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Choosing the Best Exterior Paint Colors for Your Home

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A painter applies white-colored external paint to a building

The right paint—and color—can not only protect the exterior of your home, but also express your personal style.

Mother Nature's punishing effects on a house invariably come to light as we emerge from winter and launch into warmer weather and longer days.

Exterior paints and stains are a home's best protection against the elements, and how long and how well an exterior paint or stain will do its job to protect a house depends on the quality and type of the paint or stain, the quality of the preparation, and the quality of the application.

Choosing the Best Exterior House Paint

Recent breakthroughs in paint technology have yielded a new generation of eco-friendly, low-VOC exterior paints and stains, such as Aura® Exterior Paint and Arborcoat® Waterborne Exterior Stain. This new breed of high-performance exterior coatings performs better than other paints and stains and withstands the test of time.

When selecting the best exterior house paint or stain for your home, keep in mind the following attributes:

  • Durability and overall performance
  • Resistance to mold and mildew
  • Resistance to ultraviolet radiation
  • Ease of application
  • Available in colors that resist fading
  • Environmentally friendly
Selecting Exterior Paint Colors

In addition to its protective value, a new coat of paint or stain can be aesthetically transforming–and choosing a paint color is always a challenge. Here are a few ideas to help make choosing the best exterior paint colors for your home simple:

  • The roof, driveway and chimney are existing elements that won't be painted but that should play a role in determining your color choices. For a façade that's partially stone, for example, using a similar color will add visual harmony. If the fixed colors are intense, like a terra-cotta tile roof, a neutral color will bring balance.
  • The landscaping is another important factor. Select colors that fit in with the surrounding palette. If you have brilliant-colored spring blooming trees or a sea of green foundation plantings, choose colors that will complement them.
  • Choose a color scheme that is compatible with the other houses in the neighborhood. You don't have to imitate the palette or application exactly, but can put your own individual spin on similar color combinations.
  • Regional influences also are bound to affect your choice as you account for the local terrain, seasons, interplay of natural lighting, even history and culture.
[Note: In the case of vinyl siding, the color is a key factor as well, since certain shades don’t perform well. Learn more about choosing exterior paint colors for vinyl siding.]

So take the plunge and beautify and protect your home for years to come.


Get started with our Color Gallery paint color visualization tool, which will help you select the best exterior stain and paint colors for your home.

Paint your home online and see how colors will look before making a purchase with our Personal Color Viewer virtual paint color visualization tool.

Learn how to paint the exterior of your home.

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