Request a Quote

Get a free re-siding quote from local preferred installers.


Find a Remodeler

I agree I have read the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.

Find a Dealer

in the USA or Canada


Find a Builder

See homes from around the country that were built with James Hardie® products.

Use our design tool to create the home of your dreams

Design / Home Exterior Design Tips / Complete Home Design

ColorPlus Technology In this section The Effects of Color

Color Harmony

Landscaping in Color

Top Combinations

Complete Home Design

Tips for Using Color

Tips for Going Green

Seven Secrets

Balance is all about making sure your home has a unified look and that one aspect doesn't overpower all other elements. Sometimes without realizing it, people take a perfectly balanced home façade and by using color, unbalance it. This often happens when using more than one color on the body of the home, or over-complicating the color scheme. Don't be discouraged from using a more detailed color combination. But it's important to consider what you're doing and consider complete home design. In fact, we want every home to have the right exterior for the right climate. James Hardie is unveiling a new concept to the building industry—siding that's engineered for climate. We call it the HardieZone® System.

For the ultimate in performance with HardieZone products, add ColorPlus® Technology. This proprietary process involves applying consistent, multiple coats of paint that was created especially for the demands climate places on a home's exterior. Then, the paint is baked-on in a closely controlled factory environment. The end result is a beautiful consistent finish that lasts up to 2x's longer.* So you can design your home for lasting beauty.

* James Hardie accelerated weathering tests compared with brush applied national paint in lab environment

James Hardie® Complete Home Design

Complete Home Design

Some tips to consider:

  1. When using two body colors, more often than not you should use the darker color on the bottom half of the home. This anchors the home to the ground because most natural environments fade from dark to light. Look at a landscape painting — the earth is dark and there is generally a gradient to a lighter sky. View our Gallery of Homes for inspirational color ideas.

  2. Your trim color does not have to be the lightest color in your combination. The eye is attracted to light colors before dark colors so having light color trim will attract the viewer to the trim first. Since the trim area is usually smaller than the body area of a home, this can help to even-out the strength of a darker color with a lighter color.


Color contrast is created when colors appearing next to each other vary in value, brightness or shade; sometimes all three. An example of a contrast in shade is a combination of red and green. A value example would be a light color vs. a dark color. A contrast in brightness would be a brighter color paired with a duller hue. When using contrast, keep in mind that high contrast brings more attention to the area of the home. A home exterior that's very detailed with high levels of contrast can look busy.


Scale refers to how the different elements of your home proportionately work together. Does one element of the house stand out more than others? Are the windows smaller or larger in comparison to the body area? Often, we see scale problems with large two-car garages set out in front of the house, or renovations where new windows have been added that don't match the scale of the rest of the home. While color can help to solve many issues, there are many it cannot resolve. If you need to minimize an element of your home, make it darker, but not so drastically dark that it stands out. If you want other elements to appear larger, use a lighter color.

Color for Emphasis

Color is one of the most effective tools for emphasizing specific elements of your home. This is accomplished by using contrast. Many homeowners want the viewer to be attracted to details like shutters, the front door or dormers. By painting these elements accent colors, they are the first things people notice when approaching your home. View our selection of siding colors. Frequently, elements such as vents, ducts and piping also use colors that contrast to the body of the home. In most cases, these elements are the most unattractive areas of your home and should not be called attention to.

Architectural Home Styles

Before you start thinking about specific exterior colors, you have to determine your objective. Do you want to align your design with colors that are traditionally associated with your home's architectural style? Or, do you want to deviate from those colors? In most cases, either solution is perfectly acceptable. However, there are many purists who believe that there should be limited deviation. Purists work to ensure that an area maintains a sense of harmony, both historically and in terms of design. This is a good thing! Purists are concerned that homes with "pink house syndrome" (i.e. homes that stand out) will lower house values, and in most cases they are right. There is a wide range of resources available to help find the color that's right for you.

© 2014 James Hardie Building Products Inc. All rights reserved.