Real estate experts reveal the surprising color that will add value to a small bathroom

Forget about white – it's all about adding color to a small bathroom if you want to add value to your home

Free standing bathtub in blue painted bathroom
(Image credit: Future / Emma Lee)

It might come as a shock but the color that adds value to a small bathroom...is definitely not white. Although decorating a bathroom using neutral colors is often cited as a failsafe tip when selling a home, real estate experts with experience disagree. In fact, white bathrooms are so out of date now that they will reduce the value of your home at resale. 

Where it comes to small bathroom ideas in particular, color is of vital importance. What's even more remarkable is the fact that all of the real estate experts we've consulted are in unison about the exact color that will add value to a small bathroom or bijou powder room. 

The color that adds value to small bathrooms

Chelsea townhouse designed by Gunter & Co

(Image credit: Mary Wadsworth)

The color in question is light blue. We've seen the popularity of blue soar across almost every room in the house, with blue kitchen ideas especially popular over the past year as homeowners are generally moving away from bland and towards color. 

In a small bathroom, choosing the right shade of blue is crucial to making the right impression on potential home buyers. The real estate professional consensus is that light, pastel, and powdery shades of blue are sought after, while an overly dark blue shade can be a put-off. 

ChuckVander Stelt a real estate agent the founder of the real estate website Quadwalls.com, says that 'Light blue is always a winner for powder rooms. Light blue is subtle, crisp, and clean. Also important is the versatility of blue. Blue easily matches with many other colors commonly found in bathrooms.'

Marais Aqua Ceramic Tiles, Porcelain Superstore

(Image credit: Porcelain Superstore)

A small bathroom can feel cramped, and a light shade of blue visually enhances its size, which is always appreciated by buyers.'

'Because blue adds dimension and depth to your home, painting your powder room a shade of blue creates a very spacious look,' says Matt Bigach, a real estate expert & Co-founder at Nexus HomeBuyers. 'Such colors add brightness and light to your house, making it very enticing to buyers and increasing the value of your home.'

The other reason pale or light blue is so appreciated is because it instantly creates an atmosphere of spa-like calm. Johell Aponte, owner of Houston-based MoveOnHouseBuyers.com, explains that 'light blue has to be the best color that adds value to your powder room. The reason for this is that light and soft blue is soothing to the eyes and creates a calm and peaceful environment in a small bathroom.'

Bathroom tile idea with half blue tiled wall


(Image credit: Matthew Williams)

Introducing light blue by painting a wall or a vanity is the easiest way to try out this color, although you'll achieve the most beautiful effects by incorporating light, shimmering shades into your bathroom tile ideas. Tiling a bathroom will cost more, but the payoff from a beautifully finished light blue bathroom is substantial. 

Eric Nerhood, of Premier Property Buyers, gives some hard figures: 'A blue or periwinkle bathroom can increase the price up to $5,400.' Leave your bathroom white or off-white – and lose $4,000. The choice is a no-brainer, we think.

Anna Cottrell
Anna Cottrell

Anna is Consumer Editor across Future home titles; she has a background in academic research and is the author of London Writing of the 1930s; she has written about literature, architecture, and photography, and has a special interest in high-end interior design.