Color specialist Pantone notes in “The Psychology of Color” that workers at a paint company complained that an office painted blue was too cold. The company repainted the office a warm peach, and the sweaters came off – even though the thermostat on the wall didn’t budge.
Today’s palette of popular interior color choices generally follows expressive fashion and design trends with a little splash on the Millennial demographic. Neutrals to spirited, “happy” colors are covering walls to reflect a forward moving generation that is all about a new direction.
Many factors influence color trends. Millennials are a large demographic who have inspired the latest trends. One of their top choices is the sophisticated color grey.
Grays and taupes make units look elegant and upscale without clashing with residents' furnishings. The neutrals allow them to personalize their space and make it feel like their own.
In spaces to relax and socialize, it's better to use bold and saturated shades. It doesn't have to be the whole wall, but possibly just highlighting a column or smaller feature area. Try a neutral wall color used in combination with another neutral from that same color family but slightly darker in value. You still have two neutral wall color selections, but it’s a tonal color combination. This gives more life and sophistication than plain white walls.
Like with other styles and trends, economic conditions can play a large factor on what gets splashed on walls. In today’s improving economy, brighter and bolder tints are more popular.
In 2008, the Rohm and Haas Paint Quality Institute (PQI) endorsed drab and dark colors like greens, blacks and browns mixed with whites, silvers and reds. PQI said the colors represented environmental responsibility and a nurturing, caring environment. A year later as America transformed, PQI chose a palette of bronze metallic, dusty purple, deep blue and rosy pink that took a “cue from the continually changing skies” and provided “the homeowner with colors represented at sunrise or sunset”.
Today, with the economy chugging on most cylinders and people sleeping easier at night, PQI’s colors of choice are more neutral and symbolic of a tranquil, serene and relaxing experience. Colors like white, off-white, beige, taupe, soft blue, or black are trendy for areas where residents seek refuge and comfort, like bedrooms and family rooms.
Certainly economic conditions play a role in influencing color trends, as well as the environment, fashion, and design trends. Right now, people are more optimistic and things are looking up. Paint your rental property walls to reflect that optimism! Your tenants will thank you for it.