Factors when selecting interior paint colors

Does your home need a facelift?

Now is a good time to look at the list of things that need to be done and choose the tasks that can be completed. Changing the color scheme or just painting to freshen up the look of the home is easy to put off each year.

As you consider the changes you want to make, think about the importance of color and the part it plays in the home. Colors in the home portray personalities, influences mood, defines space and suggests function and temperature.

There are many factors to consider when choosing colors for the first time or just to change the décor of the home. Keep in mind the room size, shape, orientation, use, personal preference and lighting. Do you want to make the rooms look larger? What colors do you and your family prefer?

Some tips to help make color choices and planning easier.

* Break the home into categories, such as large and small rooms, north or south orientation and different levels of use.

* Consider the people who live in the home.

* Decide on the effect you are trying to create, such as formal or casual, warm or cool.

* Evaluate existing furnishings. Will they fit in a new color scheme or is it time to replace certain items?

* Subdivide the rooms and furnishings into main areas (floor, walls or ceiling), secondary areas (window treatments, large furnishings) and accent area. The room scheme is primarily determined by main and secondary areas.

* Plan future purchases. Keep samples or swatches of existing colors handy for reference while shopping.

* If you are planning to sell the home in the near future, consider what colors might sell best.

When selecting paint for a small room, consider painting all the walls the same color. Using a flat paint in a light color, the walls will appear to recede.

For an oversized room, consider trimming window frames and moldings in a contrasting or complementary color to the wall. But remember for resale value not everyone likes painted woodwork.

Use a darker or muted paint color to   visually decrease the room size. If the room is long and narrow, painting the end wall a darker or contrasting color will help square off the room. For rooms with poor lighting, use pale colors to reflect more light. Glossy paint finishes also will reflect more light.

Remember to consider how the walls flow from room to room and where there is a good break when deciding to paint.

Take paint chip samples home to test in day and night light. Colors often appear darker or more vibrant when painted on a large wall.

The colors you choose for your home needs to reflect your likes and fit in with your family’s lifestyle. Color trends change quite often so consider your budget and how long you will need to keep the colors and furnishings before you can make changes  again. Keep in mind the color scheme in the whole house. Even though dark colors and mixed colors may be in style, a basic light wall may be best for your family at the time.

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