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Avoid This Color if You’re Painting Your Front Door

September 11th, 2023 by tisner

A Zillow study reveals paint colors that may wow prospective buyers — and colors that fall short.

Do you find yourself browsing homes on Zillow and pausing at a home that has a stand-out front door? Maybe it’s a bright red or a sunshine yellow. There’s a reason you paused — and it’s likely because the seller was hoping to catch your attention. And hey, it worked!

Compared to all of the other decisions you need to make about your home, the color of your front door can potentially boost — or reduce — the price of the offer you receive on your home when you’re selling it.

“You want the buyer to fall in love as soon as they pull up [to your home],”  said Dallas-based Zillow Premier Agent, Christie Cannon during a recent Zillow virtual panel. “Then they’re getting out of the car with their agent, they’re walking up to the front door. And that front door matters. It’s the pop of the color of the door that shows how much depth, how much personality, and how much sophistication [the home has].”

A recent Zillow® study* of more than 4,700 recent and prospective home buyers across the country revealed a number of paint colors that may help change buyer perception — for better or worse.

What colors should I avoid?

Gray is a popular color for a home’s interior, but no matter how trendy a color may be, there is a right way and a wrong way to do color, according to Mehnaz Khan, a color psychology specialist and interior designer in Albany, New York. And for the participants in Zillow’s study, the color gray just doesn’t hit the mark for a home’s front door.

The participants were randomly assigned images of a home with interior spaces and front doors painted in one of 11 or 10 colors, respectively. Each color received a score based on recent and prospective buyers’ perception of the home, likelihood of touring the home in person and the price they would be willing to pay for the home.

Zillow’s research finds that both recent and prospective buyers would offer $3,365 less for a home with a cement gray front door.

Going bold or experimental doesn’t appear to pay off either. While buyers surveyed were somewhat likely to say they liked a home that had a bright red front door, they were less interested in the listing and weren’t as eager to actually tour the home. In the same vein, front doors painted a saturated blue and olive green were associated with buyers being least likely to want to take a tour of the home. These two shades were also associated with a lower offer price — about $1,300 less.

Paint your front door these colors

Black front doors not only made a home seem more appealing, but recent and prospective buyers were more likely to say they would follow up for an in-person tour if the door was black. This classic color is popular for the second year in a row; a similar Zillow study of more than 1,500 participants that was conducted last year indicated a black front door was associated with the highest resale price compared to any other front door color the participants were shown. This shade could boost an offer price by about $6,450 more than the typical U.S. home value in 2022. That’s a major return on investment considering the cost of a can of paint.

While black wasn’t associated with a higher offer price in this year’s study, there is one color that prompted recent and prospective buyers to make a higher offer: mid-tone brown. It’s more than likely survey respondents could have interpreted this rosy, terracotta hue not as a paint color, but, instead, an oak wood, whose durability and timelessness could prompt shoppers to offer more for a home. In our study, this shade was associated with a $300 higher offer compared to an offer for a white front door.

Still, white front doors, along with those painted a chalky blue, were associated with higher intentions to tour the home, as well as higher general interest from home shoppers. And once you can bring prospective buyers through the entryway, your interior staging can do the rest of the work.

Of course, just because you chose your front door color wisely doesn’t mean you can guarantee you’ll maximize the price you’ll ultimately sell for. Numerous other cosmetic factors, including curb appeal, could skew a buyer’s perception of your home. It’s also important to consider the color and material of your home’s exterior to determine if a paint color is a good fit. Need more color inspiration? Here are the best colors to paint your home’s interior if you’re looking to sell it.

*This study included 4,700 participants across the U.S. who were randomly assigned images of a home with interior spaces and front doors painted in one of 11 or 10 colors, respectively. Each color received a score based on buyers’ perception of the home, likelihood of touring the home and the price they would be willing to pay for the home. 

By and photo credits: Zillow

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