• Debi Donaldson

It's Just Paint...

Updated: Nov 17, 2018

When talking with a seller as to how to make their home market ready, I frequently hear, “Well, we like bright colors. Buyers won’t care. After all, it’s just paint…”

Or is it?

At this point, I shudder. It is difficult at best to tell your client that the 1980s have called and want their colors back. Or that their favorite lime green ceiling has limited appeal to most buyers.

Think I’m wrong? You have approximately nine seconds to impress your potential buyers. Beginning at the driveway and walking to the door, you’ve got to have it together.

Put some time and thought into painting your door a complementary color to your exterior finishes. Explore for some great ideas on door colors. Never used this social media? Simply go to and search “door” + “colors” for amazing ideas.

Now imagine walking in that freshly painted front door with shiny hardware. When your buyers see color chaos inside your home, you’ve lost your mojo. Goodbye buyers.

Does this mean your home must be filled with boring colors? No. Here are a few tips for a successful home sale:

When it comes to home interiors, try to go with the same color throughout, especially in the main living areas. You’ll have a bit more leeway in bedrooms and the lower level, yet not much. Even in a rec room, people are turned off by dark or garish hues. Select a neutral, not a boring color. Benjamin Moore has some nice ones such as Revere Pewter, as does Sherwin-Williams’ Balanced Beige. The more neutral the color, the less flaws will show up such as slight imperfections in walls. However, please take the time to fill and sand any obvious flaws.

Flat paint, yes, flat paint, is a great option when your home is on the market. You can touch up any dents or imperfections. Try doing that with paints with a sheen. You’ll end up painting the entire wall.

For ceilings. Use a flat ceiling paint. With just a small dash of black added to it by the paint store, the ceiling won’t be quite as stark. This makes the room appear more inviting.

Remove all wallpaper, and I truly mean every speck of it. The days of wallpaper are over (at least for the time being), and your beautiful floral wallpaper will not cut it.

Recently I marketed a beautiful home. The current owners loved the wallpaper throughout the home from when the home had been a builder display 16 years prior. When it came time to sell, they didn’t think the wallpaper would have a detrimental effect on buyers. Boy, were they wrong. The same feedback time and again, and still they resisted. So, they finally conceded to taking the paper down in their large kitchen and eating area and their master bath. Guess what? An accepted offer within a week.

My suggestion? Think twice before placing your home on the market with splashy paint colors. More than likely, your home will be “the bridesmaid, not the bride.” Because buyers don’t see “it’s just paint.”

Want to open a conversation? Please contact me via text at 636.675.4545 or by email:


© 2019 Debi Donaldson, REALTOR® | Simply St. Louis Homes | 636.675.4545

  • Facebook - White Circle
  • Twitter - White Circle