Let’s talk paint colors! When we went to sell our first house, we knew that the entire interior needed a fresh coat of paint on ALL the walls. It would need to appeal to the buying market in this area and it would need to show well in pictures. Let’s face it, we all know that we live in a digital world….if it doesn’t look good on our phones then there is not a chance that you would go see it in person. That applies to houses and to people 🙂
For this giant job we hired Carlos, our favorite painter who did our two-story living room to do this house for us too. He is also the one that did our trim in our bedroom. When we hire him to do these jobs, we buy the paint and supplies and he does the work. Since we were hiring out the labor, we wanted to make sure that we got the best bang for our buck when it came to the final return….we wanted paint colors that not only looked good and gave the appearance of a clean and well maintained home but that would motivate the buyers to make an offer.
Apparently Zillow did a study on room colors and prices that homes sold for and I basically followed that advice. In the analysis results, it said that homes that had particular colors in particular spaces sold for more than other colors. You can read the full article here. The rooms and colors were listed in this post but I will give you bullet points here…..
- KITCHENS – soft gray blue
- BEDROOMS – cadet blue or cerulean
- BATHROOMS – light blue or periwinkle
- LIVING ROOM – light beige, light taupe, oatmeal
- DINING ROOM – slate blue, pale gray blue
I noticed a trend….light colors and most of them lived in the blue, gray or beige family. That makes sense because according to wikipedia, those colors are mood influencing and often the psychology behind a color changes the way you perceive things. Blue is supposed to make you feel relaxed and is associated with high quality. Both things that you want someone to sense in a house you want to sell. So I decided to stick to buying three colors of paint for our entire house…a beige, a blue and a gray.
Since I didn’t really know the exact hues I wanted to pick, I decided to reference Benjamin Moore’s most popular neutrals for the beige and gray. That helped tremendously and I landed on Edgecomb Gray for the beige and then Gray Owl for the true gray. I then did a quick search on Pinterest for popular blues….saw this pin….and decided that Silver Gray would hit the description of “light”, “soft” and “slate”….so that filled my final spot.
So the rooms all got a makeover. We didn’t know exactly how far the paint would go but we knew that we wanted certain paint in certain areas. The dining room needed to be blue so that was an easy first one….
Then came the living room and den which was best in beige. Since these two rooms are open to one another, we wanted to do them in two different colors – gray and beige. After a quick test on the walls, the living room got gray and the den got beige.
The other deciding factor was that the kitchen was open to the den. The gray next to the stained cabinets made them look even more orange but the beige toned down the underlying hue. (it should be noted that the pictures I am using are the listing pictures so they look even more aggressively orange here but are actually not that crazy).
Time for another easy one – bathrooms. These according to Zillow should be light blue. We quickly noted that the master bathroom would be a great one to make over in Silver Gray…
The first floor bathroom was already light blue so the space only needed a single coat to make it feel new again.
When we went into the last bathroom of the house, the blue just wouldn’t have been a good fit with the tile and the countertop so we decided that this space would be better in gray and we called that that. If a space requires you to redo permanent or expensive items (like tile, hardware, counters, etc.) it’s way better to change the paint than to stick to a recipe.
Time for bedrooms. We knew that not all the bedrooms would be getting the same color paint and we wanted to alternate between the colors so that potential buyers would see the different vibes in each space. Also I was weirdly sentimental about Will’s room being light blue….so that made one room easy.
The master got blue too….to match the bathroom, since the two are open to one another.
And then the two remaining bedrooms got gray and beige.
In the basement, we didn’t really decide…the leftover paint decided for us! ha! Since we didn’t want to buy more paint, we looked at everything left in the bottom of the 5 gallon buckets and used what we had in each space. It was a money-saving trick! And it worked really well. The hallway got the rest of the beige….
And the living space and bedroom both got redone in gray. They were all close enough in color to work really well no matter where we put them but it just ended up looking AMAZING.
In the end, we got amazing feedback from all the people that saw the house – realtors, potential buyers and even the photographer who did the pictures for the listing….the paint colors were a HIT. They all said that it showed really well and that even though it was only three colors, that the house felt like it had a variety and that it gave off a clean and soothing and fully finished vibe.
Soooo….if you are in the market to sell your house and are thinking of giving it a quick coat of paint, I recommend these three hues and I also hope this was helpful in how we made the decision in what room got what! And because I know all of you locals will want to know….Carlos is sometimes available….here is his number….
Make sure you leave a message and mention that you heard about him from ME. He usually just takes messages and calls back. He will need to know three things….what space is it you want to have him paint, when you want it done by, and when he can come give you a quote. He visits the house to do quotes. Also – he usually paints with his wife and usually his quote is for labor only. If you have a number in mind, he tries really hard to work with your budget but in general, he does a good job for a fair price. Hope this helps! Happy painting!!!
Ashley- At Home with Ashley says
I never heard of painting your home certain colors! I’m an all white paint girl and that is honestly what I look for when buying/renting. But I love how your house turned out- so interesting!
Lori Plyler says
Oh my gosh! I did a double take when I saw the business card – Carlos painted the exterior of our house last year and is scheduled to paint the interior in a couple of weeks! We’ve recently recommended him to someone else. WOW – small world is right.
I had to google cerulean. I’ll be honest I could not imagine that color selling a bedroom as a restful space, definitely sounds too taste specific! 😛 glad you went with a softer tone!
You did a great job picking out colors. I wish there was a “Carlos” available in Michigan….he does great work! 🙂
Creastan Jack says
Tina Peterson says
Hi – would you mind sharing the exterior white that you used?
Karen L. says
Love these colors, Katie! They do make a big difference in selling a house well. We painted one of our bedrooms with the Edgecomb Gray and it’s just the best color—warm and neutral without looking too beige. It’s kinda like the sand on our nearby beaches. 🙂
Jake Becker says
Did you paint the ceilings, trim, crown molding, and interior doors in addition to the walls?
Thanks for sharing his contact info! Moved back to Gwinnett about six months ago and need to paint a few rooms in the new place.
Such a small world! He was over at our house today to give us another quote!
xo – kb
It’s Simply White by Benjamin Moore.
xo – kb
Yup….everything got untinted white. The Ceilings got flat and then the trim and doors got semigloss 🙂
xo – kb
Esther @denofsix says
I found grey owl during my search for a “grey grey” for some starter homes I was designing. It’s my absolute favourite (aside from white walls )!!
And your rooms prove it too!
April Adcock says
So, the big question is…did it help to sell your house??
Well it sold for more than asking price within a week so I would say YES.
xo – kb
Sheila S says
Love how yours look!! We are selling our 3 bedroom townhouse. cabinets are white. Realtor said gray or beigh for entire 2 story TH. Putting in new flooring. Love grayscale but is it too trendy for all?
I think that you can do a warmer gray that lends itself to beige. It all depends. Really stark grays are harder but I have heard that they do well in certain lighting.
xo – kb
Sally B says
Very Very nice! Excellent attention to detail.
Love all that you did! I have a small kitchen with oak cabinets. Do you think they should be painted?
If you are trying to sell your house then it might not be worth the effort. The cabinets – are they an unattractive color?
xo – kb
Do you mind if I ask- untinted white in what brand? Or was it the white off the shelf?
Most brands are about the same – it comes down to the consistency of paint that you prefer or what dry time you prefer. We went with Sherwin Williams here because that is what our painter prefers. And it comes right off the shelf – no tint – just a good shake from the store!
xo – kb