Letterboxes may be a common feature in homes, but they aren’t always the predominant ones. It is not uncommon to find homeowners who choose to stick with a letterbox that comes packaged with their home. In fact, very few think twice about their letterbox as most are focused on its basic utilitarian purpose; that is, to receive and keep mail. Most people don’t realize that there is more to letterboxes than simply storing mail.
Why is a letterbox important? Other than protecting your mail and packages from unscrupulous individuals, a letterbox also shields your expected deliveries from the elements. Plus, a attentively selected unit has the potential to increase your home’s curb appeal.
There are a lot of types of letterboxes available for sale. Other than the generic type, homeowners can choose from a variety of options — freestanding, post-mounted, wall-mounted, fence-mounted and brick-in, among others. For apartment dwellers and offices, there are letterboxes designed specifically for certain building types as well.
With the variety of letterboxes available, you can choose one that fits the look of your property, your taste or requirements. A local interior design company can pick out a letterbox or give you advice on which models complement the look of your home or building.
So if you are planning to buy a new letterbox, here are a few factors to consider:
Do you want your letterbox to stand out or blend in with the design of the rest of your home? The choice is yours.
You can have a modern wall-mounted mailbox that features a rust texture to make it pop. On the other hand, if your home is surrounded by a brick wall, you can also opt for a brick-in letterbox. This allows your letterbox to blend in and not draw any attention or stay inconspicuous.
Your chosen letterbox can also feature intricate floral designs and leaves on metal. These types of letterboxes are suited for period homes such as those done in Victorian, Edwardian, Greek Revival or English Cottage styles. For contemporary or more modern homes, letterboxes with a simpler design may be more suitable.
Traditional letterboxes tend to be small and are designed to only hold a few letters. If you have multiple newspaper and magazine subscriptions or expect to receive a lot of packages in the mail periodically, consider opting for a bigger letterbox such as a parcel box. Parcel boxes are recommended for people who like to shop online or who are running a business from home.
The size of your mailbox is also critical if you travel a lot. By picking a mailbox with the right depth and capacity, you are ensuring that there is enough space for the postal worker or courier to leave your packages safely. This will also prevent thieves from getting to your mail while you are away from home.
Where do you plan to place your letterbox outdoors? Consider the layout of your property as the amount of space you have available can affect your options.
Fence-mounted, post-mounted, brick-in and freestanding types are better suited for properties with a yard or garden. For homes with a more limited outdoor area, wall-mounted types may be better choices.
Before choosing a mailbox, consider the weather and climate in your area as there are materials that are better suited to specific weather conditions.
For instance, for homes located along the coast, letterboxes made with marine-grade wood, stainless steel and aluminum are recommended. These types of materials are specially designed to retain their structural integrity even in the presence of moisture.
There are also mailboxes made from other types of wood, copper and brass. They can give your home a warm, homey, vintage feel but may require additional maintenance from time to time.
The local weather can also influence what features you should look for in a letterbox. Most modern letterboxes have what is known as a draft excluder. This built-in flap is useful if you live in a windy area.
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Look for letterboxes that can be locked. This will deter potential thieves from fishing out your mail. If you feel that a lock is not enough, you can also install CCTV cameras focused on your letterbox.
Remember that a letterbox is more than just a container for letters. It is a tool that should keep your deliveries safe regardless of whether you are at home or not.
By keeping these factors in mind, you are in a better position to buy a letterbox that suits your home and needs.
Beau Flavell has been a Product & Account Manager for Sandleford Holdings since July 2017. He completed his VCE at Brighton Grammar School and also holds an A-Class Electrician License. Beau has been working on developing a new range of innovative letterboxes and currently lives in Melbourne, Australia.