7 simple tips to update your front door

New paint or new hardware can help update your front door, giving your home instant curb appeal. (Photo courtesy of Angie’s List member Heather G. of Chicago)

New paint or new hardware can help update your front door, giving your home instant curb appeal. (Photo courtesy of Angie’s List member Heather G. of Chicago)

Upgrading your front door is one of the simplest and cost-effective ways to improve your home's curb appeal. Here are seven easy ways to open the door to a fresh look:

Try a new coat of paint

If every door on your block is beige or gray, a simple coat of paint on the front door can make your home stand out. A quart of exterior paint costs less than $20 and comes in a wide variety of colors and weather-resistant options. Newer, latex-based products roll or brush on like traditional paint, but dry like a wood stain, providing superior weather protection and defense against peeling.

Replace old hardware

Hardware can be anything from door handles to mail slots, kick plates or house numbers above the entryway. If your hardware is outdated, rusty or doesn't match the overall aesthetic of your home, it may be time for a change. Most hardware can be purchased for less than $20 and installed in the space of a few hours. Projects like peepholes and mail slots require making holes in your door, however, and if you're considering a new door handle, make sure the size is consistent with whatever you already have in place

Dress it up

There are several easy ways to "dress up" an entry door without substantial cost. One is to replace trim around the door with decorative moldings; in addition to wood, these are also available in PVC trim that look identical to their wooden counterparts.

Make it welcoming

A doormat can improve the look of your door at a low cost. Options include vulcanized rubber, coated foam, cast iron and twisted coir fibers. Depending on your preference, these mats can be mostly decorative or can be a practical way for people to remove dirt and grime before coming inside. Many will do both beautifully.

Add symmetry

You can also add to the appeal of a front entry door by improving its surroundings. Matching flowerpots, light stands or even siding-mounted lights can improve your entrance's appearance. It's possible to spend a lot or a little on this kind of project — simple metal or ceramic planters can be had for less than $20, while vintage lighting may cost upward of $150.

Keep it clean

Even the best-looking doors don't impress if they aren't clean. Rain, mud, snow, dust and spider webs all diminish your home's curb appeal. A good sweeping of the entryway area, followed by a simple scrubbing with soap and water, can bring a dreary entry back to life and draw all eyes to your door.

Replace the door

Sometimes, replacement is the best answer. The options for a new door are almost endless: old hollow-core doors can be replaced with solid wood, metal or fiberglass, or you can add etched glass for an emphatic visual statement. These doors range from $100 for a standard model to $1,000 or more for those with metal or glass inserts.

If you choose to install a new door, consider hiring a professional. This guarantees no accidental mistakes with measurement and ensures that any locking devices work as they should. Consider also how Angie's List can help. Members have access to local consumer reviews on door companies, handymen and service providers in more than 550 other categories


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5 ways hardware can update your front door

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Whether a shiny, new door knocker or a vintage mail slot, new hardware can help update your front door and add to your home’s curb appeal. (Photo courtesy of Angie’s List member Elizabeth B. of Waban, Mass.)
Whether a shiny, new door knocker or a vintage mail slot, new hardware can help update your front door and add to your home’s curb appeal. (Photo courtesy of Angie’s List member Elizabeth B. of Waban, Mass.)

Updating your exterior door hardware can help update the look of your home for minimal cost. From handles and knockers to mail slots and kick plates, a wide variety of options are available.

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