Make The Laundry Room More Convenient
Have an older home? Contemplating a remodel? Something that can make a big difference both in the way your home functions, and ultimately in the resale value is by moving the laundry room.
Older homes often have the laundry room tucked away in the basement. Even if it’s on the main floor off of the kitchen, it can improve efficiency by moving it closer to the bedrooms.
The typical Atlanta family will spend around 7 hours per week doing laundry. Manufacturers will tell you that the average load of laundry takes about 2 hours of time, from loading it into the washer to taking it out of the dryer. Now add in the amount of time it takes to collect the clothes, transport them to the laundry room, sort them, wash and dry them, fold or hang them up, then return them to the bedrooms. All of that takes much longer if you’re moving up flights of stairs and walking through hallways and rooms to get there.
Ease of use will instantly improve simply by moving it closer to where the action is. Moving it up from the basement near the kitchen or mudroom will put your workspaces together. Or move it near the bedrooms and have it operate more efficiently. You may also add value to your home, as recent studies have shown out-of-the-way laundry facilities can decrease home values by as much as 4 percent.
If a new laundry room is on your list of remodeling projects, you’ll quickly find it isn’t a DIY project. Laundry rooms need proper plumbing and ventilation to ensure they operate correctly. Costs will depend on where you place the laundry room and the number of physical changes that need to be made.
The Perfect Space
Laundry rooms can be any size and in any location. A spare linen closet near the bedrooms can be used to house a stackable washer and dryer. Or convert a small room into an elegant laundry room. A standard washer and dryer need approximately 6 feet wide by 3 feet deep. Add in sinks, folding tables, laundry supplies, ironing boards and you’ll need a few feet more.
Laundry rooms need a few basic things to function: plumbing and wiring. Building codes also dictate that you install flexible ductwork for the dryer and shut off valves for the washer. You may also need a structural engineer if your home requires additional floor joists to support the added weight and constant movement that comes with a washer and dryer.
Gas or Electric?
Most dryers are 30 to 32 inches in depth, with an added need of up to 6 inches more for clearance for venting ducts and gas connections if you’re using gas. Don’t assume you can use a small room and just shut the door. Building codes will determine the most suitable door for your location. You’ll also need a vent with a fan to bring in enough air for proper combustion for a gas dryer. You’ll also want to ensure that you have enough space to easily move the washer and dryer in and out of its new location.
Are you ready to make your home more efficient with a new laundry room?