Are Accent Walls Risky?

The accent wall—a single wall that’s painted in a hue that contrasts with other walls in a room—is an ideal way to add a pop of color to a space in your flip without committing every wall to a particular pigment.

A majority of remodeling experts agree that the accent wall will be the most popular painting style inside of homes for sale this year, according to a recent poll by home improvement website Fixr. This painting method garnered 41 percent of the votes of experts, while other styles like two-tone walls, patterned walls, murals, and walls with faux painting techniques, divided the remainder of the vote. (None of the other styles reached the 30 percent mark).

As much as vibrant accent walls sound like a sure thing could they be a risky move in your flip? Yes, say some experts who believe that neutral walls remove one more hurdle between you and a sale. If the hues you choose for accent walls are a miss with buyers they may see it as more work for them should they purchase your property.

“The truth is a neutral base of walls, ceilings, and floors will make it much easier for the next buyer to move in,” said Portland-based interior designer and architect Justin Riordan to HomeLight (a real estate referral company). He suggests that pops of color play a less prominent role. “Keep the color regulated to art, linens, and accessories.”

This doesn’t mean you can’t have an accent wall, though. Instead of having a dramatic pop of pigment for an accent go for something much more understated. “We do use subtle punches of color to help our buyers discuss each room,” Riordan told HomeLight, “but there is a limit to the amount of color we should add to homes.”

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