The Most Popular Exterior Paint Colors Of 2021

If you've been thinking about repainting your home and are browsing paint colors, you've come to the right place. It's a big job, but giving your home's exterior a fresh coat of paint is an easy way to transform its curb appeal, especially if you use a modern and stylish hue. And, while the abundance of available paint colors can be overwhelming, you're in luck: Every year, new trends emerge in the home design world, including exterior paint colors, to give you some guidance. These of-the-moment shades are chosen by top industry leaders who predict that they will not only make a splash but also enhance a home's market value.

So, if you haven't painted your home in the past five or 10 years and are looking for inspiration, why not consider one of 2021's trending colors? From neutral options to bold two-tone ideas, we've got the scoop on what's hot right now. Check out the paint color trend forecast below.

There's a dark new neutral on the block

Anyone who remembers the era of the McMansions recalls that beige and its color cousins were the neutral paint choice of the day. But things have changed, and gray is now the preferred neutral for the modern homeowner. According to design firm brick&batten, dark grays are making their mark when it comes to home exterior colors, ranging from charcoal gray to an almost sooty hue. These inky tints, such as Sherwin-Williams Iron Ore and Benjamin Moore Kendall Charcoal, play well with natural material accents, such as stone, bronze, metal, and copper. Together, they create a warm and welcoming appearance.

Brick&batten notes that these dark gray shades work best on homes in suburban or rural settings instead of urban ones because ample landscaping and foliage prevent the dark-colored structures from looking too harsh. So, if you're drawn to these inky shades, keep that in mind when paint shopping.

Two-toned paint is a chic look

A new and eye-catching choice in the world of exterior paint colors is to go two-toned. With ranch-style, split-level, and contemporary home designs becoming so popular in recent years, boasting multi-depth facades with distinctly separate planes, a two-toned color palette is the perfect way to highlight that multidimensionality, according to brick&batten. Homeowners are also using complementary hues on different levels of a home or on a single portion, like an addition, to further enhance the property's layout.

However, the keyword here is "complementary" — and we don't mean complementary as in shades on opposite sides of the color wheel. Houzz reports that to pull off the two-tone look, homeowners don't necessarily have to pick bold colors. Instead, for those with more of a classic design style, "a subtle color contrast is a good option." In order to find the right color combo, choose an initial hue that you like and then "simply go a couple of steps lighter or darker on the swatch card to find your coordinating hue."

Warm whites and greens are heating up

In the past, pure white was a popular choice for homeowners wanting a fresh yet timeless look for their property. Now, according to Construction 2 Style, warmer whites, such as Benjamin Moore White Dove and Sherwin-Williams Alabaster, are the preferred choice for 2021. The site also recommends using warm whites on exterior trim to add a nice contrast. If you liked the inky gray colors we recommended above, a warm white would be a great option for your trim. 

Along with these warm whites, warm earth-toned paints, such as green, are making a comeback. Construction 2 Style notes that green paint, such as Behr Mountain Sage, creates a "calm and earthy vibe" for a home's exterior aesthetic. "You'll see very dark forest greens — almost black forest greens — on the dark side, and more of those soft sages and mossy greens on the lighter side," the site notes, adding that all are "equally beautiful and earthy." 

We couldn't agree more.