Looking to give the outside of your home a fresh finish? This can seriously up your curb appeal and create great ambiance before you even step foot inside. To help you get a great exterior paint job, heed this advice from Sara McLean, color expert and stylist for Dunn-Edwards.

– The main body color is what most of the home will be painted, and it sets the tone for the rest of the home.

– If you have a change in material, such as an entry feature, second roofline, dormer windows, or any other secondary main material feature, include a second main color to complement the first.

– Add an accent color to highlight smaller details, such as doors and shutters.

– Tie everything together with a trim color around the windows, fascia and eaves.

– If you're not ready to paint the entire exterior, you can still give your house a facelift with some practical touch-ups on accent pieces. Fresh, bright paint on the front door, stair rails, balconies, shutters or window sashes can make a statement. Plus, it's easy to change the color on these smaller details every year or two.

– What direction does your home face? If it receives full southern or western sun exposure, those areas will fade faster than the back or sides of the house. Certain colors, like yellow, orange and red will fade faster. On the company's color chips, the letter "I" indicates colors that are recommended for interiors only.

– Select a high-quality paint to help reduce UV color fade, look better and last longer.

– Choose a color scheme that blends with the neighborhood. If you belong to a Homeowner’s Association (HOA), check to see if there are any color restrictions.  

– You can minimize attention to unattractive elements, such as downspouts, air conditioning units, vents and gutters by painting them the same color as the wall of the house or by choosing a trim color that’s a similar shade.

Source: Dunn-Edwards

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