Keeping an organized laundry room is a challenge for anyone, but add in a couple kids and suddenly it can seem impossible. Dirty clothes get mixed with clean ones. Clean loads sit so long, they develop odors. The mess stacks higher and higher every day. What can you do? The good news is, you can fight back against laundry room clutter with a few practical strategies. In fact, with the right organizational system, you might even look forward to doing the laundry!
Stock and Set Up Your Space with Essentials
If all you’ve got in your laundry room is a washer/dryer set, that could be part of your problem. Ideally, you’ll have a laundry basket that allows you to quickly load and unload laundry, counter space for folding clean clothes, a drying rack for items that need to air-dry, and an ironing board if you use one. Consider these the basic building blocks of an organized laundry room.
Consider Space-Saving Appliances
Especially if laundry space is at a premium, space-saving appliances make sense. Washers and dryers come in various models, and small, efficient appliances can fit in closets or other tight spaces, while still providing room for storing laundry supplies. As an added bonus, efficient appliances save energy and utility costs, too.
Even when you’re reorganizing a room to add storage space, you’ll get the most out of your updates when you cut clutter. What should you remove? A good rule of thumb is anything that’s been sitting in your laundry room for more than a year without use needs to go.
Make Use of Walls
That said, if your laundry room is like most people’s, you keep more than dirty clothes and detergent in it. Whether your space doubles as a mud room or has become an unofficial storage space for sports gear, you need smart ways to accommodate everything you keep in the space. Start with the walls: Floating shelves, cabinets, and hooks are all good options for maximizing storage. Place items that get the least amount of use (extra towels, out-of-season décor, etc.) in the hardest-to-reach areas, and keep everyday items (laundry soap, stain sticks, fabric softener) easily accessible.
Start a Laundry Sorting System
When piles of laundry are constantly being dumped on the laundry room floor, disorder takes over everything. To prevent this from happening, create a couple different stations. You might get a few lidded, lined baskets or canvas containers, for example. Then, create a system where laundry always gets sorted as it enters the room. One container may be for lights, another for darks, and the last for colors. Because they have lids, they’re easy to close and instantly make the room look neater, too.
Establish a Routine
Every family has its own laundry rhythms, but you will find clutter a lot easier to manage when you establish a workable routine for managing yours. You might do a load every day or dedicate certain days of the week to towels or sheets or certain members of the household. Getting into some kind of schedule of washing, folding, and putting away clothes will help you make organization more automatic.
Last but not least, don’t underestimate the value of making your laundry room prettier. The aesthetics of a room go a long way towards helping you enjoy being in it, not to mention keep putting effort into maintaining its order. From fresh paint or wallpaper to decorative plants and pictures, find a way to make the room feel a little more attractive, and you may be surprised at what a difference it makes.
Creating an organized, efficient laundry room is about more than keeping the room clean; it can also be a major game changer in your daily stress! Use the tips above to figure out how you’ll set up your space, and do yourself the favor of making laundry less of a chore.
Tom Happ is President of Closet Works, the parent company of CLOSETS.COM. Happ and his team of more than 100 employees use their vast experience in the closet and organization industry to design, manufacture and deliver custom storage solutions to homeowners throughout North America.