Second only to the kitchen, the utility/laundry room needs to be the most functional area in the home. When you’re planning a home renovation, the attention you put into designing the space will help you immeasurably once it’s completed.
Not only will laundry be simpler and space exist for organizing cleaning appliances and products, but your home will have greater value when you sell it. The money you put into it may not eventually translate to a higher selling price, but it may have a competitive advantage over others nearby, helping it sell faster.
Consider including the following features as space allows:
- Install a sink big enough to wash out sweaters and other delicate or for soaking big items. Choose a fixture with a sprayer to add functionality.
- The washer and dryer should be adjacent to each other to make loading the dryer easier. If it’s possible, put the dryer on a raised platform to make it easier to put the clothes in and take them out.
- Although it won’t be most commonly used feature in the laundry area, design an ironing center close by. A closet to store the ironing board or a built-in board stored in a wall cabinet is a practical design touch. Install a cabinet to keep the iron, spray starch and distilled water nearby.
- Add considerable convenience by placing an exterior door in the laundry room. It’ll be easier to shake rugs out before washing them, and the door transforms the room into a mud room as well.
- Use windows and/or skylights. The more natural daylight the room has, the better. In lieu of daylight, use plenty of overhead and task lighting.
- Set aside enough linear space for folding laundry. It’s also helpful to have a rod or hook nearby to hang clean clothes.
- Install plenty of electrical outlets throughout the laundry room, and include enough at countertop height. Besides plugging in an iron, some people might use the utility room as a hobby space and need to plug in tools.
- Consider under cabinet lighting. Busy people do their housework and laundry at night. Install a section near the dryer, which would be a logical place to fold clothing.
- Include outlets for a gas and electric dryer. The cost of installing hookups for dryers in a home renovation is small compared to having to run a gas line to the dryer’s location or put in a 220-volt outlet for an electric dryer. You’ll still need a 120-volt outlet for a gas dryer.
- If it’s a reasonable distance to the outdoors, consider installing an alternative drain line for the washing machine. Some people like to reuse the wash water to water their landscapes. Safe detergents are available that won’t harm plants or animal life. Considering that a family of four using a standard washer uses 12,000 gallons per year, the option to use the laundry water for the garden makes environmental and economic sense.
Planning to upgrade or create a utility room during a home renovation gives you a chance to make your home more livable and convenient. Alair Homes offers these design and construction ideas to help you achieve a highly functional and enjoyable work space. Contact us to explore more great ideas.