With laundry being a never-ending part of home management, laundry room remodels have become increasingly popular. If you’re considering one of these makeovers, use the ideas below to create an organized and useful space that’s both visually appealing and highly functional.
When remodeling your laundry room, assess the current layout to see if it needs improvement. The goal is to design a space that allows you to work as efficiently as possible and requires minimal maintenance. Ask yourself the following questions before starting:
• Where can you save space? Could you stack your washer and dryer or install a wall-mounted ironing board that can be folded up when not in use?
• Where could you place cabinets or shelving so that supplies are easily accessible?
• Will having a work surface or counter help you perform tasks such as folding clothes more quickly?
Once you’ve considered the overall layout, you’ll want to be sure to address these key components of a well-designed laundry room.
Washers and Dryers
This is probably the first place most people will turn to when undertaking a laundry room makeover. If you’re in the market for a new washing machine or dryer, the newest generation of these appliances has a lot to offer in both attractive designs and high-tech features. Be sure to look for the following elements when shopping around:
• Tub capacity – This is especially important if you frequently have large loads to wash, as a higher capacity reduces the number of loads you need to do. Consumer Reports favorably rates the Samsung WF56H9110CW washer and DV56H9100EW dryer, which pair larger-than-usual-capacity with a "SuperSpeed" option that cuts down on cycle time.
• Preset and programmable cycles – More wash cycles and temperature settings will allow you to clean clothes with different care requirements. If you have a lot of hand-washables, a machine with a hand-wash setting can save you a significant amount of time.
• Energy and water efficiency – Though energy and water-efficient washers and dryers are more expensive at the outset, you’ll save on utility bills in the long run and conserve natural resources.
You’ll also want to decide between front-loaders and top-loaders. The main drawback to front-loaders is that they’re usually more expensive. However, they’re more efficient in that they conserve energy and have greater capacity. Front-loaders also provide more flexibility in design options:
Brands like GE® provide top-notch features that really increase the efficiency of the laundry room, including energy efficiency. They provide all the features above plus an app that lets you monitor your laundry through the washing and drying cycles. The GE® Energy Star® GFWR4805FRR features an overnight cycle that not only washes your clothes, but will gently tumble them overnight to keep you from having to use your dryer. Plus, it comes a great surface for folding clothes and a built-in pedestal that provides the convenience of not having to constantly bend too far down. Those are great features!
Counter space is vital for organization and provides a convenient place to fold laundry. For smaller spaces, you can have a counter added to the top of front-loading washers and dryers. For larger spaces, an island provides additional counter space and lends a homey feel.
Storage for Supplies
If you prefer your supplies to be out of sight, invest in cabinets and have them installed where you can quickly access items. If you don’t mind having objects out in the open, shelves are sufficient for storage. Consider plastic-coated wire shelving, which doubles as a clothing rack and eliminates the need for drying racks that take up floor space.
A fresh coat of paint is one of the easiest and most inexpensive ways to update and transform the look and feel of any space, and the laundry room is no exception. Choose a bright, uplifting color scheme that makes you feel good even when you’re in the middle of laundry-related chores. Use an easy-to-clean semi-gloss paint for durability.
Good lighting is critical for any work area and will also brighten the appearance of your room. Add under-cabinet lighting, a large overhead fixture or both, depending on your space and needs.
Don’t Forget to Decorate
Just because your laundry room is a space dedicated to chores doesn't mean you can't decorate it by hanging up some pictures and accessorizing the space with fun colors or patterns. While it may not be the room you entertain or relax in, it should still be an environment you enjoy.
Whatever size your laundry room is, you can achieve a beautiful and functional design that will save you time, freeing you up to do other things.
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