Designing & Inspiration

How to Choose the Right Colours for Your Exterior

Choosing the exterior colours of your new home can be one of the most challenging decisions that you make during your home build. You want your home to have street appeal and establish your home’s personality and the best way to achieve that is by choosing the right colours and finishes. But choosing the right colour for your exterior extends to more than just deciding what paint colour to use. Aspects such as the overall impression the house will make, planning the driveways, entrances, the fencing and landscaping. The exterior materials of the building including the roofing along with other materials all need to be considered when choosing your exterior colour palette. How these work as a cohesive story and how they work in the local environment, how they are maintained and therefore withstand the test of time. 

While there are no hard and fast rules to choosing the right colours for your home, we’ve put together a list of the key things to consider when choosing a colour scheme that works for you and your home’s surroundings. 

Choose the right colours for your home’s surrounding environment

One of the most essential elements to consider when choosing your exterior colours is your home’s environment. 

Not only does the selection of exterior colours play a vital role in setting the aesthetic of any street but taking cues from the surrounding environment can help you choose shades that match the streetscape. Treating the whole exterior palette including the landscaping; can make your home more and be aesthetically pleasing whether it’s for your enjoyment or to ultimately help retain the resale value.

The colours and style of your exterior should set the palette for your interior, helping the flow from outside to inside. The colours, the materials & the style should be a reflection of your taste but working with the needs of the environment help enhance your comfort level.

Here at G.J. Gardner, we pride ourselves in building liveable houses and when choosing your exterior colour palette, we urge our customers to consider your area’s environment, climate and the surrounding elements you’re building around and becoming a part of.

Trees and tree canopies help keep the environment cool so anchoring your colour choices to the area seems more relevant to use deeper colours. When there is no established landscaping and there are long periods of high-temperature days, lighter colours will help reflect more of the suns heat on your roof on those hot sunny days.

In hot climates, like in Western NSW, Queensland or the Northern Territory, choosing lighter colours like whites, soft greys, or warmer beiges and taupes for your roof will help reduce the temperature inside your home. 

These colours are good at reflecting the sun’s heat from the home and absorbs less of the sun’s energy than darker colours, which can help cool off your home. This will also help your house be more energy-efficient and could help reduce the need for cooling systems.

In contrast, a darker roof will keep your home a few degrees warmer during winter. In cooler climates like in Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania, deeper colours such as charcoals, navy and deep browns will give a stronger yet cosier look while keeping your home warm.

COLORBOND® steel’s range of roofing colours are designed especially for Australian homes and have a wide range of colours available offering a solution for all environments.

​It incorporates Thermatech® Solar Reflectance Technology and is designed to increase the solar reflectance properties of COLORBOND® steel and reduce heat absorption. It is available in 21 of the roofing and walling colours as well as all of the standard colours for COLORBOND® Ultra steel and COLORBOND® steel Matt. According to Colorbond® colour consultant Christine McCoy, if you are looking for a lighter colour roof to keep your home cool, COLORBOND® steel’s colours such as Evening Haze®, Surfmist®, Classic Cream and Shale GreyTM will be the best options. On the other hand, if you are looking for a darker coloured roof, COLORBOND® steel’s Ironstone®, Monument® and Woodland Grey® are the better choices for you. 

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What is your desired aesthetic?

The desired style of your home should be one of the most significant influencing factors when choosing exterior colours. Consider if you want the house to have a particular aesthetic, as most home designs and trends will have a particular colour palette associated with it.

Whether you want to stay true to the initial style inspiration or change it up a little, look at examples of popular house styles.

The popular Hamptons styles were inspired by beach lifestyles so cool greys, whites, taupes, navy and charcoal accents of dusky blush, red & eucalyptus green.

Use the Australian homestead inspiration of warmer and deeper greys, taupes, warm whites & earthy reds as well as grey/ greens as accents as a more Australianised take on the popular home style.

On the other side of the home-style scale, urban or more modernist designs can work with the extreme contrasts of stronger bolder charcoals, cool mid-toned greys, taupe and white. 

Of course, all of these colourways incorporate materials to contrast or enhance the schemes: bricks, render & concrete, timber and stone.  

Textures and colours work hand in hand and softer more matt textures are making an impact on exterior selections with curves, rustic or reclaimed looking bricks, honed or rough-cut stone and aged timbers making us give our homes a more lived-in more nature-inspired look. 

Ultimately, the colour of your home needs to suit your personal style and the desired look, feel and style of your home. 

Here at G.J. Garner, we have a range of home designs and facades to suit any style – if you need help choosing which facade you want for your home, get in touch with our G.J. experts.

Consider what other materials you are using

Alongside the colour of your roof, you should factor in any other materials that you are using on your home’s facade or during landscaping. Often the opportunity to use natural materials and their colours as part of the palette for a home’s exterior is overlooked.

Before choosing an exterior colour palette, you should look to consider any elements like brick, stone or wood; as well as any landscaping features, like tiles, fences, paths, cladding and driveways. 

All of the external features provide an opportunity to enrich a colour palette and can work together to improve the overall cohesiveness of your home. 

Talk to a G.J. Gardner Consultant

Choosing the right colours for your exterior is a massive decision to undertake on your own. That is why working with G.J. Gardner Homes Consultants is the best way to find the home design for your budget and lifestyle. Contact one of our friendly team members today.


1. Thermatech® technology is not available in Night Sky®, or non-standard colours, and is not available in COLORBOND® Metallic steel, COLORBOND® Coolmax® steel or COLORBOND® Intramax® steel. Results will depend on roof colour, level and location of insulation, type and location of building shape and function. COLORBOND® steel, BlueScope, the BlueScope brand mark, ® colour names and ™ colour names are registered trademarks of BlueScope Steel Limited. ™ colours names are trademarks.