Easy Organizing Tips for Your Laundry Room

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Doing laundry is a chore, but having to wash and fold laundry in a chaotic, cluttered space can turn a chore into a daily torture. The key to a good laundry room is organizing the space to your needs and maximizing the space that you have. The laundry room is often a high-traffic and cramped area, but there is no reason why it can't be perfectly functional as well.

Taking Advantage of Space

It's easy to turn the laundry room into a storage area, and because of its small size, even a little clutter can make it impossible to work in. A husband may think it's the perfect place to store his neon beer sign until the bar gets built, or he may turn it into his impromptu hobby workshop. These little things add up quickly.

Take a look at the laundry space and determine what belongs and what doesn't. Clear out the boxes, old empty detergent bottles and anything else that has been haphazardly placed in the room. This will open space and make it easier to do the laundry. Think about a stackable washer and dryer if you have high ceilings. That opens up a whole area for a portable table, which can be used for folding laundry or even additional storage.

With the laundry room clear of clutter, organize what's left, maximizing space but also allowing for easy accessibility if needed. For example, bottles of detergent, fabric softener and stain remover can be placed in cabinets, so they are not just sitting on top of the laundry machine. They are still easy to get to, but are out of sight.

Some clothes are too delicate for the dryer, so place a retractable clothesline in the laundry room. When delicate clothes need to be dried, pull it out until the clothes are done and then just retract it back to the wall when it's unneeded. This a great space saver, and keeps people from having to go to a different place to hang clothing.

Double Duty Means Double Efficiency

Since laundry rooms have a water hookup, many have a sink, as well. This can be handy sometimes, but sinks aren't used that often in laundry rooms. Place a piece of plywood over the sink, and then you have a whole new area to fold the laundry. If you need the sink itself, then simply lift the plywood and set it on the ground. The same goes for the ironing board. Ironing boards that are set into walls can be pulled down and used for additional folding space in a pinch. In general, any flat surface should be considered fair game as a folding table.

Clothes Organization

Everyone has it at one point or another: that giant pile of laundry shoved into the corner of the room, putting a strain on the hamper. This is challenging when sorting through laundry, because it takes extra time to separate the lights from the darks and the cold-water washables from the warm-water ones.

Instead of forming the giant laundry pile of doom, set up several hampers or clothes baskets on the floor and designate each one for a specific type of clothing. The easiest is three hampers: one for lights, one for darks and another for reds. If there is room, then separate the clothes even further.

Somewhere, in the void of space or some alternate universe, there is a pile of single socks that have passed through the laundry gateway, leaving mismatched collections in your laundry room. Instead of throwing them to the side or leaving the mismatched pile on top of the dryer, get a small basket to place them into. Place the basket next to the sorting hampers, so if you find a stray sock, then you can quickly check for its mate; if it isn't found, then add it to the pile.

A Clean Laundry Room Is a Happy Laundry Room

Laundry rooms can quickly become dirty places. The clothes are often filthy and covered in dirt, mud and food. Dryers collect lint like a magnet, and soon, it can take over walls and countertops. Detergent spills on the floor, and countless other problems can make the laundry room a mess, keeping people from doing the laundry as often as they should and just generally adding stress.

Sweep and mop the floors of the laundry room about once a month, more during rainy months. Mud gets tracked in or dropped from clothes. A quick sweep and mop of the floor can keep the dirt and other material from piling up. Also, dusting the tops of the washer and dryer and other surfaces will eliminate the fuzzy remnants of clothing. A floor duster that can get under the washer and dryer is also a good investment to keep lint from accumulating under the appliances.

While it may not seem like it now, walking into a clean laundry room really does make it easier to get laundry done. Rather than focusing on how dirty the room is, you can put all your energy toward cleaning those clothes.

Last Updated: July 22, 2011
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About Brock Cooper Brock Cooper is a freelance writer for IdealHomeGarden.com. 

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