Tips for Selecting Exterior Paint Colors for Your Home

Given these current times, many homeowners wish to save money and update their homes independently. Exterior painting is one of the most significant exterior home projects, and in the end, it will significantly impact your curb appeal and overall home appearance.

You have most likely been searching and comparing all different home styles, exterior finishes, and landscaping ideas if you’re here. If learning how to choose exterior paint colors for your house is on your radar, you’ve come to the right place!

Let me help you learn how to choose exterior paint colors for your house using these ten easy steps. These steps show you how to fall in love with your home and offer a dreamy updated look! Perhaps you are looking to sell. This is a perfect list of how to pick great exterior paint colors to help get your house market-ready!


How To Choose Exterior Paint Colors For Your House

Recently, I just had to get out of the house during the pandemic. It was a challenging way of life. As a result, I’ve spent several hours going on long weekend drives with my family. These drives were my hope to help break up the weeks we were stuck at home.

Additionally, I noticed many different home styles during these times, and I paid close attention to exterior details, exterior paint colors, plants, and flower beds. This further stirred my thought process even more into thinking I, too, needed to paint the exterior of my home.

As a result, here’s my step-by-step guide on choosing exterior paint colors for your house. If you’d like recommendations for real paint color choices, below are some great articles to visit to see the paint color recommendation lists.

Try It Out First with a Paint Color Visualizer App

I am thankful many paint manufacturer companies have developed new visual paint color apps. Painting apps are wonderful; they allow me to easily plug in my exterior home photos to “try on” different exterior looks. In fact, without lifting more than a finger, I can try on house paint colors right from my fingertips! I usually download these apps using my smartphone or computer, and I’m ready to explore in a matter of minutes!

These helpful apps are like a personal color consultant here to help you learn what styles will look best. These visual paint apps make perfect guides to help decide how to choose exterior paint colors for your house by simply using overlays.

Color Wheel Basics

The color wheel is the holy grail of painting. Color wheels are great ways to learn how to choose exterior paint ideas for your house that blend with the surroundings. You’ll get the update you’ve never thought possible using the color family!

Will you need a warmer color? Cooler paint color combinations? Are you a fan of darker colors or maybe prefer a light color?

Look around your home to be inspired. As I did during my weekend drives, pay close attention to the natural surroundings. Trees, plants, flowers, landscape, and other surrounding colors will speak to you. Use the color wheel to learn which way will best fit your home.

Drive Around and Compare The Homes In Your Current Neighborhood

I’ve found through experience neighbors stay friendly if you help them feel like they are a part of the decision. Remember, even having a simple conversation about your plans will keep them happier than keeping it a surprise.

Neighbors may even surprise you and offer great advice on how to choose exterior paint colors for your house. This advice is extra handy if they’ve already been through the process. If you have an HOA, check to make sure you’re following the allowed exterior color guidelines.

Next, I suggest looking to your home for guidance. First, think closely about your home’s materials, such as the trim, accents, and landscape, and these characteristics will be significant deciding factors in choosing exterior paint colors for your house.

Are there any permanent colors you absolutely can’t change? Instead, try to use the color wheel and coordinate with your surroundings.

man with paintbrush painting wooden house exterior

Make An Inspiration Board of Your Favorite Exterior Home Colors, Trims, and Accents

One of my favorite ways to plan for home projects and interior/exterior decorating is by creating an inspiration board. An inspiration board is an excellent way to compile your patterns, exterior elements, paint samples, and landscape choices. Seeing them all grouped in one place will give you the inspiration you need. Similar to the visual color app, this is a way I can make sure everything coordinates and blends nicely.

Seeing all my ideas laid out ahead of time takes the stress from my final decisions. For example, suppose I lay color samples next to my home’s exterior materials? I’m still surprised how many colors will naturally jump out at me, maybe even a few lower on my favorites list.

Choose Exterior Color Samples

If you need further project color inspiration:

First, go visit your local painting store or home improvement store. Next, look in the paint color section, find the colors you’ve had in mind, grab samples, and bring them home. Lastly, tape them on your home exterior.

Samples are great ways to learn how to choose exterior paint colors for your house by simply using natural light. Never select your exterior paint colors on a whim; cross your fingers, and hope for the best.

It’s fun to be bold, but there’s a time and a place, and exterior paint is a permanent installment. Therefore, it’s best to choose classic color palette choices that match your neighborhood.

Don’t forget to also coordinate with your trim and home accents! Additionally, pay attention to the color of your roof shingles. Is your top color choice compatible with your exterior accents and roof color?

Don’t Depend Only on Trendy Color

Popular exterior color palettes come and go throughout the years; however, keep in mind exterior home painting is permanent. Dark colors cause your home to appear smaller, while choosing a lighter color will give grander illusions.

While I discuss how to choose exterior paint colors for your house, I can’t suggest neutral colors enough. You should choose a neutral color or at least white trim to give your home an overall balanced look. Blend with nature and your surroundings for the best results. For a pop of bright color, consider painting your front door a bolder shade for the perfect color scheme!

“Try On” Your Choices

Along with matching color samples to your exterior, I’ve found applying your actual paint color to a small area is essential. View the paint swatch for a couple of days; it’s eye-opening. I observe how the exterior house colors look against my home in the dawn, mid daylight, and dusk. Additionally, I choose one or two more complementary exterior paint color ideas to test out.

Never skip out on trying out your colors first. Trying exterior paint colors is a lot like trying on clothes, and most people prefer to try on formal clothing before making a final decision. The same plan should apply to learning how to choose exterior paint colors for your house using samples.

Lastly, It’s a big decision; never tread lightly. Never settle; test several colors until you’re 100% confident with your decision. The “buyer’s remorse” saying is accurate, and this is a large home improvement project.

Good Prep Work Is Just as Important

Above all else, always practice safety before you begin painting. Wear protective gear, such as goggles, gloves, protective clothing, and masks to keep you healthy during your home projects. I have a few great articles I’d also like to recommend. To learn more, check out “How To Prep a House For Exterior Painting” on our website.

Prep work is absolutely everything when it comes to long-lasting exterior paint results. Use your prep knowledge and perform skills such as sealing, sanding, and priming to prepare for paint. This way, you end up with a smooth and flawless finish! Come check out our article on DIY Painting Tips called “The Best Exterior Primer for Your Home.”

choosing colors in swatches

Do You Need Help Deciding on a Great Exterior Paint Color?

There’s a lot to consider when learning how to choose exterior paint colors for your house. Yes, the exterior color scheme and coordinating trim, siding colors, and the overall style. In addition to this article, I’ll always encourage you to do your research!

On DIY Painting Tips, there are more articles, such as favorite exterior paint color mentions for this year here and here. I invite you to use these paint lists or even find the perfect pop of color for your front door!

Realizing You Want to Hire A Professional Painter

There’s never any shame in deciding an exterior paint job is too large to do on your own. The best advice I can give as a professional painter is simply don’t wait until it’s too late.

Save yourself time and money, and look into all your options before starting. Making it halfway through your project, only to realize you need professional help, is more challenging than you think.

Choosing a professional painter can be overwhelming. If you live in the Minnesota area, I’d love to offer my assistance. My article about choosing and hiring an exterior painter could come in handy. It covers all the basics to guarantee you final results to be proud of!

Large Urban Home Minneapolis painting company mn

Wrapping Up How To Choose Exterior Paint Colors For Your House

As a homeowner, one of the largest decisions is learning how to choose exterior paint colors for your house and choosing the actual colors. There are many popular color recommendations, brands, and styles; it’s challenging to know where to begin.

Take a deep breath; you’ve got this! I hope this guide helped you more on your journey on how to choose exterior paint colors for your house. Now you’re one more step closer to choosing “the perfect color.”