The 3 Best Colors to Paint Your Kitchen, According to Real Estate Pros

published Jan 21, 2022
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Credit: Bev Wilson

When you’re not physically in your kitchen, there’s a good chance it’s still in view. The ubiquity of open floor plans has given many people a seamless transition from the cooking space to the living space. And even if that’s not the case for you (galley kitchen cooks, unite!), your kitchen likely plays a huge role in your day to day.

For those reasons and more, kitchens are a big factor when it comes to a home’s resale value, and a well-designed kitchen can help your home stand out to prospective buyers when it comes time to sell. In particular, a minor kitchen remodel — which includes repainting your walls, trims, and ceiling — tends to translate into better return on investment compared to a major, more costly kitchen remodel, according to Remodeling’s annual Cost vs. Value Report.

David Bluhm is the cofounder and president of Plunk, an app that aims to help homeowners grow their home equity, as well an alum of When it comes to any aspect of painting your kitchen, Bluhm recommends sticking with colors that will resonate with a wide array of buyers. 

“Color, while it can bring fun and visual interest, also introduces risk. Some buyers like calm, soothing colors, like blue, while others prefer colors that are more vibrant and energetic. Unfortunately, they all risk turning a buyer off.” He adds, “If your goal is bigger, brighter, and cleaner, stay light.”

Here are the three most resale-friendly colors you should consider painting your kitchen, according to real estate professionals.

Credit: Lula Poggi

Greige is crisp, clean, and complex.

Because it contains varying influences of beige and gray, greige is a nuanced and versatile take on a neutral color. It’s the perfect choice to lend the illusion of spaciousness to a small kitchen — or a sense of homeyness to a large kitchen.

“Greige seems to come in as many hues and shades as paint itself. It offers some warmth when it trends more towards beige, or it can be very cooling depending on the undertones,” Bluhm says. “Greige goes with any decor, can complement any color, and delivers a timeless look. A new buyer can easily imagine their pots, pans, and decorations all working well in their new greige-colored kitchen.”

Credit: Minette Hand

All-white signifies a blank slate.

White in the kitchen can really energize the room, suggesting freshness and cleanliness. “I love an all-white kitchen. White is timeless, always in style, and works well in any size or style kitchen,” says real estate broker Danielle Desjardins. And in terms of resale, a white kitchen is ideal because it’s essentially a blank slate waiting to be personalized by future homeowners.

“My go to kitchen paint color is Farrow & Ball Strong White No. 2001,” Desjardins says. “It’s a cool white with a gray undertone made from a clay base. And it’s eco-friendly.”

Light green adds a hint of color.

Martin Orefice is a real estate agent and the founder of Rent To Own Labs. While he agrees that muted neutrals are a pragmatic choice for the kitchen because they create a sense of space, he also vouches for lighter shades of green.

“In the wake of the pandemic, people have gained increased affinity towards nature and greenery. As a result, they want to bring elements of greenery into their spaces,” says Orefice. “Green induces a sense of calmness and adds a soothing vibe to the kitchen.”

Neutrals are best for the cabinets and ceiling.

When it comes to other surfaces in the kitchen, such as cabinetry and ceilings, Bluhm says homeowners can’t go wrong with neutrals. “Consider painting your upper cabinets white and your lower cabinets greige. This will deliver a more sophisticated look while also lending some color, warmth, and texture to the room,” he says. “And white ceilings make rooms look bigger while also reflecting light to keep things bright.”

This post originally ran on Apartment Therapy. See it there: The 3 Best Colors to Paint a Kitchen, According to Real Estate Pros