Custom Roof Colors for the West Selecting Roofing Colors with Confidence Add to the Home Value by Marcus Dodson, editor

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1 Custom Roof Colors for the West Selecting Roofing Colors with Confidence Add to the Home Value by Marcus Dodson, editor Over the years, as roofing color options become more prevalent, roofers have found that homeowners are oftentimes paralyzed with the fear of making the wrong choice of a color for a replacement roof. Still other homeowners embrace the color opportunities set before them. Roofing color selections can be challenging for two major reasons: the roof is such a big financial investment and it has a strong visual impact on the home, says Kate Smith, chief color maven and owner of Sensational Color. Color selection for a roofing product can be influenced by the style of the structure, the geographic setting, or a homeowner s personal style. While Smith points out that it s not essential to have a color expert involved in a roofing color choice, some homeowners benefit from the guidance and reassurance that a professional color expert consultation offers. The exterior of a home begins to tell a story about its owners that continues on the inside, says Smith. For many homeowners, the challenge comes down to being able to express their style confidently and still have the house feel at home in the neighborhood. The good news is that polymer roofing color blends can especially work well for a wide variety of homes and people. Whether created from two or five different color palettes, a blend of colors on the roof provides freedom for people to pull out different colors on other areas of the home or structure, such as siding, shutters and trim work. Smith explains that choosing a color blend for a roof may seem counterintuitive to the color shy person, but it actually provides the homeowner with more flexibility. Blends of colors, whether earth tones or bolder terracotta colors, can more easily create a harmonious exterior for a 2011 Dodson Publications, Inc. Page 1 of 5 September 16, :33 AM

2 home than a single-color roof can accomplish, says Smith. The key is choosing a blend with similar colors, like DaVinci s Harbor Gray blend. This includes light, medium light, medium, and dark tones of Chesapeake to create a warm, inviting feeling. The similar colors create a visual blend rather than seeing all of the contrasting colors. Personalized Roof Color One West Coast homeowner who embraced the challenge of adding color to his new roof is Dan Baer of Yorba Linda, Calif. In 2008 the Baer family watched from their back porch as raging wildfire flames came within a half mile of their home. That was too close for comfort for Baer, who was concerned about the old wooden shake shingles on their roof at the time. More than 50 homes burned in our area during that one fire, says Baer. If the winds had been stronger, our home would have been included. That old shake roof was a tinderbox waiting to ignite. That fire was a wake-up call. I investigated the type of new roof we wanted on our home and the color options available. We selected DaVinci s Bellaforté polymer tiles with a Class A rating for fire retardance, which gives our family tremendous peace of mind. When it came time to select the color for his new roof, Baer went off the grid and stepped away from the company s wide variety of standard color offerings. I used the DaVinci Color Design Studio to select colors to complement our overall home, says Baer. Our custom roof blend is a mix of light brown, medium brown, medium tan, and dark amber. The company used its VariBlend(TM) technology to create a continuous variation from tile to tile, which resulted in a beautiful, natural blend. Since we have an extended balcony, we threw a roof party to celebrate our new roof after it was installed. However, the real celebration is that we now feel safer in our home and have the added confidence that this roof will require almost no maintenance hassles for the 2011 Dodson Publications, Inc. Page 2 of 5 September 16, :33 AM

3 next five decades. This was an investment I was happy to make because the benefits are so great. Color Guidance for Roofers Just as a person may see themselves as having a cool blue personality that is calm, confident and in control, a home exterior also has a color personality, says Smith, a professional member and chair holder of the Color Marketing Group. A cool home may feature blues, greens, and purples as the primary colors in the siding, entryway, and roofing. On the flip side, a warm home exterior would have more focus on neutral colors plus hues in yellow, orange, and red. Smith recommends roofers try to match up the homeowner s personality with the roof colors used on the house in order to create a cohesive living environment. Start at the top of the house with a blend of colors in the roofing tiles to set the overall tone for the home, says Smith. If your customer is an outgoing individual who gets all they can out of life, holds a position that requires some form of leadership and doesn t tremble at the idea of public speaking, then they most likely have a warm personality, says Smith. These people gravitate to the colors of tomato red, terra cotta, burgundy, or olive. However, if your client appears to be a trusted friend, volunteers in the community, leads by example and is a natural peacemaker, then you re most likely dealing with a person that gravitates to a cooler color like navy, aqua, or forest green. The key to satisfying your customer with a color selection is getting to know the homeowners and offering them colorful advice. What s My Color? 2011 Dodson Publications, Inc. Page 3 of 5 September 16, :33 AM

4 When it comes to practical color advice for the roof, Smith offers these guidelines that roofers can use when meeting with prospective customers: Green roofs look best with homes that have natural wood siding, or are painted gray, white, or a green color lighter than the roof itself. Avoid red or colors that are very warm for the siding, although these bright colors could be used as an accent, such as for a front door. Brown roofs complement houses painted in tan, yellow, cream, offwhite, or a different shade of brown. Brick homes that have a yellow or brownish colorcast to the bricks can also look good with a brown roof. Stay away from using a brown roof if you have a home with cool colors on the main body, such as blues and grays. Black roofs provide an anchor for tall homes by helping visually lower the roof and making the home look wider in contrast to the siding color and trim. A black roof has a strong link to homes painted in gray, blue, green or white, and can also be used with a brick exterior. Try to avoid a black roof if your client has a single-story or smaller home, because the black can seem too weighty for a smaller structure. Gray roofs are an ideal complement to more traditional-style homes and can also be used on blue, green, black, or white house colors. Bolder accent colors for trim, shutters, or the entryway door can broaden the visual appeal of the home with a gray roof. Terracotta color roofs work exceptionally well with stucco and brick homes, along with stone and those houses with a mixture of exterior materials. White is classic color to use with a terracotta roof. The high contrast between the body and roof colors looks crisp and clean together, and is often a choice for warmer climates. Red roofs match up beautifully to accent gray or warm brown house colors. Consider a red roof for a white or cream exterior to create a country look for a home Dodson Publications, Inc. Page 4 of 5 September 16, :33 AM

5 Depending on the style of a home, as much as 40% or more of the visual you get when looking at a house is the roof, says Smith. The more roof that is shown, the more important it is to allow the roof color to help define the home s style. Colors and Commercial Projects In Durango, Colo., officials at Animas Museum have been working to restore the 1880 s Peterson House. With curling, rotted wooden shake shingles, the roof of the local landmark needed help. To preserve the natural look of the structure, DaVinci s Fancy Shake polymer roofing tiles were selected in a Mountain blend of color. The light, medium, and dark mountain shades combine so the new roof blends in perfectly in the historical setting. Oftentimes, a roof color selection is not about standing out but about fitting in with an existing community, says Smith. This museum project is an ideal example of how 21st century man-made products can enhance the restoration of a 19th century building. Another West Coast structure boasting a new and colorful roof this year is the 1920 s church at Self-Realization Fellowship in Los Angeles, Calif. The worldwide non-profit spiritual organization devoted to yoga and meditation recently had a custom-colored blue shake roof installed on its main facility. Inspiration for this unique blue color came from the historical nature of the facility along with the calmness associated with the color blue, says Smith. There s definitely a color for every person and every project. The challenge is identifying that color and then reflecting it on the exterior of the building Dodson Publications, Inc. Page 5 of 5 September 16, :33 AM

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