When it comes to installing a new roof, choosing the color is one of the most difficult tasks for many homeowners. Choosing the right color for your home is very subjective, but it’s important to get it right since you’ll be living with it for the next 20 years. Be sure to consider these tips when choosing the color of your roof.

Match Your Bricks First

When comparing paint colors, always be sure they are a good match to the brick siding, chimney, and other similar areas of your home. You can always change the shutters and exterior paint color, but your bricks are permanent. Blacks and browns often work with brick homes, or you can choose a custom color that complements the color of your bricks.

Home Style

Different colors lend themselves to different styles of houses. Older, traditional houses are better suited with neutral, natural colors, while bolder or more colorful paint choices work well with more modern styles. Rich colors also emphasize the house and can make a smaller home appear larger.

Dark vs. Light Colors

Although roofs are traditionally darker than the rest of the house–except with very dark-colored houses–there are some times when this may not be the the best idea. In warm climates, light-colored roofs can help reflect light, lowering the temperature inside your home by as much as 5-10 degrees. This keeps your home more comfortable, while also saving money on your energy bills. On the other hand, homes in colder climates do better with darker, more traditional roofs, which absorb sunlight during the winter to keep the building as warm as possible.

Know Your Neighborhood

Take a drive around your neighborhood before you make your final decision. Some homeowners choose roof colors and styles that will blend in to the neighborhood, while others prefer to stand out.

You can also see what others have done with the same style of house. Odds are good that many of your neighbors will even have the same exterior color as you, so you can see which color combinations you like.

Add Dimension

If your home is a dull or neutral color, adding a boldly colored roof can add dimension and texture to your home’s exterior. Or if your home is already busy or has a detailed exterior, a more muted color will keep your property from becoming an eyesore.

Take Home Samples

Ask your roof installers for sample shingles so you can take them home and see how they look on your home in person. Compare them to your exterior brick and paint colors to make sure they’re a good match. Be sure to view the shingles throughout the day so you can see them in all different types of light.

Consider Resale Value

If you think you might be selling your home in the next 20 years, err on the side of caution and choose a relatively neutral color that blends in naturally with your home and neighborhood. Bright, bold colors may appeal to you, but they will almost certainly make your home harder to sell. Ask your roof installers what the most popular colors of shingles are in your area.