Thursday, October 22, 2015

One Room Challenge // Exterior Week 3

Welcome back to the One Room Challenge hosted by sweet Linda of Calling It Home. We are in Week 3 of an Exterior makeover, and I’m GIDDY to show you this past week’s progress. We have a new garage door!! And, let me tell ya, I never thought I could be this excited about a garage door.

Since I know a lot of you are paying attention because you're looking to tackle a similar project, I'm going to share the specifics of our shopping process and price comparisons. If you're just here for pretty-ish progress photos, you have my full and guilt-free permission to skip to the pics. :)

I wanted a carriage-style garage door, with a row of windows at the top, straps and hardware. Something similar to this:

We started with Home Depot. I went to the gal at the computers at the back of the store, near the garage door display. I didn't waste any time trying to piece together a configuration using their samples or pamphlets- way too confusing. We just built the door I wanted together in the computer.

For a high-quality carriage-style door with windows and hardware, including installation, Home Depot's price was $3600. (They were pricing Clopay doors). Just for comparison, I had them price a mid-grade door with no windows. That was $1800. And then because I was so shocked, I asked them what the very cheapest garage door they had would cost. That was $800, but had no insulation or frills- basically a sheet of tin foil (their words, not mine). All these prices included installation.

Those prices were honestly depressing. But then someone mentioned that Menards had much better prices, so I went there and went through the same process. I was very encouraged when their Carriage House stamped steel garage door with windows and cute hardware came back at $1641. The brand was Ideal. However, Menards does not offer labor, so we were on our own to contact their recommended installers (or our own finds) for quotes.

We got 4 or 5 quotes, and most were around $500 for the installation. One guy came back at $250 for installation and we were thrilled. We wanted him to come over and measure for us and double check everything before we ordered, but he stood us up on the night he said he'd come. I guess you get what you pay for! Let's just say we didn't call to reschedule. :) 

Another of the installers came and immediately warned us we shouldn't get a Menards garage door. He said it wouldn't fit because of the windows, and tried to sell us something out of the pamphlet he brought. He seemed pretty sketchy, and like he was just trying to sell us on his own product. We didn't call him back either.

After that, though, I did start to worry about Menards' quality, and I couldn't find tons of reviews online. Of the reviewers I found, most were fairly happy with their doors, but warned the doors were going to arrive scratched and damaged.

Unsure of what door would be best and what installer we could trust, we called a friend who works in the commercial garage door industry and he gave us a name.

Mark called back immediately, gave us a prompt quote, and answered all of our questions. He agreed that Menards quality was less than desirable, but was able to give us concrete reasons why. He quoted us the same style door as Menards but it was thicker with upgraded parts, and his price was $1640- INSTALLED. Even if he was trying to pull one over on us and Menards quality was just fine, Mark was way cheaper, so whatevs!

Mark ordered the door for us on a Monday morning and installed it Tuesday afternoon. He was awesome. (The door is from C.H.I. Overhead Doors - Style 5983). His info. is in the card above- (he's been doing this 31 years all word of mouth, so he doesn't have a website)- and I'd highly recommend him to anyone in Chicago.

Now, would you like to see?! Here's a shot of the "before" to refresh your memory:

Here's about the moment Mark realized he was working for a weirdo who wouldn't stop taking pictures of him as he was piecing the door together:

And, goodbye old door! Here's the "after"...!

As Mark was finishing up, it was sunset, and the sun was hitting the front of our house, making the whole thing glow like burnished gold. It was like one of those moments in the movies where the clouds part and the sunrays beam down and the angel chorus goes “aaaaahhhhhhh” was glorious!

I totally can’t believe how much it already changes the front of the house. The glass is so new and shiny, and even the inside of the garage is completely transformed. What was once a dark box with one tiny bulb is now a brightly lit and open-feeling space. 

(The downside of course is that now we can see how dirty it is, and that “organize the garage” just jumped up six spots on the priority list. Seriously- it’s so bad. And yes, that is the Tuft & Needle box from our last ORC that we still haven’t thrown away. #hoarders).

Here's a look at the before & after side by side:

Other than the garage going in, we haven’t actually DONE anything else. We kinda hit the pause button, to ahem, go to San Diego for a week of vacation. Ha! Between this and my client installations over the next few weeks, this is going to leave us exactly two Sundays to do the work on the rest of the project. No biggie, right? I'm sure the weather will totally cooperate with that plan.

Wish us luck! Be sure to check out my fellow crazies on the ORC over at Linda’s. I’m especially keeping an eye on Christine Dovey (seriously like watching an edge of your seat heart races when I read her posts. Show up trusses!) and E-Interiors (whose bedroom, even blank on Day One, was already eye candy).


  1. What a difference. The new garage door looks amazing!

  2. That new garage door made a huge difference. It looks amaze!

  3. Oh I love it! I don't think you can beat a carriage style door. Yours looks amazing!

  4. Such beautiful garage doors!! They look amazing!!

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  6. Those garage doors have me swooning!!! A M A Z I N G! Thanks for the mention. I love following along on your makeover. xoxo Megan

  7. Holy geez!!! Makes me want to upgrade ours too (but couldn't have windows as our sh*t would get stolen the first night probably).

  8. Oh my gosh, your new door is absolutely beautiful! I can't believe what a difference it makes!

  9. Um. That might have been the BEST money you could ever spend on your house. AMAZING. And I'm dying that you referenced the angels singing, because that is the standard of awesomeness in my house. I started it when I put up the penny tile wall in the pantry in last fall's ORC and I had to make the "Ahhhhhh" noise every time I saw it! Now I seriously walk around saying things to my husband like, "well, the angels aren't quite singing yet, but I think they stopped crying". He thinks I've lost my mind, but I find it to be a great scale of design goodness.

  10. That door is so awesome. It makes the front of your house look like a 10 already! And, it was totally making me want to do the same thing to my house, until I saw your comment about cleaning the garage. There is no way I'm going into my garage willingly even if it does mean a new garage door!:)

  11. My hubby and I have been garage door shopping and really like the CHI doors. So glad to hear that you like yours!

  12. Girl! Who knew a garage door could make such a transformation! It's amazing! LOVE IT!

  13. Wow! I love it!! Great transformation. Now I want a new garage. Just finally able to check in on my fellow participants, I can't wait to see the reveal.

  14. Holy cow, that's a HUGE transformation! Looks amazing and I love the style you picked out!

  15. Oh my WOW! That door really does make a huge difference -- congratulations! It is glorious! Really compliments the style of your house. And I am so impressed with your perseverance to get it to a better price range. Winning all around. Best of luck with the rest!

  16. Fabulous! One small huge result.

  17. I love that new door! I agree - it completely transforms the house and takes it from a nice house to a fabulous house! Isn't amazing how just one relatively simple update can have such a remarkable effect? Is it still a rolling door?

  18. Love the garage door, its simple but look amazing. Exterior makeover completely transformed with those doors.

    chicago exterior remodeling company

  19. The garage door maintenance doesn't end up with the periodical inspection and maintenance process done by the experienced professionals.

    Garage Doors Repairs Company in uk All city visit this link :


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