Emma Hernan says you 'can't go wrong' with this exterior paint color – and it can help you sell your house

The Selling Sunset broker recommends this classic shade for painting our home's exterior, including the front door

emma hernana in a blue suit on a porch
(Image credit: Jason Kent)

You only get one chance to make a first impression when selling your house. The moment when people drive up to the home and look at the exterior paint is a huge one.

Luckily, we interviewed luxury realtor Emma Hernan and got her top tips on the best paint colors for selling a house, starting with the first area that people see. 'Designing with white is always right,' she says. 'I also like to lean in towards those earthy tones and embrace more of a modern organic vibe.' While white comes out on top as the best paint color, there is room for flexibility.'

If this alone feels boring, Emma is also a huge advocate of adding exterior cladding for a bit of visual interest. She states: 'You can always incorporate some wood. So, say you have a beautiful white house. You could also add, for example, a wooden pane on the garage.'

Emma Hernan

(Image credit: Jason Kent)

'A girlfriend of mine, who I happen to film with, Chrishell, added some wood to the front of her house, which honestly took her house to the next level. So I recommend that to a lot of my clients too if they want to add some dimension to their house.' According to experts, this is a great way to make the exterior of your house look expensive.

Front door of traditional house painted red

(Image credit: Farrow & Ball x Collagerie)

As for front doors, Emma recommends going, 'pretty neutral all the way around.' However, there is more room to play around here. Emma told H&G, 'For the inside, for the kitchen, and for the exterior,  I would say advise lighter neutrals, but for outside, if you were going to paint your door, I actually wouldn't be mad at a little bit of a pop with like a darker gray or a darker olive. You can have a nice neutral pop, but you can also have it a little bit darker.'

However, though she likes a pop, Emma says bright shades are front door colors to avoid. She says, 'I definitely don't think you don't want a bright yellow door or a bright pink door.' She continues, 'Although I do love a Barbie moment. I don't think you want that for your forever home.'

How would Emma paint the exterior of her own home? She tells H&G, 'I'm actually thinking about doing a remodel right now on my home. I'm considering doing white with black windows, you know, that look just adds a little pop and a little dimension.'

Emma Hernan
Emma Hernan

Selling Sunset star Emma Hernan is the go-to agent for many luxury home buyers and sellers, both across the US and internationally. Alongside her place in the real estate industry, Emma has a rich background as an entrepreneur and angel investor – simultaneously serving as the CEO of her successful food company. 

Supermoon Exterior Paint | from $3 for a sample at Backdrop

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Backdrop's purest, cleanest white is the perfect shade to add dimension and interest to your home. We love this formula because it applies easily and washes seamlessly – meaning it will impress for longer.

As Emma demonstrates, the world in black and white doesn't need to be boring. Neutral colors can instead form a timeless base around which to make the rest of your interior and exterior design decisions.

Sophie Edwards
News Editor

I am a London-based News Editor at Homes & Gardens. My interests lie at the intersection of design and popular culture with a particular focus on trends and celebrity homes. Before joining Future, I worked as a Content Writer and Communications Lead for Fig Linens and Home, a luxury linens and home interiors brand based in Fairfield County, CT. I have a BA in Creative Writing from Sarah Lawrence College in New York and an MSc from the Oxford University Department of Anthropology.