Why Just a Garage Door When It Could Be So Much More? 3 Tips from the Pros You Shouldn’t Miss

If you ask the average family what its 2 most expensive purchases are, the prompt reply will be: our home and our car.

The only front-facing point at which these 2 expressions of expense and personality come together is the garage door.

Beginning in the mid-20th century, an attached garage went from being a luxurious add-on to a homeowner's absolute necessity.

Indeed, the garage door quickly became the largest single element of a home's façade. Utilitarian in design and bland in appearance, the garage door became that part of a home's appearance we just learned to overlook.

Garage door with drawing

Things have changed in the last few years, however.

Designers have learned how to incorporate the style, color, and design nuance of a home into the appearance of a garage door.

Now, with a great variety of inserts, colors, and glazing options, the garage door has taken its place as an attractive appointment, equal to and complementary with all other elements of a home's elevation.

Never Underestimate the Importance of Your Garage Door

From window treatments to landscaping, there are many design elements of our homes into which we invest a great deal of thought and expense.

The appearance of our garages has seldom been one of those cherished items. Likely, our tendency to discount the garage door has been in part because we viewed it as a necessary evil — we had to have a place to keep the car from the blazing sun and the bitter cold — and because there were not many things we could do to alter the door's appearance.

We just accepted the way the garage door looked and tried to ignore it.

There are a couple of important reasons to revisit our garage doors.

The first has to do with money.

Eventually, almost every piece of our homes must be refurbished, from the shingles on the roof to the floor coverings. When we have to make major repairs, we assume it's just “money down the drain.”

There are those replacements; however, that enhance the appearance — the “curb appeal” — of our homes and thus increase its value.

Surprisingly, one of the best dollar-for-dollar expenditures we can make is the purchase of a quality garage door.

A study in Remodeling Magazine in 2018 found that upgrading a home's garage door was one of the best renovation strategies, resulting in a 98% return on investment.

The National Association of Realtors pegged an attractive garage door as one of the key “wow” factors that could create as much a 4% increase in purchase price should you decide to put your home up for sale.

Of course, much more than simply being a financial investment, our home is an expression of who we are.

Just as our personal preferences are apparent in the clothes we wear and the vehicle we drive, our homes reflect who we are as individuals.

If the garage door isn't an expression of our chosen, refined personal style, it's the equivalent of a blemish on an otherwise beautiful face.

What is Your Style Among these 3 Most Popular Ones?

Virtually every American single-family dwelling can be placed into one of three broad categories.

Is Your Style Traditional?

The inside of a traditional style home

The largest of the 3 styles is the Traditional home style.

Traditional homes are often called “classic” or just “American” in their design, though the traditional format has actually assimilated a number of qualities from various home building styles handed down over the centuries.

In general, they are characterized by symmetric layouts of the elements:

  • repeated dormers and roof peaks,
  • covered entries and porches,
  • front-facing gables,
  • and finished with traditional building materials like brick, wood, or stone.
  • Windows tend to use multiple panes of the same size, surrounded by accented wood trim.

The underlying purpose of the traditionally designed home is functionality. Interior spaces have intended purposes: eating, sleeping or gathering.

The home is designed for convenience and practicality on the inside and is meant to have a warm, hospitable appearance on the outside.

Traditional homes are often intentionally built to harmonize with the neighborhood where they are found, with their uniqueness expressed in crisp, beautiful landscaping and up-to-date exterior and interior accessories and treatments.

Standard+ Classic MIX, 9' x 7', Desert Sand

How do you like this look? You'll find 9x7 Garage Doors in the Classic Mix Pattern, featuring Desert Sand as the color.

If you want your garage door to coordinate with your traditionally designed home, you will want the design of the door to follow the symmetry of the house to the extent possible.

Windows in the door can be fixed with symmetrical inserts that mirror the window designs of the façade.

Standard+ Prestige XL, 9' x 8', Moka Brown, Cachet windows

Do you prefer this style? You'll find 9x7 Garage Doors in the Prestige XL Pattern, featuring Moka Brown coloring and Cachet Windows.

While traditional homes often have lots of glass to let in the light, windows are typically well-trimmed with shutters and contrasting colors. Similarly, your garage door can use the same colors in muted tones, so as not to distract from the home's elevation, or it can use very dark colors and lighter trim to call attention to the windows.

Is Your Style Contemporary/Modern?

The inside of a contemporary style home

The Contemporary Home, or Modern style, emerged in the middle of the 20th century as an antithesis to the traditional home.

Almost as a reaction to the even, symmetric design of the traditional style, the contemporary home was intended to be asymmetrical, with the sightlines of the house calling attention to defined open spaces or to the natural setting of the house.

Here are 5 characteristics of contemporary home design:

  • Open interiors with lots of natural light
  • Harmony with the natural setting of the house
  • Simple, asymmetric elevations
  • Roofs that are typically flat or having no peaks
  • Primarily constructed of atypical material, such as metal or glass

The message of the contemporary home is openness, oneness with the natural setting.

The modern house is meant to be unique and to stand apart in its appearance — to be not quite like any other home in the neighborhood.

Walls in contemporary homes tend to be monolithic in appearance, unbroken by accessorized looks, with windows that follow the design of the wall. Windows are often clustered in specific locations as if watching for the rising or setting sun.

The garage door that complements a contemporary home will often be muted in color so as not to distract from the geometric sightline of the house.

Standard+ Vog, 9' x 7', Black, window layout: Right-side Harmony

Does this one pique your interest? You'll find 9x8 Garage Doors in the VOG Pattern, in elegant black, featuring Right Side Harmony Windows.

While contemporary walls may be monolithic, their garage door designs can take a wide variety of appearances, often using stacked “harmony” windows that mimic the rectangular, angled design of the façade.

California, Black aluminum frame, Satin glass

What do you think of this option? It features a 6x7.5 and a 16x8.5 CALIFORNIA Garage Door with a black aluminum frame, with inset Sanblasted Glass Windows.

Just as there are no hard and fast rules of contemporary garage door designs, so the glass in these contemporary doors may be nearly opaque, to diminish the visibility of the door, or it may be clear and broad, to accentuate the openness of the structure.

Is Your Style Country?

The inside of a country style home

The 3rd style, the Country Home, is also referred to as the vacation home or the cottage.

This style is known for:

  • Peaked roofs
  • Large porticoes and porches
  • Sizeable gathering spaces
  • Ample trim on windows and doors.

Country homes are generally characterized by being open, with high ceilings, long roof lines and eaves with gracious overhangs.

Country homes are often 2 stories high. Traditional building materials, and particularly wood, are used in the construction and façade of the country home.

Like the traditional building style, country homes developed over the centuries from a combination of different styles, notably French colonial homes and rural farmhouses.

While, in times past, the country house was mostly found in rural or less populated areas, the style has made its way into more suburban settings in recent decades.

The underlying message of the country home is hospitality.

The house itself is often designed around the placement of the kitchen, with designated dining areas. Floor plans tend to be uncomplicated and inviting.

Plenty of entrance and exit ways are provided to encourage interaction with the outdoors.

Princeton P-21, 9' x 7', Chocolate Walnut doors and overlays, 8 lite Panoramic windows

Like this home? You'll find PRINCETON P-21 Garage Doors with X-shaped overlays in Chocolate Walnut and 8 Lite Panoramic Windows.

The exterior construction elements, like porches, tend to give the country home a larger appearance and to emphasize the abiding air of hospitality.

Cambridge CS, 9' x 7', Ice White door and overlays, 4 lite Panoramic windows

Prefer the look of this home? This is a single CAMBRIDGE CS Garage Door in Ice White with overlays and 4 Lite Panoramic Windows.

The garage door of a country home should mimic the multiple portals — doors and windows — of the home itself.

Carriage-house doors are unmistakable thanks to their overlays.

You'll find 4 different overlay options, including A, V, X, and square-shaped choices that help you create a stunning, elegant home.

A single look is all you need to know if this is the right choice for you.

Vantage Shaker-CS Long, 9' x 8', Dark Walnut, windows with Stockton Inserts

Love this one? These are Vantage SHAKER-CS LONG Garage Doors in Dark Walnut with overlays, windows featuring the Stockton Insert, and unique decorative hardware.

Thankfully, garage windows can be customized in such a way as to closely resemble most window inserts. The same degree of light as allowed can also be achieved with the garage windows. Garage door colors and designs have the ability to remain understated or to be another expression of welcome and openness for the country home.

What Color Suits Your Taste? And Add House Value too!

When it comes to choosing the right color for a new garage door,

the first question isn't “What color do I want,” but rather,

“Do I want the garage door to be a ‘statement’ or an ‘understatement’?”

Standing back and looking at your home, you should ask yourself to what extent you want visitors and passerby to either notice the door or to look past it.

Of course, the door can be noticed not because of its own design and color, but because of the trim, windows, and elements around it.

Whatever your decision about the boldness of the door, the good news is that there are many colors and designs to choose from to achieve the look you're after.

Styles tend to trend and so do colors.

These days, darker garage doors and particularly Black doors are extremely popular.

Eastman E-11, 16' x 8', Black door and overlays, 4 vertical lite Panoramic windows

Love this elegant look? This is an EASTMAN E-11 Garage Door in black, with overlays, and 4 Lite Panoramic Windows.

One virtue of black doors is that their darkness minimizes the size of the door and calls attention to any accent or trim used around them.

Another reason black as a garage door color fairs so well is that it can be used with Traditional, Contemporary, or Country style homes with equal ease.

It also suits the greatest variety of building materials, from stucco to stone to wood.

Warning Hot Icon

If there is one downside to black as the chosen color of your garage door, it is that black more than any other color absorbs heat. This can transfer heat to the inside of the garage and might even be dangerous to those who aren't aware of this capacity.

Of course, black isn't the only color.

Other earth tones, likeMoka Brown, Charcoal and Sandstone, are also quite popular.

Faux wood colors are trending as well.

If you love natural wood but hate wood maintenance, here are the 5 best wood-tone colors to consider:

You Know that Glass Adds Class, Right?

Another essential choice to make when selecting your new garage door has to do with the windows.

Regardless of where they are placed in the design of the door, the windows may be accessorized with a plethora of inserts and an amazingly wide variety of glass styles.

In choosing inserts, you will likely want to match the trim of the home's windows.

Virtually any style of window trim can be paralleled with the inserts that are currently available.

It's important to note that window inserts are actually installed on the exterior side of the glass. When necessary, they can be easily removed if a pane needs to be replaced or other work is required.

When it comes to the type of glass, you must ask yourself, how much light do I want to let into the garage?

You have a multitude of choices in this regard as well, with many possibilities for the opacity, texture, and energy efficiency of the glass.

It's a lot to take in? We know!

Regardless of your home's style and what sort of design statement you'd like to make with it, you clearly have a great variety of options when it comes to enhancing the appearance of your home with a new garage door.

Choosing the right design, matching colors, and selecting the perfect glass may seem a little overwhelming.

We have good news for you: a professional garage door dealer can smooth the process and see the new installation through to your complete satisfaction.

At Midway Garage Doors, we're glad to assist your design efforts, from our online Design Centre and showroom to emailed quotes, we standby ready to help you find the perfect garage door that will complete the appearance of your home.

You prefer talking to “real persons”, with know-how and great tips right now? Give us a call!

Toll Free: 1-866-573-3667

Phone: 330-889-0062

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