Tips for Designing a Laundry Space in Your Home
When considering home remodeling, the first spaces that usually get attention are the kitchen and the master bathroom. This makes sense, as these are typically the “big ticket” remodeling items in a home and can have the largest impact on future resale value. However, another space in the home is quickly becoming more and more important to homeowners and buyers—the laundry room. Gone are the days of putting the laundry in the dark, dingy basement; in new construction homes, it is very common to have a designated laundry room on the first or second floor. However, in most older homes, the laundry is stuck in the basement, which makes doing laundry more unpleasant than it has to be. A designated laundry space on the first or second floor of the home is a way to not only add value, but also improve the functionality and livability of the home. Here are some tips for designing a laundry area in your home:
Carve Out Space:
If your laundry is currently in the basement, the first concern is to find a place to relocate it on one of the main levels. This means space will have to be “stolen” from another space in the home. On the first floor, sometimes a portion of a back entry closet, pantry closet, or a first floor bathroom could be used creatively to gain space for the washer and dryer. On the second floor, consider converting a hall closet or taking some space from a rarely used guest room or oversized bathroom. A design-build firm or interior designer can help you figure out creative spaces to relocate the laundry–as long as you are willing to lose some space elsewhere.
Make the Space Functional:
Once space has been designated for the laundry on the first or second floor (and the plumbing has been moved), it would be prudent to make the newly designated space as effective as possible. If space is very tight, consider stacking your washer and dryer to take advantage of vertical space and save hard-to-come-by floor space. Any remaining space should be used for shelving or as a slot for a collapsible ironing board or drying rack.
If you have a bit more space, countertop surfaces for folding items, a closet pole for hanging items on hangers, and a laundry sink will help to make the space incredibly effective. Cubbies for laundry baskets, concealed hampers, and wall-mounted drying racks and ironing boards can also make doing laundry a breeze. Regardless of space, the most important item to upgrade is the lighting—you want to be able to see if you got the stains out!
Make The Space Aesthetically Pleasing:
Let’s face it—doing laundry for most people is never going to be enjoyable. However, doing laundry can be made more pleasant if it is in a visually-pleasing space. Consider a tile floor with a unique pattern for visual interest (and easy cleanability)! Or, add color with a cheerful wallpaper or vibrant backsplash mosaic. Washers and dryers now come in colors besides white—a jazzy red washer/dryer set is an easy way to infuse color in to the space. Even if you only have a small closet to work with, stylish baskets or bright shelves can help make the space more interesting. Use the laundry area as a place to be bolder with your patterns and colors; since the laundry area is usually smaller and more isolated, this is your chance to take a risk and have fun with the design!
Although relocating the laundry takes a careful amount of planning, a trustworthy design-build firm can help you to get the laundry out of the gloomy basement and provide you with a much better laundry experience!