The doors of your home are important practical and aesthetic features. But they’re not all alike. Consider the front door, back door, and utility doors. How do these differ? What features should you look for in common? And what elements are most important? Here’s a guide to the characteristics of your exterior doors and how to find the right ones for every location.

1. Providing Security

Exterior doors are a major risk point for home security, so always start by prioritizing good security features and solid construction. However, front doors are often expected to provide more security than back doors. After all, they face the public and often have little additional perimeter protection in front yard design.

The back door is usually more relaxed and has the benefit of opening onto a private — and usually fenced — area of your home. It’s often the exterior door valued more for its decorative nature than its security. However, it should still boast secure locks to keep intruders out.

Do you have additional utility doors, such as to or from the garage? Put security first in these less-used (and often less-monitored) high-risk points.

2. Standing Out

Should your exterior door stand out from its surroundings? This is a key design difference between a front and a secondary door.

Front doors often look best when they do stand out to some extent. They provide a focal point for the front yard. Their contrast and bolder design show visitors where the main entrance is located. And they’re usually one of the few features of the home’s front facade that homeowners can easily alter.

3. Fitting In

How much — and to which elements — should your door fit in with its surroundings? This is an area where back doors usually should receive more thought. In many homes, there is one main back door that gets the most foot traffic, especially if you use your outdoor entertainment areas often. This door must generally blend well with both the adjacent interior rooms as well as the outdoor aesthetic of your yard.

4. Transparency

Should your doors be solid or have some glass features? Modern exterior doors with glass elements can be very secure despite not being fully solid. But how much do you want the public to be able to see inside your home?

Strangers come to the front door, not the back door, so privacy is much less of a concern with back doors. In fact, more open and transparent back doors may be preferable since they’re inviting, airy, and beautiful. So if you want glass, this may be a better place to put it.

5. Budget-Friendliness

Finally, what should all of your doors cost? Many people spend the most on their primary entrance door because this is the first impression that visitors have of their home. It’s also usually a larger and more elaborate door than others. However, don’t undervalue a good main back door. It may have a big visual impact on the related rooms and some families may use it often.

In general, many homeowners find that a good budget split is to spend the most on their front door, a mid-range on the main back door, and the least on any other utility doors.

Where Should You Start?

Balancing all the roles and details in exterior doors can be difficult. Start by meeting with the residential door pros at New Beginnings Window and Door. We’ll work with you to identify the right level of door security, budget-friendliness, and aesthetic value for every exterior door on your property. Call today to make an appointment to get answers to your questions.