Choosing an exterior color for your home comes down to taste, style, and preference.
Many homeowners prefer to choose their favorite color – within reason. You don’t see many houses that are hot pink, but they do exist.
But what are classic colors for smaller houses?
When Painting Your Small Home a Certain Color, Consider This:
Lighter, neutral, and earthy tones are the best color for a smaller home. Brighter colors like off-white, light yellow, or grey are perfect for making your house look bigger than it is. Light blue and cream colors give small homes a cottage or beach look.
What Are the Most Used Colors for Smaller Houses?
The most used colors for small homes are more likely going to be bright and light.
Here is a list of the most-used colors in a smaller home exterior:
- Light Yellow
- Sage or Hazel Green
- Light Blue
- Barn Red
There are also popular tiny homes and small home exteriors that use real wood with black trim or real stone to give it that small, cottage, Hobbit-home vibe.
If you like it to feel more farmhouse-looking, you might paint it white with red trim.
Either way, most exteriors are light, neutral, and earthy-looking.
How Do I Pick Exterior House Colors?
Picking an exterior house color comes down to your style and taste!
If you love beach or cottage style tiny houses, you might want light blue or off-white to give it that summer vibe. Ranch styles are more yellow and cream.
If you like something a little darker, you would go with a darker blue, an earthy green, or even a barn red.
Or, if you are feeling adventurous and fun, you might choose a bright, light yellow or light sage green!
Either way, choosing a color is more about happy you will be when you come home to it every day and less about marketability.
Although, if you are planning to sell that house again in the future, try not to paint it bright pink.
What Exterior Colors make a Small House Look Bigger?
Brighter colors make a house look bigger and more inviting.
A lighter color, such as off-white, cream, or light blue or green, will make your house seem less compressed and more open and airy.
If you painted a small house a deep, dark blue, it would feel tighter, smaller, and more cramped.
Furthermore, interior paint jobs should be bright and sunny. It is proven that darker paint jobs inside can make homeowners feel more sad, angry, or confined.
If you’re not sure about this, consider looking at two small houses side-by-side: a deep blue and the other a bright cream or off-white.
Even a light grey is better for making your small house seem so much bigger!
How Many Colors Should a House Exterior Have?
A house exterior should not have more than three colors.
This would include the color of the walls, the shutters (if you have any) and trim, and finally the front door.
Many homeowners love to have neutral homes with light-colored shutters and trim but with a bright, statement-making front door. Sometimes they will go as far as four colors, but that is usually two different shades of the same color in the trim or walls.
For example, your house could have white walls with grey trim or shutters, and a big red door.
Or your house could have light blue walls, dark blue shutters, and a bright white door.
Whatever you decide, try not to go over three exterior colors for your house, and make sure they match!
Exterior Color Combination Ideas for Small Houses:
On the road trips home to see my family, I always pass by this light purple house with black shutters and a bright, neon green door.
It is the oddest-looking home and has been there for about three years now. I assume it either can’t sell, or it makes the owners very happy.
However, I wouldn’t recommend it for your own home.
If you are looking for good color combinations for your small home, consider these:
- Off-white walls, light grey trim/shutters, red door.
- Light blue walls, dark blue trim/shutters, white door.
- Light green walls, cream, and dark green trim/shutters, brown door.
- Light yellow walls, cream, and white trim/shutters, blue door.
These are only four of the many, many combinations out there that can make your house into a home.
Consider looking online at small house exteriors and get some ideas for yourself!
How Does the Choice of Color Affect a House?
The choice of color can really affect how the house is perceived.
Like we mentioned before, the color of your house can make it look bigger or smaller, open and airy or cramped and confined. It can also make it feel “warmer” or “cooler.”
In the same vein as that neon-green door and purple house that I pass on road trips, people in your neighborhood will remember your house specifically if you give it a bright and crazy color scheme.
Or you can blend into the crowd with a basic, neutral tone.
While you don’t have to take any of this into account when choosing a color palette (after all, this is your house, do what you like with it), some homeowners want to feng-shui their home to match their style and tastes.
So, if you like basic white colonials, light blue beach houses, or bright yellow farmhouses, that’s entirely up to you.
Should Exterior Colors be Lighter or Darker?
Exterior colors are better when they are lighter – if it is painted.
If you have a home made of natural stone and wood, a darker trim looks great!
However, if you have painted wood or siding, consider going with a lighter, more earthy, and neutral tone. This is a great choice that will make your house look fresh and new, with bright, happy colors that light up your yard and street.
Once the exterior is painted lighter, you can add darker or more earthy trim colors to it, such as dark greens, blues, or even browns and reds.
If you painted it a dark color, that’s also fine, but you will have a home that is more imposing and may look smaller or more cramped because of it.
However, there are some dark colors, such as blue and barn red, that work well with smaller homes and make them seem warmer.
Most of all, choose the color that you like best! You are, after all, the person who will be living there.
Why not enjoy it?
What Color Houses Sell Best?
Houses with versatile colors or ones that aren’t too bold and garish are your best bet when selling your home.
If you have ever seen houses that were painted purple or bright green, perhaps even pink, then you might have assumed that those are too hard to sell.
Not without a fresh coat of paint, that is.
Some of the more marketable colors are:
- Wheat (Cream Color)
- Grey (& Other Shades of Grey)
- Blue (Light & Dark)
These are the classic colors that most houses are painted to keep them marketable.
Creams, greys, blues, and off-whites are great because you can pair trim colors with them, such as blue shutters or a big red door.
If you had a very bright or primary-colored exterior paint job on your house, it might be a lot harder to sell.
If, however, you like bright colors, consider these colors instead:
- Yellow (Sunny or Light Yellow)
- Green (Light or Sage Green)
- Red (Barn or Deep Red)
Primary colors are way too bold and often will make your house stand out too much. Neutral, earthy tones are much easier to sell because they go with everything.
Neutral tones are easy on the eyes and don’t attract a lot of attention, and they are pleasing to look at, too.
Should the Outside Colors Match the Inside of the House?
The outside of your house is simply to make a statement to everyone passing by.
It can be neutral and plain or eye-catching and bright, but your inside doesn’t have to match.
Instead, many homeowners will do one of two things:
- Choose an overall theme both inside and out (cottage, ranch, modern, colonial, etc.).
- Have an outside that doesn’t match the inside at all.
There is no “should.” Your house is your own!
Enjoy it, and make it look however you want, you’re the one who has to live there.
However, if you are in the market for selling your house, you might want to rethink having a bold inside, especially if your outside is painted a plain, off-white colonial style.
If your inside has hot pink walls and leopard print furniture, then you might need to redecorate before the realtors come knocking.
12 Exterior Paint Colors to Help Sell Your House
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The Best Colors to Use in Small Homes