Tips for finding the right mailbox

Mailboxes are a necessary part of home ownership. People with a unique sense of flair will be pleased to learn that residential and rural mailboxes don't have to be plain and boring, as there are many different standard and custom styles to choose from.

Brick Mailboxes

Brick mailboxes bring front yards to life. These mailboxes are built rather than store-bought, and they have more permanence as part of your home than do simpler installations. To build a custom brick mailbox, all you need is some basic masonry knowledge and the right tools.

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Custom Mailboxes

Novelty mailboxes are truly a way for homeowners to showcase their individuality. These custom mailboxes can be made of wood, aluminum or steel, and can take on just about any shape, from animals and houses to cartoon characters, trees and bugs. Decorative mailboxes come in all kinds of vibrant colors, or you can hand-paint them however you like and place them at your gates or front door.

Some subdivisions like to maintain a uniform appearance throughout the community, so they have homeowners associations that regulate what can and cannot be placed outside of your home. If you live in one of these neighborhoods, check with local authorities before erecting a novelty mailbox in your yard.

Locking Mailboxes

Crime is real, and thieves have no qualms about swiping the mail right out of your mailbox. Criminals use your personal information to apply for credit cards, cash your checks and steal your identity. So if you aren't home to retrieve your mail immediately after the mailman arrives, consider investing in a locking mailbox.

Locked mailbox choices are endless. But not all locked home mailboxes provide the kind of security you expect. A quality locked mailbox can set you back a few hundred bucks. Before you purchase this type of mailbox, make sure it is weatherproof and approved by the Postmaster General.

Mailboxes are not limited to the traditional bland box-and-pole styles of yesteryear; you have options. Add value to your home by building a beautiful brick mailbox. Bring out your unique personality with a custom mailbox, or invest in your security with a quality locked mailbox. The choice is yours.