Just like in fashion, beauty, and even home decor, interior paint colors go through trends as the years pass. What might be among the best paint colors for selling a house this year could change in five. The real estate market is hot, with 5.95 million homes up for sale in 2022 alone. There’s another prospective 6.1 million coming on the market in 2023. Even as prices remain high, most Americans are getting the asking price for their house, Clever reports.
Whether you’re thinking of listing your home or perhaps even renting it out, there’s one thing almost every real estate agent will tell you: what your home looks like inside really matters. Features like updated appliances and a sparkling clean home (maybe even a staged space) can really sell it. This includes paint, and believe it or not, there are actually best interior paint colors for selling a house. These are the hues that are proven to be more effective in getting a home sold. If you’re looking to do it yourself, check out these DIY painting tips to help.
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What the experts say about paint colors and selling your home.
EXIT Elite real estate agent Jennifer Goren, who works in New York’s competitive Long Island, New York market, sees firsthand which homes move fastest in relation to paint colors.
“The goal is always to have a potential buyer walk through the door and feel ‘at home’ or able to picture themselves living there,” says Goren. “I advise my sellers to choose light, neutral tones of white, gray, or taupe. These colors are very on trend right now and make all spaces feel open or bright.”
But it isn’t only about what’s considered “on trend” at the moment, either. With bright or loud paint colors — pinks, reds, dark blues, greens, or purples — sellers run the risk of alienating potential buyers due to that individual’s own personal preferences.
By sticking to a relatively neutral palette, it can be easier for buyers to envision the home as their own. After all, they can always customize later.
“Another benefit of these wonderful neutrals is they give buyers a perfect blank canvas to work with when it comes time to add their own personal decor,” Goren says.
Abigail Keyes, Orchard Listings Manager for Dallas-Fort Worth and Houston, agrees.
“In terms of why neutrals are a good idea, you really want your paint colors to blend into the background so potential buyers can envision the home as their own,” says Keyes. “Bright or loud colors can take away from the experience. With rising interest rates, many buyers are looking for more move-in ready homes. It will be to your benefit to paint your home in a way that can appeal to multiple buyers.”
Related: Use these Hobby Lobby hacks to dress up your home on a budget.
Four Best Interior Paint Colors for Selling a House
If you’re trying to sell your home, here’s a look at the four best paint colors and of course the shades in between.
Long gone are the days when a white room was associated with medical vibes or an unfinished, barely lived-in home. In fact, data from a recent Behr Paint study shows that white is one of the most beloved interior paint colors. It can even promote relaxation and self-care.
According to the study, 77% of homeowners agree that the color white makes them feel positive and 71% say it lowers their stress levels. The study also finds that 63% of homeowners think it is mood-boosting.
This could be attributed to myriad reasons, but a likely one is that the color white can brighten up a room — even one with minimal or no windows. It also has a knack for making a room feel larger than it really is.
“White is classic, fresh, and reflects natural light, creating an open, airy feel,” Goren says, adding that it’s perfect for kitchens and bedrooms. “The right paint color can make even the smallest room feel bigger.”
Eleanor Lynch, Orchard Broker Touring Specialist chose white for her own abode.
“I picked a warmer eggshell white for my new construction home because I had lived for almost two years in a bright white rental,” says Lynch. “Bright white always screams out ‘rental’ to me. Neutral is a fresh palette for most home buyers.”
She is definitely onto something. Behr named an eggshell-adjacent shade, the warm-toned Blank Canvas, their official color for 2023.
Related: How to Find Cheap Paint
Another popular interior paint color many consider to be a classic is gray. Light and neutral, gray can pair pretty well with anything. The color allows all kinds of homeowners to picture their own decor in the space.
“Gray shades are extremely popular right now and add instant sophistication to your space,” Gore says. “But gray also matches perfectly with other neutrals, like whites, creams, and taupes. I’ve seen Valspar’s Repose Gray and Agreeable Gray adorning some walls in sellers’ homes.”
The peak moment for gray (and its subsequent hybrid greige mentioned below) was the early 2010s. With that being said, it’s still popping up in homes everywhere.
“We’re currently using Sherwin-Williams Pediment and Sherwin-Williams Worldly Grey with Pure White trim on many homes listed through Orchard Brokerage,” Keyes says.
If you’re tired of the grays from the past decade, taupe is an easy pivot. Taupe is neutral and versatile enough to go with all kinds of decor, making it easily one of the best paint colors for selling a house.
“We’re still seeing gray tones, but because they were used on almost every flip and every new build in the last seven years, I think taupes are a refreshing option,” Keyes says. “Taupes are hot right now. They lend themselves to both cool and warm color palettes. That is appealing to a lot of buyers.”
If you’re new to taupe, it’s a moderate to dark gray with brown-esque undertones, which is exactly why, as Keyes suggests, it works so well with a variety of palettes.
“Taupe is another excellent warm neutral choice, it’s classic and sophisticated. One of my sellers recently chose Behr’s Perfect Taupe for her living/dining room,” Goren says.
If you’re a millennial, you’ve likely heard of, if not already decorated with, greige. A cross between gray and beige (hence its name), greige is another popular neutral that has amassed a kind of cult-like following. Thanks to its adaptability, it’s easy to see why. When it comes to greige as an interior paint color, it’s usually very effective, especially when selling.
“Like taupe, greige is a mix of gray and beige, but with different undertones,” Corey says. “Benjamin Moore’s Pale Oak and Balboa Mist are popular greiges.”