Does it seem like your hamper is always full and the washing machine is running constantly? You may not be imagining it. The average household washes 50 pounds of laundry a week and 6,000 articles of clothing every year and families with children and pets are at the top of that list. With so much laundry being generated, you may want to consider paying extra attention to the space in the house where their clothing is being cleansed. Laundry room renovations may not top the priority list, but it just might be time to give this room another look.
An organized and efficient laundry room setup makes washing and drying clothes easier and depending on your needs and preferences, laundry room designs can be customized for convenience.
If your appliances are aging, a laundry room renovation can start with an investment in new appliances. New models have large capacity loads, tend to be energy-efficient, and could have innovative features that help fit with your laundry lifestyle. Purchasing front-loading models also can free up design space, as you can install a counter directly above the units, saving room for other items like drying racks.
A laundry room need not be limited to laundry only. Many homeowners make large laundry rooms catch-all spaces that can serve as utility or mudrooms, pantry overflows, or off-season storage areas. Consider the functions you want the room to serve and include those ideas in your designs.
Simple, clean designs can help keep clutter to a minimum. If budget and space permits, cabinetry built into the design will help keep items out of sight. Cabinets hung directly above the appliances can store detergent, bleach, and fabric softener. Use cabinets elsewhere in the room as catch-alls for cleaning supplies used in various other rooms around the house.
Floor space may be at a premium in a laundry room, especially for those who want to devote as much space as possible to bulk-size washer and dryer units. Therefore, utilizing wall space is key. Use shelving, wire racks, hooks, and other organizational tools to store items on the wall. Shelves can be tucked into just about any space, and there are different options that can fit into corners or shallow areas. These are a great option for keeping detergent or other laundry essentials nearby.
Some older laundry room setups have a slop sink to drain discharged water from the washing machine. However, newer homes most likely have plumbing installed directly through the floor or walls. It is still a worthwhile idea to have a sink in the room for rinsing out stains, handwashing items, and having a go-to sink for messier cleanup.
A rod installed between two cabinets or across a narrow width of space in the laundry room is a handy spot to hang shirts or pants to prevent wrinkling. Repurposing a ladder and suspending it from the ceiling also creates a spot to hang clothes.
It’s important to select flooring materials that will not be damaged by contact with moisture or spills. Vinyl, tile, and some composite products often make good laundry room floor materials. Resilient flooring that mimics the look of hardwood adds a classic touch and gives the appearance of wood without having to worry about damage. To alleviate fatigue while spending time folding clothes in the laundry room, invest in a memory foam mat that can be placed underfoot.
Lighting can be important in the laundry room. Rely on task lighting, under-cabinet strip lighting, and overhead lights as needed for efficiency.
This utilitarian space need not be boring or bereft of design elements. Mirror your home’s style in the laundry room, and include wall hangings, plants, and accent items. Play up certain features with a bold floor tile or brightly colored walls.
Updating laundry rooms can be a great way to make doing laundry more enjoyable and efficient.