Foyer Makeovers Preparation Foyer Makeovers Preparation

by Alden Smith

The foyer of your home is the first indication to your visitors about who you are, and how you live.  Because first impressions are always critical, making the foyer a warm and inviting place is essential.  In this three part series we discuss foyer makeovers, different styles to try, and ways to make your foyer warm and inviting.

The Basics

Before you begin to make a foyer makeover, experts agree that the entrance door itself must be inspected and repaired if needed.  Real estate agents say that when guests arrive at your door, the first thing they see is its condition, and it gives them the first impression of what the rest of the house may be like. 

Inspect the door, and replace any brass kick plates that are dented or corroded.  Replace existing doorknobs if corroded and worn.  Lock plates should be shiny and not scratched up from keys.  If the door itself shows sign of more than average wear, consider replacing it also, or at the very least refinish it.

Always have a fresh welcome mat in place.  This not only is inviting, but insures that guests do not track dirt, snow or water into the home

If your home has a screen door, insure that the screen is not rusted nor has holes in it.  It costs little to replace a screen, and the impression it makes will be favorable.

The Foyer

The foyer, a place to greet guests and to store outer wear, should not be confused with a “mud room” because it is a formal place to greet guests.  A mud room is an informal entrance to the home, where family members can remove dirty or wet clothing, or exuberant pets can be brought into the house. 

To make the foyer inviting, experts agree that walls should be a different color than the adjacent room.  They advise against pale colors, instead opting for darker colors that won't show the scuff marks because of the nature of traffic in this area. 

A hardwood floor is recommended in the foyer, with a colorful rug for guests to step in upon.  The floor will be easier to clean and keep dry, and scuff marks are easier to deal with. 

Proper lighting in the foyer is essential to creating the atmosphere that you wish to convey.  One of the most recommended fixtures is a crystal chandelier.  You can alter the mood of the foyer by placing lighting on a three way switch or a dimmer switch.  Your goal here is to insure that the foyer is properly lit, but not glaringly so. 

Don't make the mistake of cluttering the foyer with heavy furniture.  You need a place to put your keys, perhaps the mail, and an area for a coat rack or umbrella stand.  A mirror is a good addition here above the table or chest of drawers where these things are placed.  The mirror expands the typically narrow space. 

In part 2, we discuss furniture and wall coverings.

Alden Smith is an award winning author and regular contributor to He writes on a variety of subjects, and excels in research.

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