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Choosing Paint Color Palettes for Your Residential Units and Common Spaces

Choosing Paint Color Palettes for Your Residential Units and Common Spaces Multifamily Executive (07/01/17)

Choosing paint color palettes for apartment community common spaces and individual rental units is a task many painters and property managers struggle with.

The article surveys color experts at KILZ Paint, the makers of Complete Coat Paint-and-Primer-In-One, for their solutions to some of the toughest paint questions. They maintain that when experimenting with multiple colors, it's best to pair colors that share a connection to each other -- colors that sit next to each other on the color wheel or that have the same undertone.

For those looking to use colors to make common spaces feel bigger, apartment operators should know that light, cool colors tend to create a distancing effect, stretching the perception of proximity and expanding the feel of a room.

Some colors, meanwhile, are associated with luxury. These include black, gold, and deep purple. For those managers aiming to improve the durability of a color, KILZ Paint recommends neutrals -- grays, whites, tans, and taupes -- all of which can expand the life of a wall color. All four tones are easily updated by changing out accent colors.

One challenge where some operators stumble is in choosing door colors for units. Apartment door colors can be conservative or expressive as desired. Black, brown, charcoal, beige, and white are generally the classic door color choices for their versatility and neutrality. However, if the community's management permits, eye-popping door colors like red, coral, aqua, and yellow can provide a fun punch of color that attracts prospective residents and makes existing ones feel at home.

Finally, some operators are aiming to go the extra mile by pairing interior apartment color with exterior common space color. To bridge the difference, it is common practice to keep at least one color in common. Then, update all other accents as necessary in order to keep all spaces from feeling dated.