Most people only buy a new mailbox once or twice in their life, so you probably don't know as much about buying mailboxes as you do about buying jeans or socks. Thankfully, the process of shopping for a mailbox is not terribly difficult, but there are a few qualities to look for as you shop.
1. Larger Size
Having a larger mailbox is definitely better than having a small mailbox. If you have a small mailbox, you will definitely need to check and empty it every day, which means you'll need to have a friend stop by and get the mail if you go out of town even for a day or two. With a larger, more spacious mailbox, you can forget to check the mail for a day or two without any serious consequences. Your mail carrier will also be able to fit small packages and over-sized envelopes in the box rather than leaving them out in the elements.
2. Secure Latch
There are many different types of mailbox latches, and they are not all equal. Look at each mailbox in person, and make sure that the type of latch it features is secure. One that is hard to hook or tends to open on its own will only result in your mail being exposed to rain, snow, and other precipitation. Nobody likes soggy letters.
3. Aluminum or Wood Construction
You can find mailboxes made from almost anything, from plastic to steel. Each material has its downfalls. Steel tends to be a poor choice since it will eventually rust, and the rust may get on your mail. Plastic is brittle and will break if someone bumps into your mailbox with a bike or on foot. Aluminum is a good choice because it's sturdy enough but won't rust. Wood requires some maintenance — like staining and sealing — but it is very durable and looks lovely as long as you provide this maintenance.
It's important that your mailbox can be personalized. Whether you include your name or just your house number, you need the ability to make it stand out so your mail delivery person knows whose mailbox it is. If the mailbox itself cannot be personalized, you will need to mount your house number or name above or near it — which is harder than just having it printed on the box.
With the tips above, you'll have an easier time finding a mailbox that perfectly suits your needs. Contact companies like GoMailboxes.com for more information.