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how to select the best exterior paint for your home

A yellow and dark blue house facade/Photography: Alex Padurariu/Read these tips before picking up the paintbrush.

Do you know how to choose exterior paint colors? Before embarking on your next outdoor paint project, take a few tips from "This Old House" paint consultant Bonnie Krims

Is there a difference between indoor and outdoor paint selection?

Bonnie gives a resounding yes. "Selecting colors for interiors requires considering the function, size, and style of the room, the light conditions, the furnishings and accessories and the colors in adjoining rooms and hallways," she explains.

Exterior of a large home with grassy lawn/Photography: Emily Minton Redfield/This Colorado home's stone exterior was updated with design team Marc-Michaels Interior Design painting the stucco Sherwin-Williams’ Shoji White and the trim with Sherwin-Williams’ Sealskin.

favorite exterior colors

But for exterior paints, there are different considerations. Take a look around your neighborhood, for starters: "Exterior paint colors should work with the style of the building, the location and the neighboring homes, the landscape, and the fixed features, such as stonework, brick, and stucco," explains Bonnie.

The sampling process may look different, too, depending on the size of your house. "Paint color 'grows' on an area as large as a house," she says. "The house body color must be tested in large samples at least 4' x 4’. Once a color is decided upon, if possible, test it directly on the house beside the trim color, the door color, etcetera. This allows you to see the house color in context." 

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