Picking paint colors is more complicated than you realize. There are 100s of whites to pick from, some warm and others cold. Each primary color has an equal number of choices. So how do you pick the best paint colors? Interior decorators offer a “color consultation” where they come to your home and provide you with recommendations on colors that will work well with the lighting and furniture in a room.
Interior decorators can recommend colors they've already seen, i.e. they know they work because they've been in one/more rooms with that paint color. They're also trained to understand how people react to different colors which is invaluable when preparing to place your home on the real estate market. Paint colors can make a marked difference in a buyers' first impression of your biggest investment.
…… by Jill Hoskings, Hosking Interiors
Think Like a Buyer
It's difficult to be objective about our own homes, but try to think like a buyer when deciding what color changes may be needed to freshen up your rooms. The last thing you want a buyer thinking as they tour your home is “I'll have to paint every room in this house – too much work!” You want the buyers' focus to be on the square footage, or the unique architecture your home has to offer, or how well maintained your interior appears to be, not on how much work it will be or how much it will cost to change something. Buyers love “fresh” and “new,” so give them what they want.
Keep It Neutral
To appeal to the greatest number of prospective buyers, select neutral colors that will complement your existing furnishings, rugs, and trim. What color will highlight the architectural features in the room? Is there a color that will make the room seem “larger” (remember, you're selling square footage, not the wall color)? Neutral does not necessarily mean white or beige, either. Muted shades of gray, brown and green should be considered as they might better coordinate with your existing furnishings and help to make a space feel more updated and modern.
To Faux or Not to Faux
Faux finishes and wallpaper are beautiful, but a matter of individual taste. Asking someone to like your paper pattern or faux finish is like asking someone to love your favorite outfit as much as you do. Treat yourself and experiment with these finishes at your new home.
The current market conditions require that sellers go above and beyond the old norm of preparing a home for sale. The most economical and high impact tool in your “staging” arsenal is paint (second only to de-cluttering your home!). Utilizing the correct color and application of paint to refresh and modernize your interior can make a difference in the buyer's overall perspective of your property.
So let me leave you with this thought…if you were selling your car, you would probably get it detailed (or detail it yourself) before letting a prospective buyer see it, right? Your house, a much greater investment than your car, commands the same attention to detail, and more.
Jill Hosking-Cartland is the owner and principal designer of Hosking Interiors in Windham, NH. She was a member of 4 Walls 1 Roof. Jill is a certified Interior Redesign and Real Estate Staging Specialist, working with home owners to prepare their home for sale. She also helps homeowners create the home of their dreams with spaces that reflect their personal wants and needs.