How to Choose a Roof Color for Optimal Home Resale Value

choosing the right roofing color

Whether you want to make the right choice now to future-proof your home’s value and looks, or you’re getting ready to sell your house right now, choosing the right roof color can be a tricky and important decision.

Choosing the right roof color can significantly influence your home’s resale value because it can account for up to 40% of your home’s exterior appearance. It’s crucial to pick a roof color that goes well with the rest of your home’s exterior and does not clash with your neighbors or surroundings.

You need to pay attention to and consider many things when choosing a new roof color to optimize for resale, so let’s take a more in-depth look at what you should keep in mind and how you can go about picking the right color for your home.

Choosing the Best Roof Color for Home Resale

When selling a home, buyers tend to look at two primary things regarding the roof: condition and cohesiveness. The cohesiveness of your roof with the rest of the house and its surroundings often depends on the color.

Choosing a roof in a color that goes well with the rest of the house and fits the area can make the entire property more appealing to buyers.

Roof Color Should Go Well With the Rest of Your Home

When approaching a house for the first time, the cohesiveness and colors of the exterior are extremely important to make an excellent first impression. Ideally, the color of your roof should pleasantly accent the rest of the house without drawing too much attention, giving the property a put-together feel.

Architectural Style
It can be challenging to know where to start on your journey of choosing the right roof color for your home, but luckily your house’s architectural style can point you in the right direction. Most residential architectural styles have specific roof colors that work well and generally create a cohesive look.

By no means do you have to choose a roof color that stereotypically works well with your home’s style, but it’s a great way to draw some inspiration.

Below are a few of the most common residential home styles and the roof colors that tend to go well with them:

  • Beach - Light grays and blues
  • Bungalow - Medium grays, greens, and browns
  • Cape Cod - Medium to dark grays and browns
  • Colonial - Dark browns, grays, and greens
  • Contemporary - Light or dark grays
  • Country - Medium blues and browns
  • Craftsmen - Medium to dark grays and browns
  • Farmhouse - Medium to dark grays
  • Log - Medium browns and grays
  • Mediterranean - Medium browns, reds, and grays
  • Mid-Century Modern - Dark or light grays
  • Modern - Dark grays and blacks
  • Ranch - Medium grays and browns
  • Spanish - Dark reds and browns
  • Southwest - Dark browns and reds
  • Tudor - Medium browns and grays
  • Victorian - Medium to dark grays

Siding Material
Another way to help you decide on a roof color is to look at the siding on your home and see which colors typically go well with the material. When choosing a roof color, you should consider your home’s siding material, but it’s not foolproof because most siding materials come in various hues.

Below are a few of the most common siding materials and roof color combinations that go well together:

  • Vinyl - Browns, grays, and greens
  • Wood Board - Grays, blues, and browns
  • Log - Browns and grays
  • Brick - Grays and browns
  • Metal - Blacks, grays, and blues
  • Stone - Browns and grays

Siding Color
It’s crucial to pick a roof color that works well with your home’s siding color to give the whole structure a put-together and appealing look.

Below are a few of the most popular siding colors and corresponding roof colors that generally look great together:

Siding ColorBest Contrasting Roof ColorsBest Non-Contrasting Roof Colors
WhiteBrown, black, greenGray, light blue
Tan/BeigeRed, dark blue, blackLight brown
BrownBlack, blue, dark brownGray
GrayDark gray, blue, blackLight gray, white
BlackBrownBlack, dark gray
RedBlack, grayBrown
YellowBlack, dark grayGreen, blue, light brown
GreenWhiteLight brown, gray
BlueBlack, darker blueWhite, light gray

House Size
Your house size can also help you to choose a roof color. Generally, larger homes do well with darker roofs, while smaller homes look nice with lighter ones.

This rule is a vast generalization, and there are plenty of exceptions and times where you might want to break it intentionally.

Large or tall houses generally look nice with a dark roof that contrasts the siding or outside of the home. The dark roof makes the structure seem less expansive and daunting and gives it a welcoming, grounded look.

Small or short homes tend to work well with a lighter roof that doesn’t contrast with the siding to make the house seem larger, open, and more inviting. Dark roofs on small or short homes give the structure an old cottage look, and while that’s a style that you may be going after, it can make the house seem smaller.

There are no hard and fast rules for what color roofs you can and can’t use on particular house sizes. It’s just important to consider the way different roof tones and house sizes work together to either create or discourage potential buyers.

neighborhood of homes

Keep In Mind Local Architecture, Region, and Climate

Many regions have local trends that run throughout most of their architecture, so it’s essential to take note if your home is in one of these locations. It largely depends on the area because, in some regions, all the houses look very similar while others embrace more individuality and uniqueness in their architecture and roof tones.

For example, coastal regions tend to have lighter colored roofs and many Cape Cod and beach-style homes. Going with a dark charcoal roof while everyone around you has a light gray or blue roof is usually not the best idea.

Below is a list of a few regions and locations with their general roof style and design culture:

  • Coastal areas often have many light and airy colors with many light grays, blues, and whites.
  • Forested areas tend to lean toward natural colors found in the local environment like browns, darker grays, and greens.
  • Desert areas usually use a lot of concrete and tile for their roofs with many grays, beiges, browns, and reds.
  • Mountain regions often have a lot of wooden architecture and many darker browns, grays, blues.

Some people have the false expectation that going against the grain with the color of your roof can help your home stand out on the market, but it will make your property less appealing to buyers most of the time.

Your home’s roof doesn’t have to be a carbon copy of everyone else’s, but you should keep the local architecture and regional trends in mind when making your final decision.

The local weather and climate can also influence your choice of roof color. If it is very sunny and hot where you live, it’s best to go with a lighter roof that won’t absorb as much heat and raise the temperature in your home. Brightly colored roofs will also fade faster in some climates.

Ensure Your Roof Color Blends In With Your Neighborhood

Siding Material
In addition to considering the residential house roof colors and trends in your region, it’s also important to make sure your roof doesn’t look out of place in your neighborhood. Most buyers don’t want a home that starkly stands out from the rest, so if you’re choosing a roof color and intend to resell eventually, it’s a good idea to blend in.

Many neighborhoods will have some recommendations or rules for roof colors as well. Make sure to contact your homeowner’s association or check your CC&Rs if your neighborhood has one.

If you live in an area without any restrictions on roof colors, it’s still a good idea to make sure the color you pick goes well with any surrounding houses and buildings. You don’t have to choose one that directly matches, but generally, you’ll want to choose a similar shade in the same color family as your neighbor’s roofs.

Consider the Energy Efficiency of Your Roof Color

The roof is one of the largest surfaces on the exteriors of most houses, so ensuring that it is as energy efficient as possible can be well worth the effort and can save you a lot of money over the long term.

When it comes to the most energy-efficient roof color, it’s pretty simple. Dark-colored roofs tend to absorb heat, while lighter-colored roofs are much better at repelling heat.

However, the color of your roof is only a small part of the energy efficiency of your roof and home. The amount and quality of insulation that you have in your roof, attic, and walls significantly impacts your home’s energy efficiency. The material, thickness, and finish of your roof are also important factors.

Many coatings are available for dark-colored roofs that can help reflect sunlight and heat to make your home more energy-efficient. In locations with lots of tree cover or prevalent cloudy weather, the color of your roof for energy efficiency reasons is less of a concern.

Consult a Professional and Choose a Color You Enjoy

Choosing a roof color can be a stressful and confusing process with all of the considerations and options out there.

If you’re working with a builder or agency, it’s always a good idea to bring up the subject, and they are usually more than happy to go over your options with you. You can also bring in an outside professional roofer to listen to your ideas and give their opinion on your best color choices.

Sometimes you may have two equally good roof color options to choose from, so in these cases, go with the color that you enjoy most and will match the best with the feel and style of your home.

Does Roof Color Affect Your Home’s Resale Value?

Whether you’re putting a new roof on your home right before you sell or you’re planning for the future, you may be wondering if the color of your roof actually affects your home’s resale value.

The actual color of your roof does very little for the value of your home, but what’s more important is the coordination between your home’s exterior and roof. According to a study by Owens Corning, 91% of home buyers said that a coordinating roof and exterior color increase a property’s value.

The previously mentioned study also stated that 94% of buyers and 91% of real estate professionals agreed that a color-coded home exterior increased the perceived value of a home. The coordination between the color of your home and your roof is far more important than whether you get gray, black, or beige shingles.

What is the Most Popular Roof Color?

Roof color trends, while they do ebb and flow like most things, are pretty consistent throughout the years. But what is the most popular roof color?

Most single-family homes in the U.S. have very neutral colored roofs. This color trend usually results from home designers and builders taking the safe color option because grays, light browns, and beiges go with nearly all home exteriors.

Some of the most popular residential home roof colors are:

  • Beige (Cream, stone, off-white)
  • Light brown (Tan, khaki, sand)
  • Gray (Taupe gray, stone, charcoal gray)
  • Blue (Denim, sky, harbor)
  • Green (Hunter, forest, muted green)

Final Thoughts

Generally, it’s a safe bet to go with a neutral roof color when you intend to sell the house, but as long as you choose colors for the home’s exterior that go well together, it doesn’t have to be boring. Make sure to account for the local style, neighborhood trends, and local architecture, and you should be good to go.

Finding the right roof color for your home can be a tedious process, and it may take some time to find the perfect shade. It’s well worth the effort to find the right one, though, because a well-put-together house with a color-coded exterior has a lot of curb appeal and excellent resale value.

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