17 Feb 2017
For anyone who has ever viewed a house painted in a fetching shade of pink or bedazzled with retro wallpaper, you’ll know the lasting impression colour can make.
Striking the balance between homely and eye-catching and magnolia and forgettable can be tricky. How do you make your house not only look right, but feel right for perspective buyers?
A lesson in the psychology of colour can be invaluable when presenting your house on the market. The trick is to use these colours in the most tasteful and contemporary way possible if you’re selling your house in Ireland.
Colour at home counts
Home decor is no longer seen as just a matter of making your home aesthetically beautiful. Experts believe that the colours used to decorate can have a profound effect on the emotions and behaviour of the residents. "Colour is a universal, nonverbal language, and we all intuitively know how to speak it," says Leslie Harrington, a US-based colour consultant.
Although it cannot be proven scientifically, it is widely believed that certain colours work well to encourage certain activities. This can be a powerful magnet for home-buyers viewing a house. If a viewer walks into a sunny yellow home office, they are more likely to think “I feel focused and energised in this room, I think I could do well here”.
Here’s a room-by-room run down on the colours that will help buyers feel right at home in your house.
Colour for the kitchen
Like Cornishware pottery or Willow-pattern delph, blue and white have always been associated with kitchens, and feel very comforting. White, or course, is as fresh and clean as you would like in a kitchen.
This colour combo can be slightly cold, however, so consider accessorising with slightly earthier pieces like fruit baskets or terracotta canisters. Choose a reddy blue (it does exist!) like indigo. Take inspiration from arguably the most covetable kitchen of all time, Diane Keaton’s character’s kitchen in Something’s Gotta Give.
What works in the living room?
Warm, earthy tones like burnt oranges, reds, browns and beiges stimulate conversations and are good for social spaces like sitting and living rooms. However, these tones can look dated and over-powering, especially if your home is one of the many Irish homes that boast orange-tinted varnished pine woodwork (speaking of, a lick of white wood paint is an instant space-brighter. Do it!).
How to decorate the dining room
Red is a stimulating colour, great for a dining room. In addition to encouraging conversation around the table, it also whets the appetite of diners by stimulating appetite, adventure and sense of smell. It may even fool them into thinking your Bolognaise is better than it actually is!
Sleep well colours
With colour, it’s important to remember that the darker the hue, the more pronounced its effect is believed to be. Red is stimulating, and the increase in blood pressure and heart rate caused by a deep, dark red can be suited to chatty living rooms. It’s the last thing you want when hoping to retire for a restful night’s sleep. Choose a cool blue, green or lavender for the bedroom.
Colour my bathroom
People consider their bathroom a peaceful sanctuary, or at least they’d like to. A clean yet warm colour combo is perfect to encourage a spa-like atmosphere. Take inspiration from the ultimate relaxation zone- the beach.
Choose sandy beiges with subtle pops of ‘water colours’ like aqua and turquoise. And incase you didn’t already know, clean white bathroom suites are the only way to go if you’re hoping to make a sale.
What works in the office?
Citrus colours induce productivity and focus, exactly what you want in an office area. Yellow is commonly used in office stationery like post-its, highlighters and even jotters to encourage learning. A highlighter pen shade of neon yellow may not be the most attractive option however, so choose a more subtle tone.
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