Choosing the Right Roofing Color

rainbow colored roof structure

A lot of people don't realize how much time and thought actually goes into choosing the right roof color until it's time to actually do it. Picking a color scheme for your roof isn't always easy when there are so many different materials, shades, and colors to choose from. It can be especially difficult because you're most likely going to have to live with it for the next 20 to 30 years.

Although the task of choosing the right roof color may seem like a daunting - yet very important – one, there are a few things to consider that will help you make your decision.

1. Decide on Dark or Light

Although there are many colors to pick from, the easiest choice to make should be whether you prefer dark or light colors when it comes to your roof.

Some people think dark colors are more likely to have better heat retention than the lighter colors. According to a federally funded study, this is only true for black shingles, as the plywood sheathing underneath the shingles were found to be 10 degrees warmer on a sunny day compared with white shingles. However, the study also found that the difference between other colors like grey and brown had no significant difference.

Of course, there are benefits to having white roofing as well.

Basically, the choice of having either a dark or light roof is all up to your preference.

2. Base it on Bricks

brick house

The next thing to consider is the colors of the bricks on your house—if you have a brick exterior, of course. Since doors, siding, and shutters can always be changed easily, you shouldn't base your roofing color choice on those, but bricks are permanent.

Try to find a color for your roof that compliments or matches your house's brick colors.

3. Match Exterior Paint

You will also want to take into consideration the color of your exterior paint. If you love the color of your front door, your shutters, garage, or siding, and you don't want to change it, then yes, making sure your new roof matches those colors is a good idea.

Or, if you want to change the outside color of your home, make sure to keep that in mind when roof shopping.

To make sure your roof matches the exterior of your house, go to the local hardware store and put the paint chips of your selected colors next to the roof materials you are considering. If it looks good to you, then that's all that matters.

4. Add Dimension

Although you want your roof color to match the rest of your house exterior (bricks, siding, doors, windows, shutters, and garage), you also don't want it to be an exact color match, or even too similar.

When you choose a hue that's almost a perfect match to the siding or bricks, it ends up being monotone and boring. Instead, you want to choose a roof color that compliments the outside of your house.

5. Keep it Simple

Another thing to keep in mind is simplicity. Keep your roof simple. As a rule of thumb,you shouldn't go crazy with multiple colors or patterns on your roof because chances are your home's exterior is already busy enough with different brick colors, stone facades, or wooden clapboard siding.

Choosing a crazy color for your roof, or having too many colors or patterns, can be overwhelming to look at. When choosing a roof color, you don't want to be too monotone or too complex.

6. Look at it in Different Lighting

grey roofing with orange trees in the background

Before making a final decision, make sure to compare several different color choices in different lighting. Look at the sample in both the sun and the shade, during the day time and at night. While checking how it looks in different lighting, make sure your shingle sample is placed up against your home's exterior surface.

7. Consider the Resale Value

Finally, it's important to remember that if you are thinking about selling your house within the next few years, try to pick a roof color that will appeal to the masses. Just because you love the idea of having a bold, bright roof color doesn't mean everyone will.

One roof color in particular that makes selling a house difficult is green. Green shingles can look amazing on some homes, but unfortunately they're not well-loved. To make selling your house easier, consider choosing a roof color that's easy on the eyes but also adds character and charm.

8. Reflect Your Personal Taste

Even if you are planning on selling your home at some point in the future, you should still select a roof color that you love. Especially if you aren't planning on moving any time soon!

Because everyone has their own unique style and taste, try to think of colors that you are naturally drawn to. Maybe even go for a drive around your neighborhood to get an idea of what is out there, and make sure to pay particular attention to houses with the same exterior as your house, whether it is brick, stone, siding, or stucco. Then make a list of materials and colors you love and ones to to avoid before heading to the hardware store to pick out your roofing samples.