Selecting a color or colors for the exterior of your home might seem like a pretty straightforward, simple task. You just pick the colors you like, right? Well, there is a little more to it than that, especially if you want your home to make a statement while still seamlessly adding to the beauty and character of your neighborhood and surrounding landscape. To make this task easier, we at North Star Stone thought we would put together a mini guide to make the process simpler.
Do Some Research
Before you head down to the paint store, talk to a contractor or check in with your local exterior stone expert, do a little homework. By following a few steps first, the task of selecting colors for the exterior of your home can go a lot smoother. We recommend that you:
Consider your environment; is your home situated in an urban, suburban, or more forested area? This can guide your exterior color choices.
Head down to your local library or bookstore and take a look at some architectural books and magazines to see what the experts have done.
Drive through the neighborhood and see what those in your community have done with color to keep their homes looking fresh and renewed.
Check out some of the helpful decorating and home design software that is available on the market. This software allows you to play around with color first and see what your home will look like.
Consider your home’s design. Is it modern or historical? Being able to determine these qualities about your home will help you select a color palette from which to begin. Perhaps you want to maintain your homes classic look or switch it up and do something bolder?
Think Top to Bottom
Another good way to approach selecting colors for you home is to start with the roof and work your way down. Here is what we mean:
You should choose either a cool or a warm color when considering your roof. Warm colors include brown, orange and tan. Cool colors are greys, blacks, blues and so forth. If unsure about warm and cool colors, consult a color wheel. They can be found on the Internet, paint stores and places that specialize in home decorating and improvement. If you go with a warm roof, go with warm siding. If you go with a cool roof, go with cool siding. If your roof and siding or main body of the house do not coordinate, the appearance of your home will not appear balanced.
Siding can be the best vehicle in which to add new colors to your home. Fortunately, when it comes to selecting a siding there are many exterior options to pick from. These include, stucco, stone veneer, Hardie Board, wood, vinyl siding and aluminum siding, and of course stone veneer. Your siding will cover the largest surface area of your home. Make sure it does not clash with other homes in your neighborhood. Also, keep your particular landscaping in mind. You will want your color choices to work with shrubs, trees, rocks and other plants and elements in your yard or on your property. Classic colors, like those found in varying shades of white, are always a safe bet. Keep in mind that a lighter color house will appear larger and a darker color house will appear smaller and remember your siding should coordinate with your roof. A warm roof looks more cohesive with warm siding and a cool roof looks better with siding that utilizes a cool palette. Also when it comes to your exterior and picking your new colors, keep in mind parts of the home where the color will not be changing, like your foundation. It is generally a good idea to keep your siding the same color as your foundation or go darker.
Trim and Windows
Think of the trim and windows of your home as a team. They should work together! When considering a color you are going to want to go either two shades lighter or two shades darker than your siding. Or, if you want to take the guess work out of selecting a color you can always go with a crisp bright white, which would fall into the cool category or an off white, which would actually fall into the warmer color zone. Remember, you can’t really go wrong with white when it comes to picking a color. Just remember that if your trim and your windows are in extreme contrast to your siding your house might look artificial. One interesting thing to remember when it comes to a white window trim is that it will actually reflect the light from outside and bring that light into your home. There really is nothing not to like about white window trim.
Garage doors can take up a significant amount of surface area. If your garage is closer to the street you will want it to match the siding of your home. However, if it is set farther back you can select a color that contrasts, by a shade or two. Make sure to highlight details like window trim and decorative elements that may adorn your garage door.
Think of your front door as setting the tone for how you want to represent your home. Moreover, your front door inevitably is responsible for making a first impression. Feel free to give it some personality. Be creative with windows and window panels that may flank either side of your door. Don’t be afraid to be bold. Think back to homes you may have seen that had doors in an eye catching blue, dashing red or vivacious turquoise. Color can leave a lasting impression!
Railings and Porches
A good rule of thumb is to paint your railings and any porches or steps you may have the same color as your house’s trim. You can also choose to paint these elements the same color as your siding if it is a neutral color. Keep this in mind too if you choose to do stone steps as well.
Accessories include things like shutters, window boxes, mailboxes, and the hardware you use on your doors and windows. Coordinating colors that complement the trim are a good way to go.
Some Important Information Regarding Stone
Stone veneer is a beautiful and flexible option when considering a color change on the exterior of your home. One of the great benefits of stone is how flexible and creative you can be when selecting a color because you can choose to have your stone custom colored to your specifications. Keeping in mind the importance of pairing warm colors with warm colors and cool colors with cool colors will help make the color selection process more streamlined. However, if you have fallen in love with adding a distinctive grey stone to your home, consider adding a warm accent tone to the trim or even the door. By doing this you are offsetting grey’s potential for looking dismal in some instances. Also, it has been recommended that when your exterior is stone or brick you should pick at least two colors for your home’s exterior.
A Few Important Notes
Try to blend in with the neighborhood – You should still be able to do this while maintaining your home’s distinction and unique character.
Monochromatic colors work well if you are trying to blend in with a forested, natural environment.
Cream and taupe blend more naturally into an environment than a stark white.
Track how much light your home gets. Depending on the time of day and position of the sun in relation to your house, your home’s exterior may look slightly different. Keep this in mind when selecting new exterior colors.
Selecting new colors for the exterior of your house should be a fun opportunity to explore new options for your home. Fresh, new exterior colors can literally transform your home’s appearance and personality. With a new color palette you can create that look you have always wanted for your home but weren’t sure how to execute. Also, don’t forget the amazing variety of exterior options, like stone veneer, on which to carry out your color plans. Fortunately, there are experts ready to help you decide what will look best. If stone veneer is one of the ways you want to incorporate new color onto your home, check out northstarstone.biz and see why homeowners in Chicagoland suburbs like Libertyville, Arlington Heights, Long Grove and Mount Prospect have chosen stone as a way to liven up their home’s color. If you have questions, please visit our Exterior Stone FAQ page or contact us at [email protected] or call: 847-996-6850 for a free estimate on your new exterior stone.