A home should be a visual expression of the person who lives there, right? While this may be true most of the time, the advice could change when it comes to selling your house. According to a new study by Zillow, certain paint colors can make your house sell for more—and some hues can even have the opposite effect. “People don’t buy homes every day, so they’re trying to quickly process a lot of complex information in an area where they don’t have a lot of experience,” Amanda Pendleton, Zillow’s home-trend expert, explained in a statement. “That uncertainty is likely why buyers rely on color as a powerful visual signal that a home is modern and up-to-date, or tired and needs maintenance.”
According to the report, which is based on surveys of 4,700 recent and prospective home buyers across the country, dark gray walls correlated to higher offer prices in every room studied: kitchen, living room, bathroom, and bedroom. A deep graphite color in the kitchen can help a home sell for an estimated $2,512 more than similar ones. Opt for a midtone gray and the offer could go up even more, with the analysis showing the choice could get sellers up to $2,553 more. White kitchens, on the other hand, could result in buyers offering up to $612 less. Dark gray in the living room also corresponded to higher offer prices of at least $1,755 more.
“Buyers have been exposed to dark gray spaces through home improvement TV shows and their social media feeds,” Mehnaz Khan a color psychology specialist and interior designer in Albany, New York, said in a statement. However, the reason gray paint colors can make your home sell for more might also have to do with more subconscious reasons. “Gray is the color of retreat,” Khan added. “As we come out of the pandemic and return to our hectic lives, buyers want home to be a refuge. They want to withdraw and escape from the uncertainty of the outside world, and rooms enveloped in dark gray can create that feeling of security.”
Even so, an all-over gry makeover isn’t the key to a quick sale. Gray floors could hurt sellers, with Zillow research showing prospective buyers would offer an estimated $3,365 less. It’s also worth noting that the data showed buyers prefer black front doors to those painted gray.