The One Thing Almost Everyone Gets Wrong When Moving Into a New Home

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Eva and Jason's Craftsman Bungalow

After getting the key and walking into your new, calm, and empty apartment, what's the first thing you do to make it your own? Move in the sofa? Pack the fridge with groceries? There are a thousand right answers and, according to one designer, one very wrong one.

Most people take advantage of an empty apartment to paint the walls before they ever move in, but waiting to paint after you’ve settled in a bit makes for a more cohesive space.

According to Toronto designer Judith Taylor, the one thing you should never do right after moving in is painting. In a post on Houzz titled 12 Key Decorating Tips to Make Any Room Better, Taylor gives us all a little peek into her process. Outlining 12 of her design guidelines, she walks through tips anyone can use to elevate their space, like hanging artwork at the right height and arranging furniture properly on a rug. But the tip at the top of her list is this: pick your paint color last.

She says:

There are thousands of paint colors with various tints, tones and shades. And each one looks different from home to home, because light sources vary, meaning what looks good in your current home might not in your new one. You want the color that best complements your upholstery, artwork, rug, and whatever else. You can pick that color only if your stuff is actually inside your home.

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Bree and Andy's DC Home

So move in your gear, then try out colors on the wall. And in the meantime, if you truly hate the wall color the unit came with, try one of these techniques for working with whatever wall color you’ve got.

(Image credits: June Bhongjan; Nicole Crowder)