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Jeruba's avatar

How did you choose the exterior colors of your house?

Asked by Jeruba (41921 points ) September 26th, 2012

Just curious—I don’t need advice.

If you’ve had your house painted, did you choose the color or colors
•  just by absolute color preference (you love blue, so you painted your house blue)?
•  to fit in with the neighbors?
•  from a restricted palette—not really a choice?
•  out of habit?
•  because they’re the colors you grew up with?
•  to blend into the landscape?
•  to be different?
•  to make a statement?
•  other?

Please don’t feel that you must answer if the question doesn’t apply to you; for example, if you live in an apartment, or your house is made of brick, there’s no need to respond. It’s a color-choice survey, not a housing survey.

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10 Answers

JLeslie's avatar

I have had some color choice a few times.

One time I had to choose brick color, doors and shutters, and siding. I really like brown brick, but almost the entire neighborhood was some shade of red so I went reddish. I also picked a fairly neutral siding color, and black for front door and shutterm which was what most people chose. It was a developement where the houses where fairly close together, and sticking out like a sore thumb would have been ill advised for resale I think.

Another time we chose from a selection of colors approved for the neighborhood. I wanted a brownish color, seems to be my theme, but my husband wanted the orangish one. It was Florida, what can I say? So, we lived in an orange house. It didn’t stick out though. The neighborhood controlled how often a color could repeat, etc.

I recently repainted my house. I stuck with the colors it had originally been painted, even though I wanted to slightly change the greyish trim to more brown. I actually live in a brown house now, the brick is slurried brown and the trim is a very dark grey, with just a hint of brown in it, but mostly grey. The bits of siding are a cream, just short of yellow color, and also a mustard color. I live in the woods, and the dark grey on the trim blends with the trees when they turn grey for the winter. I did darken up the shutters and door to a very deep dark walnut brown. I love it! I like when wood looks rich and dark and like furniture in my mind. Before those things were more of a midbrown with a hint of orange.

I guess basically I am for blending in. Whether it be with the neighborhood, or with the scenery. It really depends on the specific neighborhood which way I go.

If it is typical to have colorful houses, I would probably go very colorful. If it is typical to be muted and blend in with the landscape I would do that.

I never really look to be different when it comes to house color, it has more to do with what I personally like and feel is smart as an investment. A very colorful house that is atypical for the area can give off the impression of lower class or minority. I know that is awful, but it is true. It really depends on the area of course, what is normal, and what stereotypes are out there.

picante's avatar

My husband and I built a custom home a few years ago that I would generally describe as Tuscan. Some builders in these parts love the phrase “Texas Tuscan,” but there’s nothing particularly Texan about this home, so I’m sticking with Tuscan.

The first selection in planning the exterior was the stone. We spent quite some time on that part, as we wanted the stone to play well with the architecture and the general environment. We next chose roofing tiles that were agreeable with the stone and lent some definition to a complex roofline.

With those colors forming our palette, it was relatively easy to find a great color that tied everything together. We spent much more time on the painting technique than the actual color, as I was hoping for that “old world” mottled technique (think Tuscan villa). But we could never quite get there, and we wound up painting the stucco a deep taupe and the fascia boards a lighter shade of the same color.

Coloma's avatar

My house was painted 2 years ago and I choose a really nice, subtle, sort of silvery, oakie, green. I have white trim and a natural cedar deck with the same house color on the platform. It blends with the local flora and I like that.

wundayatta's avatar

We live in a historic house with a historic palette, but our house was not currently wearing those colors. The colors were based on colors that matched the colors in the bricks. We have yellow bricks with a pick tinted mortar.

Then, there were colors I like. Green is my favorite color, and in the end, we got a dark shade of green to match the yellow that matched the brick, with a bit of maroon highlight. Our neighbor chose the same colors, which is important, since we share a wall and a porch.

Every house and every situation is different and has its own set of factors that help the people choose. Every owner has their own philosophy about color choosing, even if it is no philosophy at all. I think that when people go with more historical colors, it probably adds value to the neighborhood. When people think they are in the Caribbean but they are really in South Philly, that’s not good, and hurts the entire neighborhood. But unless you property has a covenant governing it, you’re free to make enemies with your neighbors if you really want to.

rojo's avatar

The brick was white which I chose because I was too cheap to use actual limestone. The trim is a two tone green because that is what my wife and I liked. In retrospect, after repainting way earlier than I thought I should have and THEN talking to a painter, I might not have chosen the darker green because it tends to fade or chalk more and faster than most of your other colors (other than dark blue I am told).

Linda_Owl's avatar

My first home was a frame house (built of wood, not brick). My husband & I painted it for the down payment. We painted it white & where the roof came to a point in the front of the house, I chose to paint alternating stripes of bright yellow. We also had a wooden screen door & the lower portion of the screen door had slanted louvers & I painted them in an alternating stripes of bright yellow & white. I like yellow.

woodcutter's avatar

Because of a quantity of colors left over from jobs I contracted the paint work, they were the ones I went with.

Looks fine.

YARNLADY's avatar

My house is a typical California Spanish replica, so I chose the standard adobe/brown beams colors with Tile roof colored roofing.

rooeytoo's avatar

I like natural colors and materials that blend in with the landscape and don’t scream out “MONUMENT TO ME!.” So beiges, grays, occasionally a green. I really am a camouflage person.

woodcutter's avatar

You’re supposed to have it bright white so a laser guided bomb could find it better.

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