Here's what you need to know to choose the right one for your home.

By Carolyn Weber
Updated July 25, 2008
Depending on the type of door you have, repainting or staining and refinishing it is a simple upgrade that can really make a huge difference—and you’ll only spend $20 to $50 in the process.“Colorwise, it’s O.K. to choose something interesting to draw the eye to the entrance, but don’t go crazy with fuchsia or hunter orange,” Wilson says. “Whenever somebody needs advice on choosing a paint color, I tell them to use the color wheel they learned in third grade.” For instance, if your home is brick red, a complementary color would be a bluish gray door or a golden hue, suggests Wilson.If you really want to go all out, you can install a brass kick plate (about $30) and new latch hardware (from about $50)—and still stay within a reasonable budget.Total DIY time: Up to 3.5 hours, with 1 hour of prep, 1 hour for priming and painting, ½ hour to install the kick plate, and 1 hour to install the latch hardware.Price: $30 to $200, depending on whether you add hardware.
Aimee Herring

If your flimsy storm door has seen better days (could it have any more dents?), consider making an upgrade. Although not a necessity, storm doors can provide ventilation and add another layer of protection against the elements. The newest versions can be fitted with Low-E glass, which blocks solar radiation, or screens that retract when not in use.

Storm doors are typically made of wood, steel, fiberglass, or aluminum and come in full view or midview (with a solid bottom). For maximum flexibility, choose one with removable panels that can be switched out according to the seasons―glass in the winter and screens in the summer. One caveat: If your front door gets even a few hours of direct sunlight a day, a glass storm door may trap heat and damage your front door. Prices range from about $90 to $350 (with screens and glass included).