Most homeowners consider the lifespan of things like roofs, floors, windows, etc. But often people forget about their front door. Like other important home features, doors are really multi-taskers. Not only do they enhance the overall curb appeal, but they can bring down utility costs by increasing efficiency. Newer doors also help block outside noise and provide improved security. So, is it time for a new front door? Here are some of the signs you might want to start shopping…
Gaps, cracks and drafts
Do you notice your home cooling down significantly at night? If so, be sure to check around your front door for drafts. It’s possible that cracks in the door or around where it’s sealed are letting in both air and bugs. Another test: can you see light through the top, bottom or sides of the door? Time for a new one if you can.
Scrapes and squeaky hinges
Check to see if your door scrapes the floor when opening or closing. If the hinges continue to squeak despite oiling, then they are most likely wearing out.
Style, material, and noise
A new front door is an easy way to drastically change the look of a home. Replacing an older, out-of-date door with a more modern one can instantly update the entire home. This not only adds to the character and charm while you live there, but the costs are almost completely recouped when selling. Newer doors are also made of stronger materials to curb outside noise and increase homeowner security against intruders.
If you’ve decided it’s time for a new front door, now what? Now it’s time to research the kind of material and style you want, as well as set your budget. They come in a multitude of choices and homeowners should consider light, security, and long term benefits. Doors can cost upwards of $4,000 for a new front door with sidelights. However, the price for just the wood-door can start at about $400. With such a wide range in prices, it’s best to read up on the various options (here’s a great start) and talk with a professional before making your final purchase.
**Bonus** – If you install a new front door now through December 31st, you may qualify for up to $500 in tax credits if replacing with an energy efficient one. Be sure to check Energy Star for details and applications to receive this credit.