Things to Consider When Buying a Mailbox

A mailbox is not just a typical holder for your letters and parcels but can also represent your personal taste and style if you choose wisely.  Whether you want to improve your home’s exterior with a new decorative mailbox, or simply replace the existing one, buying a mailbox requires some homework, and this is exactly what we are here for. 

Buying a mailbox is not only influenced by your mail routine but several other factors as well. To help simplify the decision-making process, our mailbox buying guide discusses all the essential considerations you should make before deciding on an option. 

5 Things to Consider Before Buying A Mailbox 

Type of Mailbox 

Mailboxes come in 4 different types: Post Mount, Free Standing, Wall Mount, Door Mail Slot, categorized according to the style of delivery they best cater to. For instance, if your mail is delivered at the curb of your place, a mount or a freestanding mailbox will most likely help you receive all mail and parcels. 

They stand or hang at a place that is at a distance from your main house entrance. Because they are so popular, curbside mailboxes also come in a wider array of designs than other types, giving you plenty of choices in terms of looks. Pick curbside mailboxes if you do not mind walking several meters to get your mail or parcel. 

Unlike curbside mailboxes, units like door mail slots or wall mount mailboxes facilitate walk-up delivery options in case you have a different setup that lets the post-service deliver mail directly to your home’s entrance. 

These are generally installed on your porch or the home’s exterior wall and thus are a great option if you are somewhat lazy to get your mail from afar. 

Wall mount mailboxes aren’t just used for mail delivery but also play their part in enhancing the overall look of your home’s entranceway, especially when complemented with lovely colors, some DIY decorations, or a money plant. 

Built Material 

Considering the material is a crucial factor when buying any item, and mailboxes are no exception. The weather of your locality can significantly impact your mailbox’s overall performance as different built materials behave differently with each type of weather. 

Hence, it’s intelligent to keep your location’s weather conditions in mind while choosing an option. Also, don’t forget to mind the types of hinges and other minor parts of the mailbox if you don’t want to face any problems in it’s overall functioning. Here’s everything about how common materials that are used to make mailboxes differ: 

Material 

Features and Benefits 

Drawbacks

Galvanised Steel

  • Very Durable 

  • Highest Longevity 

  • Rust Resistant 

  • Sturdy Locking Options 

  • Heavy. Cause the Post to Lean With Time 

Plastic 

  • Durable 

  • Lightweight

  • Decent Longevity 

  • No Rust or Corrosion Issues. Great For Coastal Locations

  • Easy to Clean 

  • Quick Installation

  • Fades Quickly if Exposed to Sunlight

  • Cracks After Some Years 

  • Weak Locking Options 

Aluminum 

  • Durable

  • Lightweight

  • Rust Free

  • Minimal Maintenance

  • Good Locking Options 

  • Expensive

Size

Besides what mailbox material you prefer, it is vital to consider the types and quantity of mail you get. If you are a frequent online buyer receiving parcels bigger than flat envelopes, don’t go with small or even medium-sized boxes. 

The only case when small to medium-sized mailboxes will prove most feasible is when you just receive bills and letters or big parcels only once in a blue moon. Don’t forget to consider everyone who receives mail at your home when determining the best fit size. 

Here are the four most typical sizes you will come across in the mailbox realm. 

Common Mailbox Sizes 

Size 

How Much Does It Fits 

Small Mailboxes

Up to 399

Generally Accommodates Average Volume Items Including: 

  • Envelopes

  • Bundles Mails 

  • Newspapers 

  • Magazines 

Medium Mailboxes

400 to 999 Cubic Inches 

  • Envelopes

  • Bundles Mails 

  • Newspapers 

  • Magazines 

  • Padded Envelopes

  • Small Parcels 

Large Mailboxes

1000 to 1750 Cubic Inches 

Generally Accommodates Larger Volume Items Including: 

  • Envelopes

  • Bundles Mails 

  • Newspapers 

  • Magazines 

  • Padded Envelopes

  • Small to Medium-Sized Parcels

  • Shoe Boxes 

Extra Large Mailboxes

1750+ Cubic Inches 

Generally Accommodates Very High Volume Items Including: 

  • Envelopes

  • Bundles Mails 

  • Newspapers 

  • Magazines 

  • Padded Envelopes

  • Small to Medium-Sized Parcels

  • Shoe Boxes 

  • Large Bundled Packages

Colour and Design

Selecting the color or design for mailboxes isn’t as easy as you might have perceived. You need to use different principles when choosing how the letterbox should look. Many house owners select black because it easily blends with every type of style the house exterior in the background has got. 

Also, black provides a cleaner and more classy look than any other color. Apart from black, you can also opt for copper-colored mailboxes. The Copper color fits particularly well with homes that carry copper gutters or flashings. 

Moreover, copper tends to provide extended longevity compared to others if exposed to different environmental elements. However, if you are a little more color-match conscious and neither copper nor black seems fitting to you, colors like white, silver, red are popular contenders too. 

Plus, you can always dress the mailbox yourself by simply using paint sprayers at home. This way, you won’t have to compromise on either the durability or looks.   

Lock Mechanism 

This is a crucial factor to consider before buying a mailbox if you are concerned about the theft of sensitive mail. A robust lock feature on your mailbox will safeguard your privacy, especially if you will not be going home for quite some time. 

Even people who don’t frequently go on long trips need to ensure their mail isn’t exposed to theft. Though you can always use a top security camera to look after your home when you are not around, preventive measures are always better. Hence choose locking mailboxes that combine security and aesthetics for maximum peace of mind. 

The Bottom Line 

By now, you might have understood that buying a mailbox is not as straightforward as it may seem. A lot of thought can go into choosing the correct mailbox for a home which is definitely necessary to avoid hefty expenses each year. 

This handy guide provides all the information you need to select the ideal mailbox for your specific requirements and tastes. Hence, do your research before jumping straight into the market so that you do not end up with something that does not suit you well.