Learn what your front door says about you and how you can style and choose the right front door for your home.
The front door of your home says a lot about who lives inside. But selecting an entry door that fits your home’s style, adds value to your home, and is aesthetically beautiful can be an overwhelming process. Because a front door has the ability to add (or subtract) to our home’s curb appeal as well as safety, replacing it is consistently rated a high-value project for homeowners to invest in.
According to Remodeling Magazine, replacing your front entry door is a worthwhile project as the value exceeds the actual cost. When it comes to finding a front door that is in your budget and exceeds your expectations, you have many choices – including colors, materials, design and safety.
Like all home improvement projects, replacing your front door is considered an investment and your budget should reflect careful planning and decision making. There are a few things to look at when determining the costs of your door:
- Upfront costs vs. long-term benefits
- Estimated useful life
- Maintenance requirements
- Energy efficiency
- Weather protection and performance
- Features included
- Pre-finishing costs or additional staining or painting required
- Hardware and accessories
- Remodeling additional entry features like stairs, lighting or doorbell
Before choosing the style door, a good next step is to choose the material. I make this recommendation because not all door styles are available in all materials, unless of course you opt for a custom door. Choosing a stock door can keep costs down and there are a lot of options from a variety of manufacturers in different stores so there is a high probability that you will find one you like. Consider also matching the material of your front door to the garage doors, especially if the garage doors are visible from the front of your home.
Wood vs. Fiberglass
Generally speaking I prefer using actual materials vs a manufactured replica but when it comes to the outside of your home going maintenance free is a big benefit. When making your decision, take into account your climate and specific location. If your home is close to the sea or situated on a particularly wooded lot, the exterior of your home is subject to additional wear and tear and the fiberglass door would be a good choice. Note that fiberglass does not mean your door has to be painted but you can get a wood like door as well.
Solid vs. Veneer
Composite doors consist of a veneer over an engineered core and are a less expensive option than solid wood. If your front door experiences a high volume of traffic, for instance children that go in and out with sports equipment, this may not be the best solution as veneer doors can damage far easier than a solid wood or composite.
Painted vs. Stained
Wood doors come in a variety of grains. Choose oak, cherry, walnut, mahogany, pine and more. In addition to grain, each variety of also has a base color which you should consider in conjunction with the stain color you choose. If the manufacturer gives you the option to get your door pre stained, go for it. Its not an easy task to stain your front door perfectly and this is definitely a place in your home that you want looking its best.