It may or may not come as a surprise, but Australia’s population has almost doubled in size over the last 50 years. As a result, our housing looks a little different to what it once did. We’ve seen a shift away from the traditional dream of a large family home on a quarter-acre block, with higher-density townhouse and apartment living now becoming more commonplace.
Without wanting to sacrifice on amenity, many homeowners have to think outside the box to find smart ways to pack everything they need in a laundry into the smaller footprint of today’s more compact homes.
Here we’ll share some of our favourite laundry designs that are ideal for smaller spaces, so you can pack more punch into your next laundry renovation.
The European Laundry
Europeans were adept to living in smaller homes long before the trend made its way to Australia, so it makes sense to look to them for guidance when it comes to compact living solutions.
The European laundry, whereby a laundry is created in a closable cupboard or alcove, came about as a way to provide the same functionality of a basic laundry without jeopardising the aesthetic of a space. When the laundry is not in use, the space can be completely concealed behind bi-fold or other doors so you wouldn’t even know it was there.
Traditionally only including very basic facilities, modern innovations have meant that many European laundries can now provide all the same functionality as a larger laundry, without the hefty footprint. While European laundries are generally best suited to a hallway, if you’re very tight for space, it could be worth considering if it could be situated in a bathroom or even underneath a staircase.
The Multifunctional Laundry
The golden rule of compact living is to ensure that every space performs more than one function. Rather than viewing the space purely as somewhere to do laundry, some laundry designs are intended to perform more than one function.
If your home only has one bathroom, you could consider including a second toilet in your laundry, allowing the space to serve as both a laundry and powder room. Not only will it be a convenient addition, but it will also likely add some extra value to the home.
Another great solution is to include some wall hooks and low-level shoe storage to emulate the concept of the ‘mud room’, only on a much smaller scale. This will provide a dedicated space where the kids can hang up their school bags or kick off their shoes after sport, helping to keep the rest of the home neat and tidy.
If you’re a pet-lover, you could consider including an under-bench nook which is perfect for a cosy doggy bed, or even a dedicated space to keep the kitty litter tray out of sight.
You could also consider adding floor-to-ceiling cabinetry to provide some much-needed extra storage, and even negate the need for a separate linen press elsewhere in the home. Many homeowners are amazed at the volume of extra storage they gain by fully utilising their vertical wall space with a carefully selected combination of drawers, cupboards and shelves!
The Innovative Laundry
Modern laundries need to work smarter, not harder. Pay attention to any new innovations that could help you get more out of your laundry without having to expand its footprint. Think space-saving solutions like slide-out hampers tucked away within the under-bench cabinetry, a fold-out ironing board or a wall- or ceiling-mounted drying rack.
Smart appliances can also go a long way to making for a more compact and efficient laundry. Washer-dryer combos are a great space-saving solution if you only rely on your dryer for occasional use. Many modern washers are also app-enabled, allowing you to control and monitor your laundry remotely to help you manage the workload more efficiently and keep on top of things.
Speak to the Experts
Want to find out how you can get more out of your compact laundry? The team at Mint Kitchens can show you a range of smart solutions to pack all the features you need into your new laundry, even if you’re limited in space.