Side door transformation on a tight budget

Hello friends! I hope you had a blessed holiday season. I enjoyed a wonderful Christmas break and just dove back into regular life and the flip project this week.

Today I wanted to show you how I transformed the carport entrance at the white house on a very small budget.

Here’s a peek at the “before” of the space:

Side-door-before Side-door-before-2

I started by cleaning out the carport and giving the aluminum siding a really good scrubbing. It’s amazing how even just a cleanup and clean out can make a huge difference. (I also painted the floor, ceiling and exterior walls in this space, which I’m excited to share with you soon.)

After cleaning, I removed the dated screen door and scrubbed and polished the solid wood door behind it.

Then I replaced the hardware on the door. Here’s what I started with:


Typically, pretty much every DIY project I attempt at the flip house takes twice as long and makes me sweat twice as much as originally anticipated.

However, installing this hardware took me a total of 15 minutes! I had never installed door hardware start to finish all by myself before, so I was prepared for the worst. But it was a piece of cake! I was really proud of myself that I was able to tackle this project with no problems. It is so very, very rare. 🙂

I chose the Schlage® Flair Lever Keyed Entry Lock in Aged Bronze.

Schlage-handleset Mortise



Here’s what the side entrance looks like now:


Can you believe what a difference new hardware, some paint and a good scrubbing can make?


Special thanks to Schlage for providing, at my request, the hardware I installed on this door. As always, all opinions and projects are 100 percent mine. 

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19 Responses

  1. grammy goodwill says:

    Love that door you chose. What an improvement.

  2. Mary says:

    An incredible job! You proved that the old saying: “you never know what you can do until you try” is true!

  3. polly says:

    wow- unbelievable!you must be so happy with the results!!Have you ever used Murphy’s Oil soap on wood? I’ve used it on wood floors and my hutch, both of which were old and looked dry, and it works great at cleaning and moisturizing, plus it smels nice, no chemical smell.

  4. Kim R says:

    Schlage has a quality product. I will be replacing the builder grade hardware on my home with something from their line soon. I hope my installation goes as smoothly as yours!
    Beautiful transformation!

  5. TwoPlusCute says:

    Goodness, you really transformed that door!
    And what great styling. 🙂

  6. Julia says:

    Wow! So pretty! We are doing the same to our side entry and this post is a great inspiration.

  7. Patty says:

    Wow, what a difference it looks beautiful.

  8. Dawn Rene in ATL says:

    OMG, it’s amazing what a difference you have made from removing that dated storm door and replacing hardware! And the painted concrete looks incredible too!! Spectacular…keep up the good work. I am so excited to see more transformations.

  9. Cindy says:

    Very pretty! I love that door.

  10. jaye says:

    I think the transformation is beautiful, defenatly sweat equity involved. My only confusion is I think the door knobs are reversed if that’s a side door entrance from the carport? Shouldn’t that thumb lock be inside and key lock out? Forgive me if I’m seeing it wrong.

    • Susan says:

      If you zoom in to the picture with the boots, you’ll notice the outside is a keyed lock. The closeup of the lever was a photo taken from the inside of the house, so it’s the interior side of the door. Does that make sense? Good observation. 😉

  11. Katie Emery says:

    I have that same door – what did you paint it with? I also removed the screen door but, I unfortunately have the screen door hinges to remove – it’s the entire length of the opening – I don’t want to wreck anything… Looks great – can’t wait to paint my door too!

    • Susan says:

      I didn’t paint it with anything. I just scrubbed it down really well and gave it a good polish with some wood paste. That fixed some of the cracks and mars in the wood.

  12. Megan says:

    Wow great improvement!

  13. Barbara says:

    what did you clean the door with?

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