored to your specific home and preferences.

Choosing the best colors for house painting involves a thoughtful process considering various factors, from architectural style to personal preferences. By understanding color basics, assessing your home’s surroundings, and testing different shades, you can make informed decisions that enhance your home’s aesthetic appeal. Additionally, consulting with professional house painters can provide valuable insights and expertise to help you achieve the perfect look for your space.

Remember to balance trends with timeless choices and seek professional advice when needed. With careful consideration, you can achieve stunning results that transform your house into a welcoming sanctuary. Ready to transform your home with a fresh coat of paint? Dreamcoat Lansing Painters offers expert house painting services along with our exterior painting expertise. 

Contact us today to schedule a consultation! With our commitment to quality and competitive pricing, you can trust us to bring your vision to life. Let’s turn your dream exterior into reality.

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