13 Common Laundry Mistakes You Might Be Making

The modern-day laundry process has come a long way from the days when hand scrubbing and using washboards and clothes wringers made it much more of a time-consuming, physically demanding task.

But let’s face it, even with the conveniences of today’s smart, high-tech appliances and more efficient laundry cleaning products, doing the laundry is still one of our least favourite home chores.

It doesn’t help when common laundry mistakes cause problems that can damage your clothing, add extra time to the laundry process, and even make your home less safe.

common laundry mistakes

Avoid these common laundry mistakes

The average time to wash and dry a load of clothes is about 90-100 minutes (using normal wash and dry cycles).

That doesn’t even include the time it takes to collect and sort dirty clothes, nor the time required to re-sort, iron, fold, and put away your laundered clothing. The average family does approximately seven loads of laundry per week, which works out to over 400 laundry loads annually.

It’s no wonder that doing the laundry is the most time-consuming household task after cooking!

So how can you streamline the process and avoid making the types of laundry mistakes that can waste your time and shorten the life of both your clothing and laundry appliances?

We’ve chosen some of the most common bad laundry habits and explain how to go about doing your laundry the right way.

1. Using too much detergent

woman pouring laundry detergent into washer

Photo by Rodnae Productions from Pexels

Overusing detergent is one of the most common laundry mistakes. Doing so doesn’t get your clothes any cleaner, however – it only creates problems.

Adding too much detergent to a washer load (whether it’s with a liquid detergent dispenser or using pods) generates more suds than you need.

That makes your clothes harder to rinse and can leave detergent residue or excess dirt and bacteria on them. A washer that can’t drain as efficiently because it has too many suds also has to work harder and can harbour more bacteria.

Using a regular laundry detergent in a high-efficiency washer that should be using a high-efficiency detergent (which you use less of compared to traditional detergents) will generate too many suds as well.

The washer manufacturer’s recommendation for how much detergent to use shouldn’t necessarily be taken as gospel, either.

Try cutting back your liquid detergent use per washer load to three-quarters of what is recommended and see if you’re satisfied with how your clothes are coming out at the end of the wash cycle.

2. Not regularly cleaning the dryer lint trap and vent

Dryer fires caused by lint buildup cause hundreds of fires across Canada every year. Consumer Reports says that dryer fires are much more likely to be caused by lint buildup that is ignored than electrical malfunctions.

Another reason to avoid having significant lint buildup in the dryer and its ductwork and vents is that it extends your drying times. That uses up more energy because the appliance can’t run as efficiently as it should, makes doing the laundry take longer, and shortens the life of a dryer.

To correct one of the most common laundry mistakes and avoid any lint-related issues, be proactive and follow these guidelines:

  • clean your lint trap after every load
  • check your exterior dryer vent for lint buildup a couple of times per year
  • occasionally check behind and underneath your dryer for loose lint
  • disconnect your dryer vent hose and vacuum inside of it twice a year
  • have your dryer ductwork cleaned every couple of years by a professional

3. Having a laundry room that lacks functionality

laundry room with pullout shelves

Remodel your laundry room for an optimal level of functionality by adding custom cabinetry with pullouts.

Considering how much time you spend doing laundry every year, it’s a wise investment to upgrade your laundry room to improve its functionality.

There’s a lot you can do with the room to give it more usefulness, which helps to streamline the laundry process. Here are a few laundry room upgrade ideas:

  • maximize the room’s storage space with custom cabinetry that holds all of your laundry supplies
  • add built-in laundry hampers to keep the room more organized and cut down on the time it takes to sort dirty clothes
  • create more usable workspace for folding and sorting laundry with new countertops
  • install convenient laundry helpers like a pullout ironing board, pullout drying drawers, and retractable valet rods
  • add or upgrade your laundry sink and faucet
  • if your laundry room has the space, install an island that provides an extra work surface and additional storage room

4. Treating stains incorrectly

Stained clothing needs to be dealt with sooner rather than later in order to avoid having a stain set in to the point where eliminating it becomes unnecessarily difficult.

To treat clothing stains effectively, first check the clothing’s label for any guidelines for dealing with stains. There are a few variables involved with treating stains, including what type of clothing you’re dealing with and the liquid or item that caused the stain itself.

A laundry stain remover spray or regular detergent can be used to treat the stain and a number of stain removal remedies using household items can also work.

If a stain removal product isn’t readily available, try submerging the stained part of the clothing in cold water or gently blot the stain with water to keep it from drying before you can deal with it further.

Another tip is to gently dab the stain and avoid scrubbing it too vigorously, which can cause the stain to spread and wear down the fabric.

5. Doing partial laundry loads or loads that are too big

It’s not energy-efficient to only do partial loads of laundry, even with a washing machine that has a setting that lets you adjust the washer’s water level.

Washing machines account for approximately a fifth of the water usage in the average home. A partial washer load with a lower water level will use up almost as much electricity as a full load, too.

Another of the laundry mistakes we make is overstuffing the washer and dryer. Hey, we’ve all had items overflowing from the top of a washer or had to use a little extra muscle to shut that dryer door because the drum was so full.

Here’s exactly why shouldn’t overload your laundry appliances:

  • a beyond-capacity load of clothes in a washer will be packed too tightly together and won’t get evenly cleaned
  • an overloaded dryer won’t dry all of your things as efficiently
  • laundry appliances have weight capacities and you can wear them out prematurely with excessively heavy loads

6. Using dryer sheets instead of dryer balls

Dryer sheets will get your clothes smelling more fragrant, but that highlights one of their negatives – they’re loaded with toxic chemicals that produce that pleasant smell and help them do their other jobs of softening clothes and reducing static.

In addition to the fact that they’re not exactly great for your health, dryer sheets are also less eco-friendly compared to dryer balls.

Most types of dryer sheets are used once and thrown away, their chemicals get released into the atmosphere via your dryer vent, and they don’t separate your clothes as well as dryer balls, which extends drying times.

Dryer balls are a little more cost-effective since they’re reusable and contain little or no chemicals. Another of the advantages dryer balls have over dryer sheets is that they produce less lint that sticks to clothes and ends up in the dryer’s lint screen. Over time, the dryer sheets’ coating tends to leave a thin residue that builds up on the lint trap as well.

7. Not delegating laundry duties

Running a household is hard work and every contribution to keep the home functioning smoothly helps. Therefore, don’t hesitate to delegate laundry duties to (literally) lighten your load.

If your kids are old enough to handle using a washer and dryer, there’s no reason they shouldn’t be helping out once in awhile with the home’s laundry tasks.

Getting them involved in weekly laundry duties teaches kids how to be more responsible. And their dirty clothes are contributing to the workload, so it makes even more sense for them to bear some of the work burden.

Even young kids who aren’t old enough to use laundry appliances yet are capable of putting their clean clothes away in their room when given the proper directions.

8. Using the wrong washer and dryer settings

laundry mistakes washer settings

Take the time to full understand which appliance settings will work most efficiently. (Photo by Rodnae Productions from Pexels)

Perhaps you have recently bought a new washer and/or dryer. If you used the same laundry appliances for years, it’s easy to just apply the same methodology you’re familiar with to your new machines. This is one of the types of laundry mistakes that is easy to avoid.

Chances are, you’ll need to make some sort of adjustment with the new appliances. Modern washers and dryers offer more settings and washing options than older models.

If you’re the type who never looks at the instruction manual of the products you buy, you’ll want to take a few minutes to read the user guides for your new washer and dryer.

There is sure to be at least one piece of useful information in them you’ll find useful, whether it’s something related to their maintenance or a simple operating tip you’ve been ignoring.

One more tip is to use less hot water for your wash cycles unless you’re cleaning items that typically harbour more bacteria like bath, hand, and dish towels, underwear, and sweaty clothing.

Cold water will do the job fine in most cases and is easier on your fabrics. It’s cheaper to use as well, since heating the water accounts for as much as 90% of a washer’s energy consumption.

9. Using outdated laundry appliances

Using laundry appliances you bought 20+ years ago will naturally consume more electricity compared to a newer washer or dryer model that is designated with the familiar Energy Star logo.

Newer washers will also use less water than old washers and front-loading washers operate more efficiently than top-loading washers. High-efficiency washers that are very energy-efficient and use less detergent are becoming more popular with homeowners.

One of the most attractive reasons to upgrade your laundry appliances is the wide variety of convenient features they offer, especially smart washers and dryers.

Higher-end modern laundry appliances include helpful features like:

  • moisture sensors to prevent overdrying
  • AI technology to determine the best settings for washing or drying clothes
  • load capacity sensors
  • notifications that can be sent to your smartphone to alert you when a wash or dry cycle is done
  • a powerful steam cycle to eliminate common household allergens

10. Leaving buttons buttoned and zippers unzipped

One of the more common laundry mistakes that can damage your shirts is to leave them buttoned up when they’re being washed or dried.

If shirts are left buttoned up, all of that tumbling around inside the appliances puts stress on the buttons and buttonholes that can cause threads to loosen and buttons to fall off.

Leaving the zippers on pants or other types of clothing unzipped is another mistake to avoid. The metal teeth of a zipper can easily catch on another piece of clothing and cause damage, particularly with delicate fabrics.

11. Ignoring the decor of your laundry room

modern laundry room

A few hundred hours can be spent in the laundry room over the course of a year. Why not make it look nicer?

We’ve covered the benefits of improving your laundry room’s functionality. Why not pay some attention to upgrading the room’s appearance, too?

“Stylish décor” isn’t something many of us associate with a laundry room – but why not? There’s no reason to pay any less attention to a laundry room’s look than you would to any other room in your home.

When you consider just how much time you’ll spend in the laundry room over the course of a year, that should be even more incentive to make it look and feel more inviting.

To freshen up the room’s décor, give the walls and ceiling a fresh coat of paint or add wallpaper with a high humidity tolerance. Brighter lighting, new flooring, a rug, some wall art, and some plants (if the room gets enough sunlight) will get you that much closer to creating a comfortable laundry space.

High-quality custom cabinetry will allow you to choose stylish decorative hardware and appealing finishes that complete your décor upgrade.

12. Not cleaning your washing machine

It might not seem like it needs it, but that appliance that gets your clothes clean occasionally needs to be cleaned itself. Not all of the bacteria from the loads of dirty clothes and linens that you wash just disappears with the drained laundry water.

If you have an old washing machine or wash in cold water 100% of the time, your appliance will likely be even more susceptible to bacteria buildup. A telltale sign that your washer needs a cleaning is that it will have an unpleasant odour that is being caused by a buildup of mould and mildew.

To eliminate washing machine bacteria (as well as the buildup from dirt and detergent), it’s a good idea to run a cleaning cycle with no clothes in the machine using hot water and bleach (or a bleach alternative) on a monthly basis.

Samsung recommends keeping a washing machine’s door and detergent drawer open after using it to prevent mould and mildew from forming.

13. Washing jeans the wrong way

Photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels

Denim may be one of the most rugged types of fabrics we wear, but washing and drying jeans the wrong way is one of the laundry mistakes that can cause your favourite pair of pants to fall apart prematurely.

People commonly wash their jeans using their washer’s heavy-duty setting because they think denim requires it. Unless the care label on the jeans says so, however, this is unnecessary and only putting more stress on the pants. Jeans don’t require anything higher than a medium or low setting for the dryer, either.

How often you wash your jeans is a personal choice. As long as a pair of jeans smells fine and looks presentable, that’s good enough for a lot of people. If you prefer to be a little more proactive with keeping your jeans clean, Good Housekeeping magazine’s product testers recommend washing jeans every three or four wears.

A jean washing tip you might not know is that they should always be turned inside out when being washed and dried. It’s gentler on the outer fibres of the pants and slows down the fading process.

Transform your laundry room

These best practices can correct some of the most common laundry mistakes we make and help to save you some time and frustration when doing your laundry.

If it’s time for your outdated laundry room to get some special attention to make it more functional and modern-looking, Organized Interiors is the design professional to trust.

Schedule a complimentary design consultation with us to begin planning your laundry room transformation.

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See also:

9 Common Laundry Room Problems & How to Fix Them

When we talk about the practice of washing and drying our clothes, most people refer to it as “doing the laundry”, being on “laundry duty”, or taking care of your “laundry chores”.

None of those descriptions exactly demonstrate a very enthusiastic attitude towards doing the laundry once or twice a week, do they?

While tackling any home chore is a necessity and not exactly the ideal way you’d prefer to be spending your free time, various common laundry room problems can make you really want to put off your laundry tasks for as long as possible.

 woman carrying linens past washer and dryer

We’re not talking about laundry problems like how to get your clothes whiter, softer, less staticky, or whether or not you’re using too much detergent.

No, we’re talking about common laundry room problems that make this space:

  • dreary and unwelcoming
  • functionally inadequate
  • prone to storage and clutter issues
  • a safety concern for parents

Things don’t have to be this way when it comes to your laundry room, however.

Do these laundry room problems affect you?

Although the laundry room has traditionally been overlooked as an area that’s home improvement project-worthy, homeowners have started to change their attitude about it in recent years.

Laundry rooms in many houses are being transformed into spaces that, in some cases, are downright swanky. A laundry room remodel enables this part of your home to complement the existing décor of your living space.

According to a National Association of Home Builders’ 2019 report, the laundry room was named as the most essential home feature for homebuyers.

It only makes sense that an increasing number of homeowners are coming around to the realization that it’s time to pay more attention to how their laundry rooms look and function.

After all, we spend a lot of time in the laundry room. The average American family does about eight loads of laundry per week. That can add up to a few hundred hours being spent in the laundry room annually for some families.

If you’re vexed by any of the common laundry room problems listed here, find out what solutions work best in order to make your laundry room easier to use and more comfortable to spend time in.

1. Your laundry room is dreary

Perhaps the biggest reason we procrastinate on laundry chores is due to the fact that most laundry rooms are dark, dreary spaces that lack any type of appealing décor.

Homeowners would probably describe their laundry room as something that’s utilitarian, which Merriam Webster defines as something that’s “made to be useful rather than to be decorative or comfortable”.

Despite this widespread perception, Organized Interiors has proven time and time again with our many laundry room makeovers that both functionality and stylish décor can, in fact, work in perfect harmony.

A makeover can add a decorative flair and warmth to a laundry room with:

  • beautiful custom cabinetry and countertop finishes
  • decorative cabinetry hardware
  • a fresh coat of wall and ceiling paint
  • backsplash tiles to add more aesthetic appeal to the room
  • a colour scheme that blends nicely with your home’s décor
  • laundry tub and faucet upgrades

Adding finishing touches to a laundry room remodel with improved lighting, artwork, a stylish rug, or plants (if the room gets natural light), will also liven up the space and make it more inviting and pleasant to spend time in.

2. There isn’t enough laundry room storage space

One of the most common laundry room problems is having insufficient storage space for your laundry supplies.

All of those detergent, stain remover, fabric softener, bleach, and spray starch containers can get disorganized without an adequate storage and organization system.

Then there’s all of the additional laundry helpers we use, such as laundry boosters, dryer sheets, clothes pins, laundry pods, and ironing supplies.

So what’s the best solution to store everything tidily? Have your room remodelled to include enough custom cabinetry to hold everything you use for your laundry chores (and then some).

Custom cabinets look much nicer than DIY shelving, repurposed kitchen cupboards, or prefab big box store cabinetry. Customizing also allows you to create a design aesthetic that aligns with your style tastes and home décor.

They’ll also maximize your laundry room’s storage space and allow you to adjust shelving in order to fit the different sizes of laundry supplies that need storing.

Open shelving and pullout shelves can also be used to accommodate all of your laundry room storage needs.

You can even squeeze a little more storage space out of your laundry room by using pedestals with drawer storage for your washer and dryer.

bright laundry room with gray cabinets

Having plenty of cabinets in the laundry room eliminates storage issues. Attractive countertops and cabinet finishes add a decorative flair to a typically dreary home space.

3. The laundry room is too small

Another common issue with laundry rooms is their small size, particularly in older homes. Smaller laundry rooms can make it more difficult to get your laundry duties done in a timely manner.

Here’s a couple of examples: a small laundry room doesn’t have an adequate amount of space for a folding area, necessitating you to move your freshly dried clothes to another room for folding.

Perhaps the laundry room is so cramped that even sorting clothes before washing or after drying them is a headache, which also requires you to do this elsewhere.

While a smaller laundry room does present more of a challenge when it comes to your laundry task efficiency, there are ways to get the most out of your limited space.

Leveraging the expertise of a professional who can add smartly located storage and extra features for an optimal level of functionality will improve your experience using a small laundry room.

Stackable washers and dryers can also be used to save space.

4. Keeping children out of the laundry room is a challenge

If you have young kids, getting them involved in supervised laundry tasks is a great way to teach them responsibility and the pride that comes with contributing to the household chores.

The American Cleaning Institute represents the U.S. cleaning products industry and released stats related to children and laundry:

  • 50% of parents do their laundry while their kids are also in the laundry room
  • 67% of parents of children under the age of four said their children have laundry room access
  • 46% of parents get their children to help them sort and prepare clothes for the wash

If the laundry room isn’t being used or if it is and an adult isn’t present, keeping them out of the room can be a concern for parents due to the various potential safety risks that exist.

Children love getting into small spaces, which makes washers, dryers, pullout laundry hampers, and cupboards dangerous to your little ones.

If necessary, purchase locks for your appliances, especially for more accessible front-loading washers and dryers. And naturally, you could just keep the laundry room locked for some extra peace of mind.

Even if you are working in the laundry room with your kids, it’s easy to get distracted with one of your laundry tasks or something else going on in the house. Always stay vigilant when your children are in the laundry room!

5. Laundry supplies are difficult to store safely

detergent podsOne of the other obvious safety issues with laundry rooms if you have youngsters or pets are the hazardous chemicals in your laundry products.

Most laundry detergent pods are round and colourful, which curious children may mistake for toys or candy. Keeping them out of sight and out of reach is children is even more important because laundry pods are more toxic than traditional detergents.

Between 2012 and 2017, Global News reports that American poison control centres received almost 73,000 calls related to laundry pod ingestion incidents involving mostly kids under the age of six.

Even if you do put a lock on the laundry room door, it might be wise to keep all your dangerous laundry supplies locked behind your cabinetry doors, ideally higher up. And make sure your kids are taught about the safety risks of your laundry and cleaning products.

It’s advisable to have the number of your local poison control centre easily visible in the laundry room or in your phone. If there is an accident, consult the laundry product label for first aid instructions.

Some people prefer to transfer their laundry products to jars or other storage containers. If you do this, be sure to keep everything labelled and retain the packaging or labels of products being decanted. That way, you’ll have a reference for the product in case there’s an emergency.

6. The laundry room is a dumping ground

Laundry rooms are busy spaces, so keeping them organized and free of clutter isn’t easy.

Between piles of dirty clothes being deposited in the room, clothing items in need of repair, all of your laundry products, and accumulating those miscellaneous items that pulled out of pockets before a wash, things can get untidy fast.

Outfit your laundry room with enough storage and counter space so that everything has a place, which simplifies and expedites your organization efforts.

Built-in hampers are incredibly useful for keeping your laundry room organized. Getting everyone in the family to separate their own dirty clothing into the appropriate hamper will save whoever takes care of most of the laundry tasks lots of time.

Hampers can also be installed in your bedroom custom cabinetry to keep dirty clothes organized. Organized Interiors’ hampers conveniently come with pullout liners with handles for easy transportation.

Use baskets or dedicated cabinet or cubby spaces for all of those small odds and ends that can accumulate in the laundry room, like single socks and forgotten items left in pockets. That will keep surfaces like the top of your washer and dryer, folding counter, and counter space around the sink clutter-free.

laundry room problems open hampers

7. Multi-tasking while doing laundry is tricky

There’s a lot of waiting time involved with doing the laundry, so you probably multi-task while the washer and dryer are running.

This can include doing things like cooking, washing the dishes, vacuuming, helping your kids with homework, or supervising young children.

In bigger homes, the laundry room’s location can play a big part in how convenient it is to multi-task while taking care of the laundry.

Moving your laundry room’s location from, say, the basement to a more centralized part of the home to help make this easier for you isn’t usually a simple or inexpensive solution.

Relocating your laundry room to a space close to your existing plumbing which also allows for dryer venting is obviously imperative.

You’ll also need to take the noise a washer and dryer can make while running into account, especially if you’re thinking of relocating close to any bedrooms.

We previously mentioned how much homebuyers value a good laundry room and a well-located laundry room (on a main floor, preferably beside the kitchen) is especially coveted by buyers.

8. The laundry room lacks functionality

If a laundry room merely holds your washer and dryer, allows for a small amount of storage, and has a barely adequate-sized folding and sorting area, this lack of functionality only makes laundry work tougher to do.

In addition to more cabinet storage and built-in laundry hampers, there are other ways to enhance the room’s functionality, such as adding:

  • a space-saving pullout ironing board
  • undercabinet task lighting
  • a dedicated area for sewing and garment repairs
  • an island for extra counter space and storage
  • hanging rods and valet rods for more hanging space
  • a pullout drawer that functions as a drying rack

With the right setup and enough space, a laundry room can double as a go-to home storage space where luggage, seasonal clothing, and cleaning supplies are kept.

If it’s located near an entrance, a laundry room-mudroom combo is another idea to consider. Mudrooms function as a very useful transitional area between the outdoors and the rest of your home. They can help keep your front hallway tidier and cleaner.

laundry room problems counter hamper ironing board

Add extra functionality to a laundry room with hanging rods, task lighting, and space-savers like a pullout ironing board, drying rack, and hampers.

9. The laundry room gets too hot

So you’ve remodelled your laundry room with some of the aforementioned upgrades. While the room is a lot more pleasant to use, you find that it always gets too hot whenever the dryer is running. What’s up with that?

There are several factors that can cause the laundry room to get uncomfortably warm or hot once the dryer is operating.

The first thing to check is your dryer’s lint screen, which should be cleaned after every use. A clogged lint screen poses a fire hazard, makes the dryer work harder (which creates more heat in a room), can cause clothes to not fully dry, and adds to a laundry room’s humidity level.

Also check the dryer’s vent tube (that white or aluminum-looking flexible tube behind the appliance). Make sure it’s not damaged and properly attached to the dryer and outdoor exhaust vent.

The dryer duct, along with the rest of your home’s ducts, should be periodically cleaned by a professional to ensure no blockages occur.

And finally, check your outdoor lint trap occasionally and eliminate any lint build-up. This is something many people don’t do and it can create a major fire risk if it’s ignored long enough.

Rely on a pro to solve your laundry room problems

If you’re experiencing any of these laundry room problems, don’t just adapt to them. Take action now to improve one of the hardest working rooms in your home.

Organized Interiors can provide solutions to many of the laundry room problems you’re dealing with. All you need to do is to get a dialogue started with us by scheduling a free in-home design consultation.

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7 Laundry Room Organization Ideas You Should Be Using

Amazingly, there are apparently people out there who actually enjoy doing laundry.

They say doing the laundry gives them the deep satisfaction of revitalizing their family’s dirty and unwearable garments into fresh, neatly pressed pieces of clothing that play an essential role in the daily lives of each family member.

These laundry lovers also enjoy the repetitive, methodical nature their laundry work requires and find it to be a relaxing routine that allows for quality thinking time.

If any of this seems like a completely foreign concept to you, we suspect you’re in the vast majority of people who wish their laundry chores could be a lot less tedious and time-consuming.

laundry room organization, woman hanging clothes

Practical laundry room organization ideas and tips

While you may not share a similar level of enthusiasm for doing this unavoidable part of your housework, it’s a good bet these laundry lovers have paid considerable attention to how well their laundry room organization functions.

When your laundry room is set up to be a more functional space when it comes to organization and storage, laundry duty becomes a more streamlined and efficient process.

That can make it a task that you may not necessarily come to love, but one that you can enjoy just a little more.

After all, we spend a lot of time in the laundry room. The average American family does about 8 loads of laundry per week. That adds up to hundreds of hours each family spends in the laundry room over the course of a year.

Get one of your home’s hardest working spaces working that much harder for you by using these 7 laundry room organization ideas and tips.

1. Modern laundry room storage cabinets

If your laundry room is using outdated cabinetry, modernizing the space with custom cabinets is a great way to make your laundry room organization function at a higher level.

A family of four or five can require a large number of laundry supplies, such as detergent containers and pods, fabric softener, bleach, dryer sheets, and stain removers.

That’s a lot of items to store and keep organized. Create just the amount of storage space you need for everything with cabinets custom-built to the depth and width you require.

If space allows, the laundry room is also ideal for adding storage space for things in your home other than laundry supplies, such as linens or out-of-season clothing.

Add shelving and storage cubbies for extra storage space for items like laundry baskets and decorative jars to hold your clothes pins and detergents, which adds a little character to the room.

2. Cabinets with pullouts

New storage cabinets are a worthwhile addition to any laundry room. Add some pullouts to those custom cabinets, however, and your laundry room organization gets even easier to manage.

Take the laundry room closet pictured below. The bottom pullout shelves make it much easier to locate and access stored items, whether it’s paper towels, toilet paper, laundry supplies, or the home’s cleaning supplies.

Drawer pullouts can also be added to your cabinetry to give you extra drying racks or a space-saving ironing board. Pullout folding counters and pullout valet rods are another laundry room organization option.

In addition to the functional benefits of cabinets that are custom-made to fit your space and needs, there are also aesthetic benefits.

With beautiful high-end finishes and decorative touches like stylish contemporary hardware, new cabinetry with extra functionality using pullouts can provide the sorely needed modern touch your laundry room has been lacking for too long.

laundry room organization closet

Pullout shelves in a laundry room closet make stored items more accessible.

3. Hidden laundry room storage

Another of our laundry room organization ideas with an eye toward maximizing your storage space is to utilize more of your room’s hidden storage space.

A lot of homes have underutilized storage space underneath the bathroom, kitchen, and laundry room sinks. Add an under sink organizer to put that small space to better use. Considering its low location and the space’s typically poor visibility, use a more convenient pullout under sink organizer.

If your washer and dry are installed on pedestals, take advantage of the drawer storage space they offer.

Another way to add some hidden storage space to a room, while also getting multi-purpose functionality, is with a bench that has underseat storage. Waiting for a washer or dryer cycle to finish is part of the laundry ritual, so why not do it on a comfortable bench that can also store a few things?

All of this hidden laundry room storage, in addition to storing things out of sight behind your cabinetry doors, helps to create a space with less visual clutter.

Studies show that people working in a room with little to no clutter tend to be more productive. That includes the laundry room.

4. Ample hanging space

Having enough hanging space in your laundry room is a key part of keeping it organized.

If you have ample hanging space, you won’t need to clog up your countertops with items of clothing that need to be ironed or folded.

Here are a few laundry room organization ideas for hanging your clothes:

Being able to take items fresh out of the dryer and hanging them in your laundry room’s designated hanging spaces minimizes wrinkling and extra ironing work.

For more delicate clothing that needs to be air-dried, any of these hanging laundry room organization accessories and solutions are also ideal.

5. A folding station

Laundry rooms that aren’t designed to handle all of your laundry duties only add to the amount of time the task takes.

For example, say your laundry room doesn’t have a folding station or enough counter space to sort and fold your finished laundry.

That means you’ll need to move everything to another room and deal with it there. In the meantime, things will get wrinkled and the whole process just takes longer than it should.

A folding station should be part of any laundry room design that aspires to be as functional and as organized as possible for its users.

A workable folding station simply requires having a comfortable amount of flat space to handle your folding duties.

That can come in the form of your laundry room countertops, an island countertop, or pullout counter space.

If you have a small laundry room, the tops of your washer and dryer can also be used as a folding station if they’re at comfortable enough height.

6. Laundry hampers

It’s highly practical to have laundry hampers built right into your laundry room’s cabinetry.

Having multiple laundry hampers located right where you do your laundry allows you and the rest of your family to keep dirty clothes sorted by colour.

Laundry hampers with removable, carryable bags could also be added to your home’s bedroom closets to keep dirty laundry more organized. You also won’t need to deal with unpleasant odours from dirty clothing.

Get the dirty clothes sorted at the source where they’re coming from and you’ll spend less time sorting (or picking them up off the floor) when laundry day comes.

laundry room organization hampers

Add built-in laundry hampers to your bedroom or laundry room. They keep dirty clothes sorted and more organized.

7. A laundry room island

Combine a couple of these laundry room organization ideas by creating a multi-purpose work surface that also provides room for storage – a laundry room island.

For larger laundry rooms, the addition of an island makes a lot of sense. The open space in the middle of a larger room can be put to good use with an island. It may very well become the anchor of your laundry room’s design, where you find yourself spending the majority of your time when tackling your laundry duties.

A laundry room island with a sturdy, yet stylish countertop can be used as your main folding and sorting area.

Some of those aforementioned handy pullout features in your custom cabinetry (like an ironing board and laundry hampers) could be incorporated into a laundry room island.

An ironing board, in particular, is ideal for a laundry room island and the counter space it provides for handling your freshly laundered garments.

Smart laundry room organization solutions

Like washing the dishes or cooking, laundry duties are something that never lets up. Laundry day doesn’t have to be something that makes you regularly shudder, however.

Adding some modern laundry room organization amenities and upgrades can save you time and make your workspace a little more pleasant to spend time in.

Find out how Organized Interiors’ smart and stylish laundry room designs can benefit your home and family. Book a free in-home design consultation with us today.

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The 7 Home Features Buyers Want the Most

home features buyers want house exterior
A home improvement project should upgrade your house with features that add convenience and extra functionality to your living space.

Too many homeowners, however, make the mistake of not adding home features buyers want the most when it comes time to sell their house.

It’s natural for anyone to look more to a home improvement project’s impact on their family’s life over the next 5, 10, or 15 years.

While you’ll get plenty of use out of the home upgrades over that period, casting an eye towards the future should also be a factor in your renovation decisions as well.

Choose home features buyers want and need

Certain renovation projects have a poor return on investment that can significantly affect the back-end value of your expenditure. Experts agree that for potential buyers, these renovations don’t add value to a home:

  • removing closets
  • converting the garage into a living space
  • adding a sunroom
  • turning a spare room into a home theatre
  • adding a pool

These remodeling projects are considered too niche or just not practical for the average homebuyer.

And the first two examples completely go against the second-most important factor that goes into a homebuyer’s decision – available storage space. Not surprisingly, a home’s location was the most important factor.

Do your research to find out which home improvement projects provide a good balance of fulfilling an everyday need and will also be desirable in the eyes of anyone home shopping years from now.

7 of the home features buyers want the most

Certain home features buyers want the most virtually never change.

At the top of that list is storage space. Garage parking space and updates to kitchens and bathrooms also consistently rank highly with buyers.

We’ve looked at numerous studies, surveys, polls, and expert opinions to come up with a list of seven of the home features buyers want the most when they’re searching for a house.

1. Walk-in closet

A recent extensive Canadian Home Builders Association study found that a walk-in closet was the most valued asset of the 3,000 homebuyers surveyed.

A Braun Research survey of 500 realtors found that 97% of them said their clients valued closet storage space more than attic and basement storage space. And a 2013 National Association of Realtors survey shows that a walk-in closet in the master bedroom was the second-most important feature to homebuyers.

For many buyers, a large walk-in closet (also known as a dressing room) is an absolute essential. The absence of one may very well prove to be a dealbreaker for them.

A spacious walk-in closet doesn’t just provide a lot more space to store your clothes (although that’s one of its best benefits). They also:

  • provide a private, relaxing space for getting prepared or unwinding after a long day
  • make it easier to manage your wardrobe and keep it organized (saving you time)
  • provide a stylish and elegant space to showcase your wardrobe and accessories
home features buyers want walk-in closet

A walk-in closet (also known as a dressing room) is considered one of the most essential features for homebuyers.

2. Energy efficiency

The 2017 Canadian Homebuyer Preference National Study shows that better energy efficiency is another of the top home features buyers want and will pay more for.

That Canadian Home Builders Association study also cited energy efficiency as one of the most desired home features for buyers.

This can include everything from a home having energy-efficient appliances, energy-efficient lighting, and modern windows and doors that will keep hydro bills lower. More energy-efficient heating and air conditioning systems are also valued by homebuyers.

Buyers also place a higher priority nowadays on how well insulated a home is. Are the attic, garage, and the rest of the home outfitted with high-efficiency insulation that’s actually been properly installed to deliver the best energy efficiency?

3. Master bathroom

Whether or not a home has a master bathroom is another important factor for many buyers. A master bathroom is defined as a bathroom with a sink, bathtub, and shower that is accessible from the largest bedroom (also known as a “master bedroom”).

The terminology for this room can vary. Some people may refer to it as an “ensuite master bathroom” or simply “ensuite”. It can also be written as “en-suite” (just to make things even more confusing).

When referring to bathrooms and bedrooms, you can expect to hear less usage of the word “master” in the coming years, however. Homebuilders and realtors are phasing it out due to the word’s negative gender and racial connotations.

Bathroom features buyers are looking for most are a custom bathroom vanity/makeup area, two sinks, and a separate shower enclosure. Forward-thinking buyers in their forties and fifties want the latter, in part because they’re considering its ease of use a couple of decades down the line.

Surprisingly, linen closets topped the list of the most desirable bathroom features for new home buyers surveyed in 2013 by the National Association of Home Builders.

4. Two-car garage

For both older homes and newly constructed homes, two-car garages are another feature buyers consider essential. 80% of buyers factor in the garage when making their decision, according to an Impulse Research survey.

And while that Braun Research survey found that 97% of buyers valued closet space more than attic and basement storage space, the garage ranked a close second. Realtors surveyed said that 96% of buyers valued the garage over the attic and basement as a home storage space.

Garages provide valuable storage space not just for tools and items there’s no room for elsewhere in your home, they also allow you to park vehicles indoors. That protects your sizeable investment in your vehicles.

There’s also the convenience of parking indoors. That’s why 55% of homeowners use the garage as their house’s main entryway, according to a Chamberlain Group study.

Garage makeovers are also a hot home improvement trend. As Garage Living’s Linda Fiore Ceolin explains it, “There is so much potential in every garage space, large or small. More homeowners have realized the importance of upgrading their garage to make it a beautiful, functional extension of their living space.”

home features buyers want 2 cars

96% of homebuyers view the garage as a more valuable storage space in a house than the attic and basement.

5. Hardwood floors

The National Association of Realtors survey shows that just over half of homebuyers are willing to pay more for wood floors. The main reasons are its contemporary look, durability, and how much easier wood floors are to clean than carpeting. 

Hardwood is most preferred, especially original hardwood flooring found in older houses, which can be a real home seller. Authentic hardwood flooring is easier to refinish compared to engineered wood flooring. It should also theoretically last a lifetime. 

Engineered wood flooring is less expensive and not as durable as original wood flooring. However, it does nicely replicate the look of hardwood with a hardwood veneer over layered fibreboard and structural plywood.

A higher percentage of homebuyers under the age of 54 looks for a house with wood floors than older buyers. This is attributed to the fact that older generations tend to find carpeting a little cozier and warmer than wood floors.

6. Laundry room

Look at a variety of studies and surveys on the home features buyers want most and a dedicated laundry room will assuredly rank highly on most of them.

In fact, last year’s report from the National Association of Home Builders on the home features buyers desire most had “a separate laundry room” at number one.

92% of buyers surveyed considered a laundry room essential. An increasing number of homebuilders agree and are incorporating laundry rooms into their building designs.  

Those in the aged 35 to 54 demographic placed a high priority on having a laundry room. Millennials especially favour owning a laundry room, preferably upstairs close to a bedroom or on the main floor, off the kitchen. Space-saving stacked washers and dryers are also popular with younger generations.

Laundry rooms are considered a must-have feature for many buyers because of the convenience and high functionality they add to homes. A dedicated space to take care of all of the ironing, sorting, folding and other tasks that go along with laundry duty helps to simplify and speed up the process.

Second floor laundry room.

7. Modern/open concept kitchen

Concluding our list of the home features buyers want most is the open concept kitchen. Once again, younger buyers favour open concept kitchen designs more than baby boomers.

The Canadian Home Builders Association reports that 85-90% of consumers in Ontario and the Toronto area prefer this more modern type of kitchen design.

An open concept kitchen that includes a kitchen island and inclusive eating area is also considered an attractive selling feature, particularly to buyers with kids. 

Realtors and designers widely agree that modern kitchen updates yield better returns come resale time than a bathroom remodel.

Additional modern kitchen upgrades that appeal to homebuyers include:

  • double kitchen sinks
  • high-quality stainless steel appliances
  • walk-in pantry
  • granite, marble, or quartz countertops
  • stylish cabinetry with modern hardware

Do you have the home features buyers want most?

Is your home keeping up with the modern design trends that can make your life more comfortable and pay off when you sell your home?

Organized Interiors specializes in bespoke home organization and storage solutions for the entire home. We can improve your living space with many of the home features buyers want and need the most.

Sit down with us to discuss your aspirations for improving your home’s interior by scheduling a free in-home design consultation.

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9 Small Laundry Room Ideas That Get Creative With Compact Spaces

A large laundry room loaded with all the amenities can make dreary laundry tasks easier to face.

But what if you don’t have the luxury of having ample room to accommodate this hardworking space in your home?

Doing a task that few people enjoy in a cramped, unappealing space that lacks functionality only makes you less anxious to tackle those laundry chores.

Get more out of your space with these small laundry room ideas

If you’re looking to makeover your small laundry room, you’ll need to get creative and implement some smart small laundry room ideas to get the most out of your compact space.

Size isn’t the be-all end-all when it comes to how efficient your laundry room is. A smaller laundry room that utilizes its space well and includes smart storage and organization systems can be surprisingly effective.

In fact, it can even function better than a much larger laundry room that wastes storage space and is poorly laid out. Use these nine small laundry room ideas to help you get more from your compact laundry space.

1. Be smart with your laundry room design

Any small room needs to utilize all of its available space and a small laundry room is no different. You’ll want to carefully consider how every square inch of the space can be useful to you.

Be mindful not to overload your laundry room with too many small laundry room ideas and additions, however. You still need it to be functional and not to detract from your home’s décor if possible.

Floor-to-ceiling custom cabinetry maximizes storage space in a small laundry room.

2. Utilize vertical space and reconsider your appliances

Be sure to utilize as much vertical space in your small laundry room as possible. Go as high as you can with shelving and cabinetry, but not so high that it’s too difficult or unsafe to reach.

A small step stool can give you a few more inches of reaching height for those upper storage areas.

Switching to a washer and dryer that stack also helps to optimize the vertical space in your laundry room. Another one of the small laundry room ideas you can use that saves space is to get an all-in-one laundry appliance that washes and dries.

3. Use washer and dryer pedestals

Another way to gain a little extra storage space is to use pedestals underneath your washer and dryer. Pedestals have a handy drawer that can give you extra room for keeping laundry supplies that are easy to access.

Their primary purpose of pedestals is actually to boost the height of your appliances by about 10-15″. This can make it easier to load and unload machines.

Not every laundry appliance can use a pedestal, so make sure any models you’re looking at can accommodate them.

4. Add a countertop

Adding counter space in your small laundry room gives you a valuable surface that can be used for tasks like folding and sorting laundry or for extra storage.

The countertop can be added above your appliances so no space is wasted and be customized to complement the rest of the laundry room’s décor.

Keep in mind that it is less practical to add a laundry room countertop above your appliances if you’re using pedestals. Also consider that adding a countertop above your machines will only work for front-loading appliances.

5. Include laundry room custom cabinetry

A custom design for your laundry room’s cabinetry will ensure that it’s made to precisely fit within your small space. This ensures that the storage space and functionality in your small laundry room is maximized. All your laundry supplies can stay well-hidden, yet easily accessible and organized.

Enjoy the storage versatility that comes when you have your laundry room customized to include floor-to-ceiling cupboards, shelves, and drawers. Our laundry room cabinetry designs can also incorporate useful features like:

  • pullout drying racks
  • built-in laundry hampers
  • a space-saving built-in ironing board
  • pullout storage racks
  • laundry room accessories

Along with the built-to-fit benefits of custom laundry room cabinetry, the ability to customize also gives you the freedom to have your laundry room’s décor look the way you want.

6. Add a laundry room island

Even though your laundry room may be compact, perhaps you have enough space to add a small multi-purpose island.

A laundry room island can also add extra functionality to the space as a folding area and storage space.

Hidden built-in laundry hamper pullouts and a built-in ironing board could also be included in the island’s design.

7. Utilize dead space for storage

Some of the dead space your small laundry room may have can be utilized for storage. If you have open space on top of your cabinetry, store laundry baskets that can hold loose items and supplies.

Tight corners and awkward spaces can have shelving added and shallow floating shelves can be installed above your appliances if they’re not stacked.

When space is at a premium, having small shelves that can store even just a couple of detergent containers can be quite useful.

8. Use laundry room accessories

Using your room’s underutilized storage space includes adding laundry room accessories and decorative hardware for extra functionality.

Hooks, a retractable valet rod, and an adjustable four position hanger provide extra hanging space for laundry or supplies. And they all take up very little space, which gives you lots of flexibility when deciding where to use them.

If space allows, add an extra hanging rod (even a short one).

small laundry room ideas hanger

Accessories like an adjustable four position hanger can be added almost anywhere in a small laundry room.

9. Incorporate a folding folding station (that’s not a typo)

The last of our small laundry room ideas involves adding a folding station that folds up. Being able to fold your laundry when it’s toasty warm right out of the dryer (instead of having to move it somewhere else to fold) will minimize wrinkling and save time.

This space-saving idea provides a useful workspace and folds up and out of the way when it’s not needed. It’s a clever solution for laundry rooms that can’t incorporate an island or any counter space (or enough counter space) into the room’s design because of space limitations.

Discover how our small laundry room ideas can work in your home

Hopefully these small laundry room ideas have shown you that a compact laundry room space can still provide you with a high level of functionality.

Organized Interiors can work wonders with laundry room spaces both big and small.

Schedule your free in-home design consultation with us to discover what clever laundry room ideas our designers can come up with for your home.

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