Making the Modern Mudroom

Mudrooms in today's houses are bigger and better then ever, often becoming the "control center" in a new home's design. Over the last decade there has been a noticeable rise in the square footage devoted to mudrooms — and with that, homeowners have gotten added use and versatility out of them. Many families rely on their mudroom to keep the household in order and running smoothly.

What Can I Do with a Mudroom?

Mudrooms are perfect for placing all those odds and ends that clutter up a house. The kids' backpacks, winter coats, lunch boxes, sporting equipment, and even the dog's leash all have their own space to be stored instead of taking up room in the rest of your house. Mudrooms easily adapt and change to the needs of your growing family. A table that used to hold lunch boxes and toys can become the place for older children's text books and car keys.

Today's mudroom paradigm consists of more than just a small space to take your boots off. Today's mudrooms handle a multitude of the household activities, including sorting mail, hanging car keys, setting down groceries, recharging cell phones, hanging up school projects, doing crafts, and folding clothes.

From Simple to Elaborate

Mudrooms come in different sizes, from simple plans to large spaces with deluxe features. Whatever space you have to work with, storage and organization are the essential goals. For great space-saving tips start with coat racks, key racks, and cubbies. Add a counter space for mail and a bulletin board for messages.

More elaborate plans may include a sewing, craft, or workout area. A computer center and/or homework spot would also make a nice addition. Get creative and include a mail center with slots that distinguish bills from personal mail. The addition of a sink is perfect for washing up before entering the rest of the house.

Plans and What to Look For

Mudrooms are typically found off the garage, near or connected to the laundry room. The process of planning a successful mudroom should start in the idea phase of your new home. Brainstorm activities and chores your family will undertake and which of those your new mudroom can encompass. Be sure to think toward the future, both in terms of your needs and what new products might be included into your mudroom someday.

Researching "what's new" in the market will give you ideas for your mudroom that may make things easier. And remember to include your builder in ideas you have for your mudroom. Chances are he or she has had a lot more experience with mudrooms than you, and a collaborative effort on both parts can lead to constructive results. And as with every step of finding your new home plan, remember to have fun with it and be creative.