Things to Consider When Choosing A Front Door For Your Home:
Almost no other part of your home gets as much exposure as the front door. It’s where you greet friends and family, serve (or scare) trick-or-treaters, and enjoy the songs of holiday carolers. A front door says a lot about who lives inside.
In fact, picking out a new front door can wind up being a high-value project for you to invest in, and picking the right front door can increase your home’s security, add value to your property’s curb appeal, and reduce your utility costs. That’s why we here at The Window Source of Des Moines made a list of a few things to keep in mind when choosing the right doors for your home.
Set A Budget
It doesn’t matter if all you’re doing is purchasing one new front door, replacing that door should still be considered a home improvement project, and for every project you do, you need to determine the amount you’re comfortable spending, and then stick to it. This number should come after careful consideration of costs and benefits of purchasing a new door, in particular:
Long-term benefits, like home value
Life of the door
Energy efficiency & weather protection
Included features, like windows & mail slots
Additional costs like staining or painting required
Your front door should fit in architecturally with the rest of your home. But you can take the opportunity to let this element say something about you, as well. Are you the traditional type? Maybe the classic six-panel door is right for you. More whimsical? Perhaps an arched door with stained glass. There is something out there for everyone, so feel free to express yourself.
A standard single door is generally 32″-36″ wide. Is your entryway standard? Or will it require something bigger, like a 42″ extra-wide single door? Beyond that are double doors. Also, an entryway may encompass more than just the actual door, but remember that ornamental elements (e.g., sidelites or a glazed transom) require proper framing for support.
While the look of your door is important for curb appeal, just as important is choosing a door that is durable, performs well in weather, and is energy efficient. Here are some of the most common materials used for entry doors:
Wood – A classic choice, authentic wood will give your door unique grain patterns and color. Within wood, there are many options for type, panel style, historic accents, and other embellishments as well.
Steel – Typically the more affordable choice, steel is extra durable and won’t warp, crack, or dent. Most steel doors offer a smooth surface and are limited in panel design and color options. Steel doors can, however, include insulated cores, which can make them energy efficient.
Fiberglass – Offering the broadest variety of styles, fiberglass can feature the realistic look of stained wood, or the smooth panel surface of a painted door. This material is typically energy-efficient, making them durable and easy to maintain. Because of the large selection of options to choose from, fiberglass doors are offered at varying price points.
Many doors also contain decorative additions, such as glass embellishments. These, too, will affect the initial price and long-term cost of your door, but the immediate increase in property value may negate this, too.
Like most investments in your home, when you purchase a front door, there’s an up-front cost and the long-term cost. Make sure you are well aware of the energy efficiency, maintenance requirements, and life expectancy of the door you are selecting. All those things impact the long-term cost of maintaining your entryway.