Julie Kochie had loved the house for years. As a realtor, she saw it go on and off the market and then back on the market again. That’s when she knew she had to act. It had good bones and enough room for her busy family — Julie and her husband are parents to a 2-year-old. She bought the home, knowing there was a lot of work to do.

“When you go in and look at it, cosmetically, it’s pretty bad,” Julie said. “It looked pretty bad, but it seemed to be functional.”

But the house also had the perfect address for all their activities. To quote those in the real estate industry, it had location, location, location. It is 1/4 mile from the entrance to Monte Sano State Park, with a view overlooking Highway 72 East and Moore’s Mill Road. And it’s one-acre lot meant there was plenty of room for their son to go on backyard adventures.

It would be a project piece, something they would have to work on as a family before they had their dream home, but with some help from Wilson Lumber, the house is quickly becoming the home they had worked toward for so long.

Throughout the whole renovation experience, Wilson Lumber has been by Julie’s side. Her contractors bought supplies from Wilson Lumber at a great price, and Julie especially appreciated how Wilson Lumber staff respected her valuable time.

“It was easy to go in and say, ‘Here’s what I need. Go find it for me,’” Julie said about Wilson Lumber. “I don’t have a lot of time to shop around for stuff. I know what I want, but I don’t necessarily have time to go pick through everything and find it. So, that’s been helpful to me.”

What Is That?

Julie wasn’t the first person to try to fix the house. Built in the 1950s, the original part of the home was small. Over time, previous owners added a wing on the left side of the house, a garage on the right side, a sunroom on the back and an additional master bedroom. The design eras were mixed, and not in a good way. Half the front was brick and half was vinyl siding.

While Julie loved some of the quirkiness of the house, it was a little too much for her classic style.

“I (tried) to keep the style of the house consistently with what’s already there,” she said.

The first thing that had to be fixed was the front entrance — it was a metal, contractor-grade door from the 1990s. On top of that, the former owner had built out what Julie describes as a vestibule-type thing shaped like half an octagon, with windows on either side. 

“You just walk up to the house, and you’re just like, ‘What is that?’ ” Julie said.

To make things even more challenging, the home actually had two front doors, so Julie needed to have a matching set that would give both entrances an inviting look.

Julie looked online for inspiration before heading to Wilson Lumber for professional help. She opted for glass doors with four large panes that let in a lot of natural light.

It was paintable, so Julie had the door made to complement the color scheme she had picked out for her house.

First Impressions

Julie has been in real estate for five years, so she knows just how important that front door is. It’s what buyers, as well as visitors, see first. It’s what sets the tone for the house, the home and the family.

“That makes a huge statement for when you walk up to a house, if it’s clean and decorated nicely and it’s up-to-date. It gives you a warm feeling before you even enter the house,” Julie said. “It’s a very important portion of the showing. If you walk up to it, and it’s dirty, and it’s ugly, you’re like, ‘What’s inside? It can’t be much better.’ ”

Life of an Architect describes the front door as “the first exclamation mark of the entry procession.” It also says people fall into one of two categories — the ones who need to be able to see out the front door and those who do not. Seems pretty simple. The first group consists of people who are concerned with security and want to be able to see who’s on their stoop before they open the door. The second group includes those who prefer a more private home — a nice way of saying you don’t need a glass door if you plan on dancing around in your underwear.

Whatever category you fit into, Wilson Lumber can help with your design needs. For Julie and her family, it was the perfect entrance to their happy home they needed.

Julie says one of the things she is most looking forward to is decorating her new front doors with matching wreaths and then taking pictures of her son standing in front of their home.

There’s no doubt the doors from Wilson Lumber will set the backdrop for countless memories to come.