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Friendly Front Entries

Are visitors in the dark or exposed to the elements at your front door? Make your entryway more welcoming with these ideas.

+ enlarge image Your front entry should be enticing.
  • If you have a roofed entryway outside your front door, add an outdoor ceiling fixture or a pair of coach lanterns. Even a partially enclosed area will make the most of low-wattage outdoor lighting and help deter intruders. Use that extra brightness to make your house numbers more visible by placing them inside the entry area.
  • Build in seating or a simple bench along one side, if you have the space. It'll give you a place to chat with neighbors or deal with door-to-door solicitors without letting them past the front door.
  • Does your entry already have a built-in mail slot? If not, add one in the wall next to the front door so that mail won't pile up outside when you're away for several days.
  • The door handle is the first thing many visitors will touch, so invest in a high-quality lockset that will give a subtle-but-solid first impression to guests when you invite them to come inside.
  • A more extensive, expensive upgrade will broaden the profile of your entry and invite the sun's sparkle into your foyer: Frame the front door with sidelights and a transom window.
  • If you want to add a front entry, but a broad canopy or porch is not appropriate or practical, bump in instead of out by recessing the door several inches or framing it with deep boxing. You not only gain some cover, but also give your entry more visual oomph.