Outward Appearances are Important

by Joan E. Diamond 08/11/2019

If you live in an older home that needs a face-lift, you might be tempted just to paint it white or one of the many neutral colors you see around you. But sometimes neutrals just fade into the background. So, if you want your home to stand out, consider being bold and expressive with your exterior.

As you drive through older neighborhoods, make a note of the colors you love and the combinations that stand out to you. Depending on the exterior materials—stucco, brick, block, rock, vinyl, wood siding, shakes, etc. - and the architectural details you want to highlight, you can locate samples that “speak to you” and express your home’s personality.

Beware the covenants

If you live in an association operated development, check your covenants before hiring that paint crew. Some associations require submission of color choices and alternatives to an architectural or aesthetic committee for approval. Others have pre-selected color schemes from which to choose. In those cases, your options are more limited than if you can freely decide for yourself. So, select a combination that differs from your nearest neighbors and from other houses with your same facade. Opt for colorful shutters and doors instead to give your home some extra visibility.

Be brave, not obnoxious

On the other hand, if you have available any choice in the world, choose combinations that reflect the region, enhance the neighborhood, and reveal your home’s unique features. In many cases, subtlety adds more value to your home than a glaring hue. But if you’re showcasing a Mid-Century or ultra-modern home, go ahead and shout it out!

If you’re not sure what works for you, take a trip to your local specialty paint store. There, an in-house designer can show you combinations of color and materials, finishes and sheen. You’ll learn what colors can fade in bright sunshine or dull with the weather, and which paints will hold up to your local environmental conditions.

Also, take note of the preparation required to give your new exterior a long, full life. You may need to clean and power wash brick, repair cracked or broken stucco, and scrape peeling paint from wood siding and window trim.

While fiber-cement-based siding often accepts paint, vinyl likely does not, or it only accepts specific paint applications with an adhesive primer and quality, acrylic paint. Do not attempt to paint vinyl siding yourself without practicing the techniques on a hidden area first. If your home has vinyl siding, you may want to change the siding to change the color instead. Check the pricing both ways to see which is more economical for your home.

If you’re painting your home to sell it, get the opinion of your real estate professional for colors that attract buyers in your area.

About the Author
Author

Joan E. Diamond

BUYING A HOME ON HILTON HEAD ISLAND? START HERE Welcome to my website. I am Joan E. Diamond, a Hilton Head Island Real Estate Professional, who has been selling condos and luxury homes on Hilton Head Island since 2010. In 1973 we came to Hilton Head as resort guests and were touched by its beautiful beaches, live oaks, bike trails, tennis and golf facilities, and the friendly family charm of the Low Country. We returned every year until 2006 when we made Sea Pines on Hilton Head our permanent residence. We have watched the island grow and know it well.

I became a realtor on Hilton Head because I love the island and its lifestyle and enjoy showing people this wonderful place to live. I can advise you on restaurants, schools, boat rentals, and places to play golf and tennis. And when you are ready, I will show you condos, and homes in a wide variety of prices. So you, too, can call this island home. 

In 2018 I was certified as a Luxury Home Marketing Specialist and awarded Million Dollar Guild recognition based on outstanding performance in our Hilton Head market.