Is An All-Black Exterior Right For Your Home in Temple?

We've all seen the ever-changing trends in home exterior color choices. Varying shades of gray, white, beige, greige, green, and blue have all had their moments. Now, it looks like all-black exteriors are entering the scene.  But is this bold color choice right for your home?

The color black can bring to mind sophistication, formality, and power.  It can symbolize mystery, secrets, and intrigue. Black can also represent sadness, death, and despair. Yikes! Not every home will be able to pull off the ebony elegance of an all-black exterior. Do not fall into despair! If you are thinking about diving into this inky hue for your home’s exterior, just take a few things into consideration first and see if this is the right choice for your home.  

If you've ever been caught outside wearing a black shirt on a hot summer day, you know that black loves the sun and soaks it ALL up! Deodorant barely stands a chance. Expect to break a sweat over your electric bill as well when your A/C must work overtime to keep your home cooler during the summer.  A home located in a cooler climate might be better suited to a soot-colored exterior. It might even lower your winter heating bills by drawing in more of the sun's rays during the day. The sun heating up the black paint can also increase the likelihood of paint fading or peeling more quickly. We recommend using good-quality paint to reduce the risk of premature fading. Behr Elastomeric Masonry, Stucco and Brick Paint, or Sherwin-Williams Duration Exterior are a couple of our favorites. 

Take stock of your exterior lighting. As mentioned above, black absorbs light; this includes your home's exterior lighting.  Provide your home with plenty of good porch lighting, and security lighting, and also maybe add some landscape lighting to keep things from getting scary dark. 

Speaking of landscaping, black pairs beautifully with green!  A well-landscaped lawn with plenty of green foliage will really pop in front of the drama of a black exterior. 

A home with lots of windows could also pull off the raven look well.  All the light and life peeking out from the black exterior will keep your family’s home from looking too much like a house of secrets.

Black Exterior Maintenance Tips

Dark colors are prone to show dirt and dust more.  Keep your home from looking like the spooky house on the block by keeping it well-maintained and cleaned. Don’t overdo the power washing though, just a gentle scrub with mild detergent and water and a quick rinse should do the trick. Repeated power washing too frequently can actually damage the exterior of your home over time. Check out this informative blog about power washing your exterior: How Often Should I Pressure Wash My House? | Five Star Painting

Consideration Factors for Black Exterior Paint

Just like the slimming effect of a little black dress, a black-painted exterior could make your home look smaller. Darker colors tend to recede while lighter colors stand out more.  A smaller home may seem to shrink back and appear even smaller, while a larger home may benefit from a darker color by looking more intimate. 

Is an onyx exterior a good fit with the surrounding houses in your neighborhood? In a suburban neighborhood full of similar-looking, single-family homes, your dark abode may look like a shadow in comparison. In a more modern urban area or an older neighborhood with a variety of architecturally interesting homes, a stylish coal-colored house may be the perfect fit. 

Another important question to ask yourself before getting out the paint roller: Is this your forever home? Unless the home's overall architecture carries it well and is a good fit for the neighborhood, an all-black exterior is a specific taste that isn’t for everyone. If you think you might be moving in the future, you’ll most likely need to repaint before you sell. Repainting over a dark color like black would require extensive priming, upping the cost of your repaint. 

How to Choose the Right Black Exterior Paint for Your Home

If you have carefully considered the above information and you feel that going all black is a good fit for your home exterior, there are many options out there.  Believe it or not, even black can have undertones to watch out for.  Choose a few options when you visit your local paint dealer and compare them.  You will see that some look green, blue, purple, brown, or red. Ask for the paint brand’s blackest-black and compare it to the other options. This will help you decide how dark you want to go and will also help you see the undertones of other black paints more clearly. 

A few options to consider:


  • Tricorn Black 6258 with an LRV (light reflective value) of 3, is one of the blackest blacks available.  It doesn’t show any undertones making it one of Sherwin-William's most popular black paint colors. 
  • Caviar 6990 also has an LRV of 3 but has a bit more warmth with a brown undertone.  This would pair nicely with a home that has stained wood trim or with brick or stone features. 

Benjamin Moore:

  • Black, 2132-10 is the darkest black in their product line with an LRV of 4. It is another classic black that does not reveal any noticeable undertones.
  • Space Black, 2119-10, is a bit softer than Benjamin Moore’s Black and may have a very slight barely noticeable blue undertone. 


  • Limousine Leather, PPU18-02, is Behr’s blackest black, like Tricorn Black and Benjamin Moore’s black, and doesn’t show undertones. 
  • Little Black Dress, PPU24-23, compared to Limousine Leather, LBD is a bit softer and could give off a very slight blue undertone. 

When testing paint colors, try to get actual paint chips or purchase sample pots, don’t make the final decision based on digital screen images. Look at the samples outside on the exterior at different times of day and over the course of 2-3 days before making a commitment. Varying lighting conditions and environments can draw out the hidden undertones or drastically change the look of the paint colors. Paint colors also typically appear 2-3 shades lighter than what it look like on the paint chip, especially on the exterior. 

Black can be a stylish and modern choice for your home’s exterior but do not charge into it too quickly. Repainting a home is expensive, so do your research and weigh all the pros and cons before making a commitment. A quick internet search can also show you several inspirational examples of homes that pull off the all-black look beautifully.