How to choose exterior paint for your house

A fresh coat of paint can make a world of difference to any house, but what exterior paint should you use?  With so many types and colours available, make sure you’re getting the right one as it should last for up to 15 years.

What colour is best?

If you are wondering about painting your house a bold colour, you’ll need to check first that you are entitled to.  Even if the building is not Grade II listed, there may be an article 4 direction in place.  If there is one applied to your area, this means exterior paint for your housethat you do not have the right to paint your house any colour you choose.  Local authorities will be able to tell you if this is the case.

The most in demand exterior paint colours in the UK are grey, white and black.  Neutrals are always popular as they will fit in with the surroundings and look sophisticated.  Always consider the era you property was built in and the colour of the surrounding houses.

Choose the colour as you would for interior walls, get some samples and try them on the house exterior.  Notice the changes in colour as the light changes throughout the day. There will be a big difference for houses that are south facing, which get a lot of natural light, to those which are north facing.

If you have a colour in your house that you love, try a shade or two darker in exterior paint.  Again, try them first as colour can appear very different on larger surfaces and in natural light.

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Which colour for the front door?

The front door of the house is the focal point, and is where many people choose to stamp their personalities.  A deep colour looks stunningexterior paint for your house against a neutral colour house, or vice versa.  This is the ideal place to go bold, and will be much easier if you want to paint the door a different colour in the future.  Joyful and comforting colours like yellows and pink are much more common now and give a welcoming, warm look to the house.

For a chic look, consider a deep green or blue; you can choose the shades to reflect the surrounding nature, a sky blue or a green to match the foliage.  Rich colours go well with period houses, grey with more contemporary properties and whites will always have a classic, traditional feel on any style home.

For a north facing house, warmer colours like deep terracotta and reds are great to offset the blueish natural light. Dark blue and black will also work well.  For a south facing house, black is not a great option as it absorbs more light and heat so may warp the door.

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What type of paint should I choose?

exterior paint for your houseExterior paint has a much harder job than the paint you use inside; it needs to withstand the elements and stay looking good for years.  Make sure the paint has a weather resistant guarantee to protect from the rain, snow and wind.  It also needs to be UV resistant so that it will not fade in the sunlight.  It is worth investing in a good quality exterior paint as it will last much longer.

The two types of exterior paint are oil-based and latex.  Oil-based are used by professional painters as they are durable and water resistant, with a hard finish.  If your house was previously painted with an oil-based paint, you will need to stick with oil-based as latex will peel.  Latex paint is easier to use and can be just as durable these days.  If you choose latex paint, it must be one made specially for exteriors.

For the front door, exterior paint with a glossy finish is the most popular.  Eggshell or matte both look very contemporary but tend to show up any scuff marks.  Semi-gloss is a good choice as it reflects light so has a visible shine.  It is also scuff resistant, can withstand excess moisture and is much easier to clean.

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Painting your house is a big, time consuming job that needs the proper equipment and expertise.  If you want to make sure you get a professional finish, call in the experts.  Herts Decorators provide high quality and professional decorating services to our clients across Hertfordshire, book a free estimate with our team today!

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George Ryland