Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Those First Impressions Really Do Matter; in the Latest in a His Series, Architect Neil Turner Shares His Thoughts on Front Doors and What They Say about a Property

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Those First Impressions Really Do Matter; in the Latest in a His Series, Architect Neil Turner Shares His Thoughts on Front Doors and What They Say about a Property

Article excerpt

A FRONT door can give a visitor a real clue as to the character and style of both a house and the owner of a property.

Whether it's an historic sixpanelled Georgian, four-panelled Victorian, a 1960s frosted glass or an overlarge pivot door, they can all tell us something about the condition and give an impression of the house we are about to enter.

So why are they important? Well, in the same way we decide about a person within the first 30 seconds of meeting based on the clothes or shoes they are wearing, rightly, or wrongly, the same can be said of a house.

For example, if you approach a house and the door has peeling paint it shouts: "Look at me - I'm not looked after!" It could also indicate that the rest of the property is treated in the same manner. Of course, this impression could be entirely wrong, but first impressions are, literally, just that.

Whether you are selling or not, I believe it's important to make sure that the front door looks good. How we do that, I hear you say? Today the options are enormous. An historic street of terraced properties will probably benefit from a beautifully painted door with some glass inserted to allow light into the hallway. Leaded light if you are lucky.

However, when it comes to houses from the post war period it becomes trickier, because each decade is reflected by different door styles and fashions.

Through the 50s and 60s, doors often had lots of glass and little security. During the 70s, mahoganystained timber doors were all the rage while the 80s saw the use of alternative materials such as UPVC and aluminium with brighter gloss colours - not always very tasteful - become popular.

Now the choice is wider than ever with metals such as zinc and copper quite readily available and UPVC imitating older Georgian styles, often not very successfully, as well as both traditional and contemporary doors made from wood.

So how do you go about choosing the right front door? …

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