Colour makes a first impression!
The right colours make your home warm, inviting and appealing to potential buyers. The wrong colours produce a “yuck factor” that can send people scurrying. Although everyone has their own personal taste, there are guidelines you should follow when it comes to home colour.
You can use colour to emphasize space and to subtly make a buyer feel at home. Avoid extremes at all costs: don’t be too boring and don’t be too brash. The trick is to find the right balance with universal appeal.
Your house needs to fit in well within the neighborhood. A buyer wants to feel welcome and accepted in a new environment and the last thing they want is for their house to stick out like a sore thumb.
Living in the only bright pink house on a street of beige houses does not make one feel accepted.
Also consider the general environment of the neighbourhood – is it very urban or forested? How well does the house blend in with the landscape?
The architectural style of the house also plays a part: Victorian and Cape Dutch houses usually have a white exterior, for example.
The roof colour is also very important: black and grey is usually the way to go but you can also use the right shade of red, tan or green if it complements the rest of the house and the environment.
Entrance Hall and Living Room
The key in this area is warmth and neutrality. Soft beiges, muted greys and creamy whites are inviting – avoid plain white which can be overpowering and too sterile for some buyers. There are a multitude of bright colours to choose from which are appealing without being harsh.
The kitchen is where people chop, cut, dice, fry, stir and pour food and drinks and as a result good lighting is very important. Bright colours help to reflect light within the kitchen. Warm yellows and hues of red, olive and white can complement the flavours and smells the kitchen produces.
Bedrooms are for sleep and relaxation. Do use colours that create a sense of calm such as neutral beiges, egg-shell whites and soft olives or creams.
Usually the smallest room in the house, the bathroom space can be opened up with the use of bright colour. Dark colours immediately make a bathroom feel cramped. Use warm, white colours that emphasise space.
Wallpaper has made a comeback and there are appealing modern designs available – but not everyone has the same taste. You may love the wallpaper in your passageway but it may completely put off a potential buyer. Remove any wallpaper in your home and repaint.
When a buyer looks up and sees scuff marks or water marks on the ceiling, it is an immediate turnoff. Paint all ceilings with a flat, white colour (remove light fittings temporarily when painting).
Flow of colour
Ensure there is a consistent and smooth flow of colour from room to room. Avoid a jarring patchwork effect – you don’t want a shock every time you move from one room to the next.
Use these simple colour principles to make your home as appealing as possible. You want to make it easy for buyers to imagine what it would be like to live in the home, with their furniture in the rooms and their pictures on the walls.
Your turn: share your thoughts
Do you have any tips to share about how to use colour to make your house more attractive to buyers? Seen any horrors when house hunting? Let us know in the comments below…