The Color You Should Never Paint Your Patio, According to Real Estate Pros

published Jun 8, 2023
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Homes with patios have become coveted over the past few years, as homeowners and house hunters alike realized the value of having outdoor spaces to escape to. And just like those indoor spaces they’re trying to leave behind, people like their patios and decks to be a reflection of their own personal style, which is why some folks paint the space to spruce it up. 

However, not all colors are created equal when it comes to those outdoor living areas. I spoke with three real estate agents to find out what colors you should never use on patio surfaces — and which ones are always surefire winners. 

Dark Colors

Colors like black and navy blue can absorb heat, which may make them unpleasant to touch, especially on a hot summer’s day. “Additionally, black surfaces easily show dust, debris, and footprints, requiring frequent cleaning and maintenance,” explains Alex Platt, with the Platt Group at Compass in Boca Raton, Florida. “Similarly, dark brown can also absorb heat, resulting in an uncomfortable surface, and it may lack vibrancy, making the outdoor space feel darker.”

Bold Colors

Your reds, oranges, and yellows may make a statement, but they aren’t a good pick if you’re hoping to sell anytime soon, according to Denis Smykalov with Wolsen Real Estate. “While bold colors are fun and can add personality to a patio, they can be distracting and take away from the overall beauty of the outdoor space,” he says, adding that certain colors (like hot pink or bright orange) can even be a turnoff for house hunters. 

Another potential downside of bold colors? Unwanted guests. “Be cautious with colors that attract insects, such as bright yellows or specific floral patterns, as they may increase the presence of buzzing insects,” Platt adds.

Dramatic Contrasts

Giving your house an exciting makeover using a variety of colors can seem like a fun way to set your home apart, but it may give hopeful homeowners a headache instead. “Using too many contrasting colors on a patio surface or furniture can be overwhelming and create a disjointed look,” says Smykalov. “Bold stripes or patterns may be a turnoff for some potential buyers.”

What to Do Instead

When it comes to patio colors, it’s important to tread carefully, Smykalov says. “Stick to neutral colors like beige or light gray and save the pops of color for accents like throw pillows or planters.”

Carmelo Carrasco, an interior designer, Realtor, and COO at Axel Property Management, adds that light colors are also a great option, especially in sunnier places, because they “will reflect the sun’s rays, keeping the area cool and comfortable.” As a bonus, they can make your patio seem larger than it is. “Light colors also make a space look bigger and more inviting,” he says.

Ultimately, Platt explains it’s best to consider your personal preferences, desired style, and local climate when choosing the perfect patio style and color. When you take all three into consideration, it’s kind of impossible to make the wrong choice.