The entrance to your home, whether you call it a foyer, a vestibule, an entry way, or a front hall, serves as a reception area to your home. A remodel here can make a dramatic difference in how you and visitors see the interior of your home and how they feel entering your living space. But is this a remodel you can do yourself, or is it something you should leave to a professional? Fortunately, hiring a pro for this specific work is not too costly in most cases, and there are some fun and easy ways to customize your entryway on your own.
Pros and cons for doing it yourself
The entryway to your home can be a great place to add your personal touch. It is also a space that requires organization, so this remodel offers many opportunities for DIY projects that add design and functionality while better utilizing space. If you have basic construction skills, jobs like hanging the front entry door and mounting pictures are doable without hired help, although be wary of making mistakes that may cost more to fix in the long run.
Many people benefit from professional help for the remodel of their entry way. Unless you have construction experience, entry way remodels require various small pieces and materials to give it a finished look. The entry way represents the first impression both for you and your guests as they enter the interior of your home. You want your completed entry way to look seamless and professional, and for everything to be properly installed. To ensure little mistakes don’t turn into costly ones in the future, it is best to hire a professional for major entry way installations. For a grand entry way remodel that may entail new stone flooring, new lighting, molding, new doors or other details, a professional will have the right tools and skills to complete the job and may receive materials at a discounted price. The downside to hiring a professional for most homeowners is the cost. However, you can offset this cost by taking a mixed approach, hiring a professional for less expensive tasks like hanging the entry door, and designing and decorating the rest of the entry way yourself.
Front entry way projects that should be done by a pro
Front door installation
For a relatively small fee you can hire a professional to come out and install your front door. This way you know it is hung level and properly the first time. Very often front doors arrive unfinished. You may want to hire a professional painter to correctly stain, seal or paint your front door. You can order the door yourself or have your professional order it for you; they may receive a better pricing.
Hanging chandeliers and light fixtures
Do you have a statement lighting fixture to add to your entry way? Given the height and electrical wiring needed to install this, it’s best to leave this task to the pros. Purchasing the fixture is something the homeowner should do, but very often it requires a tall ladder and several hands to install.
Will an over-door archway or custom molding finish off your entry way? Hire a contractor to install this, for they have the right tools, materials and resources to give your entry way a professional finishing touch. Cutting the molding pieces and getting exact fits can be tricky, especially if you’ve never attempted it before. If you have a complicated design in mind, discuss your plans with a pro before you purchase materials.
Whether your entry flooring extends into the rest of the main floor, or if the flooring is specific to the entry way, you may want a pro to complete this task. A pro will be able to tear up old flooring or lay new flooring down and has experience with grading and matching the levels of various flooring materials. Ensuring that the flooring works with the function of the front door will also require experience.
Front entryway projects to DIY
Cabinets, hooks, benches
While front entrances make the first impression to your home, they are also prone to be a dumping zone for shoes, jackets, backpacks, and purses. Adding custom storage can prevent clutter in this area. Building a custom coat rack, or adding unique hooks, built in cabinets, or benches is a great way to utilize this space while adding some color and character. Work with your space and combine different fabrics, colors, or materials to make this space stand out.
An entryway is a great place to add an eye-catching mirror, picture, photograph, or even wall color. Utilize this small and engaging space by adding something that makes it stand out from from the rest of the home.
Many people like to paint their entry way to give it a special character. This is a fun and simple DIY that will add a pop of color to your home’s interior. Be sure to select a paint that will work in this high-traffic area and coordinates with elements of the exterior. To whatever extent you choose to hire professionals to transform your entry way or take the job on yourself, it can be very rewarding in the end if you can say that you invested your time and attention in the details of your project.
Top image credit: Miller Design Co.