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A mini makeover...we have a new mailbox!

Updated: Nov 9, 2022

This may seem trivial, but I am so stoked to enter this enamel-laden piece of beauty into our house files.

What was here when we arrived? A dark, old, classic mailbox that had seen far better days, had begun to wobble its way out of the ground, AND housed a very friendly (albeit quite large) spider. This mailbox was literally trying to escape itself every time rain fell from the sky, so I am happy to release it into mailbox heaven where it may rest forever. Note: no spiders were harmed in the exorcism of this mailbox.

Beyond the outer-beauty-makeover, here are some of the questions we asked (and answered) and highlights of what we learned along the way:

  1. We bought the pretty new mailbox on amazon using points from previous purchases!

  2. We were initially going to do the job ourselves but decided to hire someone.

  3. Who do you hire for this kind of job? A handyman.

  4. What if you don’t have a handyman? Ask the nextdoor app (or real-live neighbors) for recommendations

  5. Why didn’t you do it yourself? We had every intention to, but after checking the costs of cement and the tools we’d potentially need to get the job done/fix any issues that could arise, and factoring in those risks (i.e. do I lay the cement with the bolts in it / how would we fix it if they shift? (they did, btw), how do we get the old mailbox out not knowing if it’s just a pillar in the ground or cement? etc. etc.), we decided to hire a handyman who did everything for us, including the inevitable troubleshooting, as well as provided all the tools and materials for $200.

  6. If I want to do it myself, what should I keep in mind? Definitely check the USPS regulations for installing a mailbox.

  7. Important to note: in our county, we discovered that if you are digging any more than 24” into the ground, you will need to alert the town first and have a utility check done before proceeding.

Finally, I decided to do a little landscaping around the post to cover the cement slab by grabbing some cute mini fence pieces and chipped marble from our cherished second home, Home Depot.

Et voila!

I can’t wait to adorn this baby with holiday greens and a BIG RED BOW…and maybe even a bell…. GUSH

The Nitty Gritty...

How long did it take? ~3-4 hrs over a span of a few days (to allow the cement to dry)

  • Research aside, just a couple clicks on Amazon and the nextdoor to locate the mailbox and a handyman

  • It took the handyman 2 trips (1 to lay the cement and another to fix the bolts, place the mailbox, and remove the old one)

  • 15 minutes at Home Depot and less than 5 to lay down the fence and rocks

How much did it cost? ~$550

Note: this project technically only cost us ~$250 since we splurged on the mailbox using points.

  • Mailbox (~$300 but there are definitely cheaper ones!)

  • labor and supplies (~$200)

  • chipped marble (~$5 per bag) - I only needed one

  • mini fence pieces ($20 for 4)

  • house number stickers ($4)

  • bolts (varies) - ours did not come with them!

You could further reduce the cost by doing this yourself, but you’d need to factor in a few additional costs, mainly:

  • shovel (varies)

  • 2+ bags of concrete (~$10) plus something to mix it in

  • a drill and a masonry drill bit (varies) OR an auger (varies) /post hole digger ($50) if you’re only installing a post mailbox

  • a rubber mallet

If you already have many of these items, try it yourself! Just do it before the ground freezes! ;D

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