10 Laundry Room Design and Organization Ideas

Make doing laundry easier and more enjoyable with these tips for making a better space.

By Devon Thorsby, Editor, Real Estate |Oct. 4, 2019, at 4:40 p.m.

10 Laundry Room Design and Organization Ideas

Slideshow

Revamp your laundry room.

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An organized laundry room can make your daily chores easier. And one that also looks good can help your home appeal to future buyers. In June, the National Association of Home Builders released a report of millennial homebuying preferences, which showed that a laundry room was the most popular "must-have" listed by this group, which currently makes up the largest share of homebuyers in the market. Want to improve the look of your laundry room? Read on for 10 organization and design ideas.

Go from a laundry area to a laundry room.

Go from a laundry area to a laundry room.

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If your washing machine and dryer occupy a lonely corner in your unfinished basement, you need to do some work before you can call the space a laundry room. Home improvement cost-comparison site Fixr reports that the national average cost to remodel a laundry room is between $6,000 and $7,000, but the bottom line can increase significantly depending on the work needed. Installing water hookups and drains, proper venting, drywall, new floors, counters and cabinets will add up. On the other hand, if the room is already established, the project can be done at a lower cost.

Install cabinets and shelves.

Install cabinets and shelves.

a lovely utility room in a large modern new home with ample cupboard space, work-top space and separate washing machine and dryer. The flooring is a high quality porcelain oak-wood effect tile which looks completely natural. The room has been lightly dressed for this image.

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Declutter the overall look of your laundry room by installing cabinets and shelves to hold laundry detergent, dryer sheets and any other items you’d like to keep in the space. Envisioning the custom cabinetry you saw on Pinterest? Keep in mind that there’s no difference in cost for cabinets in your laundry room and cabinets in your kitchen, outside of less square footage. You may opt to splurge on custom cabinets that fit your washer and dryer perfectly, stick with shelves and racks you install yourself or go somewhere in between with stock cabinetry options. “There’s pretty high-quality construction with stock (cabinets),” says Dan DiClerico, home expert and smart home strategist for HomeAdvisor. A simple shelf you install yourself can be as low as $15, according to HomeAdvisor, or you can spend anywhere from $150 to more than $1,000 for a more elaborate setup.

Build a system to separate your clothes.

Build a system to separate your clothes.

Men wearing white shirt arranging clean green towels at laundry room

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Make separating your colors, whites, darks and delicates easy with separate laundry baskets for each type of clothing. Then, as you go about swapping loads, you don’t have to repeatedly sort through a big pile of mixed clothes. For organization, install a rack or set up a drawer set so you can store the laundry baskets or bins vertically. The Container Store’s Elfa system, best known for closet organization, also offers mesh laundry sorter options with varied basket sizes based on how big your load sizes may be, starting at about $140. Unused bookshelves or an old dresser could also be converted to a laundry basket organizer.

Create a folding station.

Create a folding station.

Chores

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Give yourself a space to fold your clean clothes in the laundry room. Options include splurging on a professional countertop installation, opting for minimal effort by setting up a folding table or taking on a DIY project for affordable customization. You could build a table that fits the exact measurements of the available space in your laundry room – a fairly simple woodworking project – or get a little fancier with a hinged tabletop that hangs from the wall and can be folded up when not in use.

Make space for drying and hanging racks.

Make space for drying and hanging racks.

Close up on clothes on drying rack

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For your nicer clothes, hanging them immediately after drying or even skipping the dry cycle altogether is key to keeping them in good condition. Make this easier by creating space in your laundry room to hang items so they can dry. A portable closet may do the trick, or you could install a hanging rod or PVC pipe. Home Depot offers a variety of drying racks, both free-standing and wall-mounted, that range from $17 to $120. For a more stylish option, Pottery Barn offers a wall-mounted drying rack with a galvanized metal frame for $99.

Store your ironing board.

Store your ironing board.

Closeup shot of an unidentifiable woman ironing clothes at home

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When you’re not actively working the wrinkles out of your clothes, you need a place to put your ironing board. For more efficient storage, go with an ironing board hanger, many of which include a spot for your iron and can be screwed into the wall or simply hung over the back of a door. Ironing board hangers range in price on Amazon from $8 to a little over $20 – but make sure you select a hanger that will fit your board and iron. You could also go for a more vintage look and create an ironing board cabinet that's common in midcentury modern homes – when you open the cabinet door, you can fold down the ironing board and begin working on clothes.

Opt for reusable containers.

Opt for reusable containers.

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To avoid styling your laundry room like the detergent aisle at your grocery store, transfer your powder detergent, dryer sheets and other items to reusable glass or plastic containers. Large, clear jars with lids will provide an organized look while also making it easy to see what’s inside. You may even choose to replace a liquid detergent container with a large jar with a spout (but keep the cap from the original bottle for correct measurement). Plenty of stores, ranging from The Container Store to Walmart, offer a variety of glass and plastic containers that could meet your needs.

Designate a spot for mismatched socks.

Designate a spot for mismatched socks.

Three colorful socks with horizontal stripes placed on a wooden surface

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Whether it’s a small bin near your laundry baskets or a string with clothespins on the back of the wall, a designated place for single socks and other items missing their match will help keep your laundry room more organized. This is a simple addition that can cost anywhere from nothing to $10. You can opt to keep it simple with a basket or string, or decorate a piece of wood with hooks or pins to hang on the wall for a more personal touch. Just don’t forget to occasionally go through the mismatched socks and other pieces of clothing – you may have full sets sitting in there waiting to be used.

Stick to an organizing schedule.

Stick to an organizing schedule.

close up of calendar and clock on green background, planning for business meeting or travel planning concept

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Just because you have a room designated for laundry and all the supplies that go with it doesn’t mean you should let the room become a catch-all for all your extra items. Once you’ve established an organizational system in your laundry room, it’s important to keep up with it. Maintaining a well-organized room requires consistent work, says Tracy McCubbin, founder of organizing company dClutterfly and author of “Making Space, Clutter Free.” Dedicate time every week or two to manage the piles of clothes that build up, as well as cleaning products or other items that don’t get put back properly. Make this task part of your regular cleaning schedule. As McCubbin stresses: “Once a week, you need to spend a little time decluttering.”

Find a place for extra cleaning products.

Find a place for extra cleaning products.

Shelves in pantry with cleaners for home close-up

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Consider utilizing unused space in your laundry room for other cleaning products. Racks can hang from the wall or behind a door, or additional shelves can be placed over your washer and dryer, sink or folding station. You can even transform the narrow spot next to your washing machine by getting a narrow rolling cart. These carts are easily tucked away and come in a variety of styles. Wayfair lists multiple options, starting around $16 and going over $45.

Here are 10 laundry room design and organization ideas:

Here are 10 laundry room design and organization ideas:

Cropped shot of a young man holding a load of freshly folded clean laundry

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  • Go from laundry area to laundry room.
  • Install cabinets and shelves.
  • Build a system to separate your clothes.
  • Create a folding station.
  • Make space for drying and hanging racks.
  • Store your ironing board.
  • Opt for reusable containers.
  • Designate a spot for mismatched socks.
  • Stick to an organizing schedule.
  • Find a place for extra cleaning products.

Read More

Devon Thorsby is the Real Estate editor at U.S. News & World Report, where she writes consumer-focused articles about the homebuying and selling process, home improvement, tenant rights and the state of the housing market.

She has appeared in media interviews across the U.S. including National Public Radio, WTOP (Washington, D.C.) and KOH (Reno, Nevada) and various print publications, as well as having served on panels discussing real estate development, city planning policy and homebuilding.

Previously, she served as a researcher of commercial real estate transactions and information, and is currently a member of the National Association of Real Estate Editors. Thorsby studied Political Science at the University of Michigan, where she also served as a news reporter and editor for the student newspaper The Michigan Daily. Follow her on Twitter or write to her at dthorsby@usnews.com.

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