A Front Door: Your First Impression

The importance of a first impression is often talked about in numerous popular sayings and phrases. It’s the same case when it comes to houses. The first impression of any house, after all, is the front door. It’s not the architecture or the different design choices you might have made with the windows or walls. It’s simply the front door that drives the very first impression of your home.

Period front door

This fact has become more popular amongst London homeowners of late. They are paying far more attention to their front doors and have been focusing on top quality Victorian and Georgian designs. Nowadays, designing a Victorian or Georgian home involves a lot of attention towards the front door since the owners wish to make a first impression that engages and lasts.

The importance of your Front door

The importance of your front door cannot be mentioned enough. In order to make a great impression, your front door can help you with:

Victorian front doors

Appealing Aesthetic

Imagine the first thing people see when they look at your house being a gorgeous Victorian front door with great finish as it shines under the sun. Such an appealing aesthetic is bound to get their attention and have them interested in what comes next. Hence, the aesthetic provided by a front door can never be underestimated.

It adds value to your home

A gorgeous front door brings a value to your house that most other accessories cannot, especially when it is a period front door. The front door is the very first thing prospective buyers notices, and as we have talked about before on this blog, it also influences their decision to buy your house. Hence, a bad front door, or one that is not pleasing to the guy, could also make them reject your house.

Victorian doors

While this does not mean that your front door is what can sell your house, the influence it has cannot be denied. Another great aspect of a period front door is the fact that it sustains its value for a long time to come. It doesn’t matter if you’re not selling your house anytime soon. The door is going to stay there as long as the house, provided you maintain it. Hence, the value of your property is going to be high whenever due to your gorgeous front door.

It gives a sense of security

A good front door is one which serves your house. It’s not just there to make your house more appealing, but it also functions as a line of security that keeps intruders away. The most common entry point of any house is the front door and it’s where burglars and intruders try to gain entry from. If you don’t have appropriate locking systems and security installations in place, your front door security is going to be flimsy, and your house vulnerable. Look for something solid. A strong door with the right lock system will deter any intruder.

The Importance of Doors

Research states that a decision as big as which house to buy takes just eight seconds. Yes, the human mind processes the request and acts on it in just a few seconds. Whether it’s common people, or celebrities, the decision time remains the same. However, more often than not, the decision is based on how the front door looks. “People look at the front door before they look at anything else,” says Melton designer, Cecilia Neal. “Your front door reflects what you think about the house. A door can sell a property.”

Victorian door
a Victorian front door

A Victorian front door with stained and etched-glass panels and side windows, coloured Oxford blue, was behind the sale of a house in Putney. Susie King, the person who bought the house stated, “After being shown round by the agent, I drove back there that night, parked outside and just stared at the door. I wanted to live behind it so badly.” A repainting of the house a decade onwards required a dozen attempts to find the right shade of blue.

Conversely, the front door can also lead to the downfall of a sale. Buyers are more specific about front doors than they normally think. According to the director of John D Wood, Chelsea, Andy Buchanan, “We have had a buyer who refused to complete until we repainted the front door as it was green, which they felt was unlucky.”

The front door must match itself to the house according to Jeremy Musson, the Architecture Editor of Country Life. The door has to meet architectural requirements and the desires of the buyer. For example, planked doors do work well on barns, warehouse conversions, and new-builds, and might be preferred by many buyers.

However, the universal charm of a Georgian front door is still on a level of its own. Its “solid, well constructed, but at the same time curiously domestic and welcoming,” much like the iconic blue London door that Hugh Grant owns in Notting Hill, is far too iconic and comfy. “The classic Georgian combination of solid, panelled door with a glazed fanlight over the top, as in London and Dublin, and Bath and Liverpool terraces, is just magic,” says Mr Musson.

period front doors
One of our Edwardian front doors

However, while they possess a charm of times gone by, it does not mean that period doors, whether Georgian, Victorian, or Edwardian, cannot be used for new house. Many new installments, such as properties on the Wentworth and St George’s Hill estates in Surrey, are dependent upon classical styles and use them on a larger scare. The homeowners are happy to experiment with the size of their establishment, as compared to the colour, tone, or style. “Double doors are vital for new-builds over £2 million,” says Simon Ashwell, of Savills. “They give an impression of a much wider frontage. I will always tell a developer to put in a double door.”

The Importance Of Good Design

It is important that the architectural period or era of your home influences your choice of front door.

The best choice of door for a Victorian home is a Victorian front door. The best choice for a 1920s home is a 1920s front door. Mix the two up and you have a recipe for an aesthetic and financial mistake. To most people their home is their largest financial asset. Replacing your battered, warped front door with a beautiful new one, that looks perfect for the house which surrounds it, should make an appreciable difference to the value of your home and is a shrewd investment. Choose a door from the wrong era and the reverse could be true.

front door London

Georgian houses have simple flat frontages. Windows and doors are set back at least four inches from the brick face. Georgian front doors sometimes have a simple semi-circular fanlight above. Later in the Georgian period more detail appeared. Stone work to provide a grander entrance with classical pillars, pediments, hoods and porches.A typical Georgian door have a simple six panelled design without glass. The two smaller top panels may been changed to glass in the later Georgian or Victorian period.

Victorian houses tended to have narrow hallways and entrances. The front door was often made of softwood and painted, stained or grained to look like hardwood. The doors would have been panelled, divided into four or six sections with some panels filled with glass. A beautiful front door would have been very important to the Victorian home owner so it would have been well maintained with gleaming brass furniture.

Victorian front doors

Edwardian houses were often built on wider plots so a side window sometimes flanked the main door letting in more light to the hallway. The Edwardian front door was often large, panelled and painted with Art Nouveau or Neo-Georgian glass. It was popular to paint the doors red or green. By the Edwardian period most householders no longer had maids to scrub the step and polish the brass knockers so door furniture was finished with a maintenance free black coating. Steps were made of stone or covered with a simple sheet of metal.

The ideal look for a 1920’s home would have been heavy oak doors but often a more affordable choice was staining a cheaper wood. When doors were painted they would have been in dark colours of green and black with edges and panels picked out in cream. Traditional style doors would have used cast iron door furniture. Handles would often be seen two thirds of the way up. Decorative led glass work would have been found in the top half of the door or as a sidelight.

London front door

1930’s style homes would likely have had painted softwood doors with geometric shapes of coloured glass, often using patterns of sun rays or chevrons. Door furniture tended to reflect the Hollywood fashion with chrome.

Bespoke Front Door

Why is Your Front Door Important?

If you have asked this question to yourself many times, here’s the answer offered by some people who make it their business to know the perfect answer.

“So many people neglect the importance of their front door. Painting your door in an attractive dark shade, and either polishing or replacing your door furniture can make a huge difference to a buyer’s first impressions. Dark colours are said to work best, but take a look at your neighbours’ doors and if light colours are a theme consider a more muted grey or pale green, neither of which colours are likely to alienate potential buyers.”

Says Phile Spencer in this extract from a guest blog that he did for Ratedpeople.com.


Often times the very first impression that a property makes on a buyer dictates how the rest of the visit and dealing will go. Buyers find all kinds of irregular things to be a major turn off. This includes front gardens that are unkempt and full of cars or derelict fencing and gates.

The same thoughts are echoed by a certain Leeds sales agent, ‘If they’re not smiling as they step over the threshold then the rest of the viewing is generally a waste of time. If the vendor doesn’t sort it out then you can end up reducing the price. For every eager buyer put off by the surface appearance there’s a shrewd old pro waiting for the price to tumble. It’s the vendor who loses out.”

Period front door

When looking at it from face value, the condition of your front door (Victorian, Georgian, or modern) might not seem to be important or significant to the overall value of your property. However, experts suggest that you would be wise to reconsider that thought.

Here’s a reason why: “The period front door is a very important part of a home’s curb appeal and contributes greatly to the home’s overall value,” says Lipford.

“It’s usually the first opportunity to influence a guest to your home, or a potential buyer of your home, because they’re going to see that from the road,” explains Lipford. “It’s the nose on the face of the house, and it’s important to showcase it in the best light that you possibly can.”

This extract comes from an interview with Danny Lipford. He’s the executive producer and the host of the Home Improvement show on television: Today’s Homeowner with Danny Lipford.


Don’t just take what we say to heart. Have some insight from the experts instead.

If you have asked this question to yourself many times, here’s the answer offered by some people who make it their business to know the perfect answer.

What Does the Colour of Your Door Say About You?

“Your door is a portal to your personality, not just your house.” – Brie Dyas, House Beautiful, 24th July 2015.

Taking this into account, just what might front door colour suggest about you and the way you feel about your home? After a lengthy discussion with a colour psychologist, we found out that what some of the most common front door colours might suggest about regard for your home:


Quite easily the most popular colours in various studies, a blue front door suggests that the homeowner might view their home as something that can find peace in. A place of refuge that brings calm, serenity, and relaxation. For the homeowner, it’s the perfect retreat from the harsh and oft highly demanding world.

period front doors


This is another colour with a lot of popularity when it comes to front doors – and there’s a lot of good reasons behind that. In psychological terms, green has connotations with harmony, health, and tranquility. These are attributes all homeowners desire from their home.

Victorian front doors


People who have their front door painted black actually communicate something that’s quite different and unique about their homes. The colour black for a front door exhibits power, strength, sophistication, and authority. It indicates to everyone who looks at the door while walking by that the home is under the ownership of someone with substance and assuredness.

London front door


Red is considered to be a powerful colour with some ‘punch’. It is actually known as the colour of passion. Painting the front door red means that the homeowner wants people to know that the house is full of life, energy, and excitement.


Brown is the natural door colour. Whether the door is painted or stained brown, the feel it gives off is natural and organic. However, the message in colour psychology is mixed and can vary. While typical shades of brown convey warmth, stability, and reliability, some darker shades are not so positive. They give off a vibe that suggests privacy and even isolation.

front door London

It’s quite likely that the colour you have selected for your front door exhibits the way you want people to look at your house. It’s a way of making them understand just what the place is all about. If you purchased the house and wish to say something different than the previous owner, the best thing to do is to have a new front door made and painted in a colour that you desire.

Silence is Golden

According to customs and specific case, doors should be closed as quietly as can be. An example is the case of communal buildings, the people living on the ground floor next to the entrance front door would probably dislike whenever the door will be banged shut. Hence, closing the door as silently as possible is a necessity in this case and many more as well. So what exactly can be done to ensure the required silence?

victorian front doors
A magnetic door lock

The initial step involves identifying which part of the door is making the sound. Usually, there are two different sources. It could either be the sound of wood banging into wood when the door hits the frame, or the sound of the lock filling in its place. Sometimes, there could even be a third noise coming from communal front doors. It’s the buzzing of locks in case the door is electronic. Hence, if you need a new door to be fit in, reducing the sound is necessary. Here are some of the things you can do to reduce it:

  1. Locks – replacing the regular communal door lock with a magnetic one helps eliminate the sound that arises when the lock hits its lock keep. It also removes the buzzing from electronic front doors. Most magnetic locks offer operations that are completely silent.
  2. Make sure to check the doorstops and replace them with new ones that offer more ease in closing. You need something that is a generous, soft draught excluder. This kind of doorstop eliminates the wood-on-wood impact sound and decreases sound immensely.
  3. Overhead door closer – installing an overhead door closer, that is fitted in with a brake, allows the door to shut silently no matter how hard it is moved. The door closer stops the swing of the door at a certain point and this small resistance makes the door lose its pace and shut more slowly. The door now moves slower for the final stretch of a few centimetres, which allows it to cushion against the frame and softly slide in to meet the magnetic lock anchors. Hence, doors banging against their frames will no longer be an issue.

Making the Most of Your Home

Owning a property in London helps you attain a special status. It’s not about class or anything. What you own instead is a piece of history and your automatically become a custodian of just one part of the country and city’s incomparable cultural heritage.

One thing you might have never thought about is just how much of a role your front door has to play as the focal point of your home’s overall aesthetic, along with both its appeal and its unique character. Whether it is negative or positive, the effect of the front door cannot be diminished. One thing you can notice is that a trip down London’s streets looking for good looking houses will show that the best-looking ones have a wonderful front door.

Victorian front door

It’s quite saddening to think about the act that it has not always been financially possible, or even something fashionable, to preserve the original period features expressed in architecture. When homeowners were compelled to change the front door, what they found were mass produced, poor quality doors made out of wood, plastic, or aluminium. These have been the only options for so long that they have slowly crept across the entire city’s visage.

Thankfully, we now live in an era where homeowners actually care about and appreciate the traditional aesthetics found in our domestic architecture. It’s not just about giving off a rustic appearance either. The homeowners are well aware that keeping the period aesthetic of their home intact is bound to maximise the value of their property, which is usually their most important and valuable asset.

period front door

With a beautiful front door, you can pretty much transform your home’s entire appearance. Furthermore, you can also add some value to it which is bound to give you a thrill full of excitement whenever you look at it or use in the future.

Bespoke Front Door was established from a passion and love for the British period aesthetic, with an undying commitment towards the preservation of our cultural and architectural heritage. We offer a number of services, specialising in production, design, and installation of period front doors. Furthermore, we are always available for consultation and can offer you all kinds of advice and guidance on how to get the best out of your home’s most prominent and important feature.