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Sunday, January 15, 2012

The Path to Our Dream Home: Utility (and More) Room

Today I continue the Path to our Dream Home series with the utility room.  If you are just joining me, click the links to go Back to the Beginning, see the Main Bath Transformation, or see the Guest Bath Transformation.

Where once a rickety platform and small set of stairs connected the house and the garage, we built a utility room that in many ways is the most important room in the house.  I have often said this room is what makes the small square footage of our home and limited storage space inside manageable, and I will show you why.  We started with this (double ack!):

We robbed the large two-car garage of a little more space than the old platform occupied to frame in a 12 ft x 8 ft room with a more substantial set of stairs. 

We moved the washer and dryer plumbing from the hallway just inside the house to the new utility room (to expand our Guest Bathroom) and replaced the hot water heater with a tankless version mounted above the dryer. 

We love the tankless water heater.  One of the best features is the ability to select the hot water temperature.  I can wash cloth diapers with 140 degree water and switch the temperature to 104 degrees for the kids' baths.  We also make the most of vertical space by hanging the iron, mops and sweeper vacuum, as well as the clean laundry basket up on the wall.

Along the other side of the room, we installed pre-fabricated utility room cabinets, an upright deep freezer, and a few more shelves for storage.  There is just enough room between the back wall and the large cabinet to store the leaf to my dining room table and the ironing board, along with my large roasting pan hanging on the wall above them.

In the couple of inches between the side of the freezer and the cabinets, I keep a folding table and large art paper.  I use the cabinets, as well as baskets on shelving above the large cabinet, to store pantry items, small appliances, household items and cleaning supplies.   I keep small items like makeup, and pet supplies in clear storage containers at the front of the deep cabinet.  I keep rarely used serving pitchers behind the clear containers and use labels right on the shelf to remind me that they are out of sight in the back.  

I also use labels on the shelves to organize the canned goods and make inventory a breeze.

The open shelves house games, puzzles and craft supplies that need supervision for the kids to use.  I use clear shoe boxes and inexpensive (but super cute) caddies to organize the kids' craft supplies.

With all the things that are stored in this room, including the items in the junk drawer that I organized (in 30 minutes!) for a recent post, this room is a significant part of my home organization strategy.  

What do you find is the most useful room in your home to keep your life and home organized?

This post has been linked to: 

Fantastic Organizing Links at I'm an Organizing Junkie 

Weekend Bloggy Reading - Serenity Now
Inspiration Friday - At the Picket Fence

Potpourri Friday - 2805
Flaunt it Friday - Chic on a Shoestring Decorating

Transformation Thursday - The Shabby Creek Cottage

Crafty Scrappy Happy me.
Hookin' Up with House of Hepworths

Delightfully Inspiring Thursday - Delightful Order

The Creative Spark - Clean & Scentsible

Home Decor & Organizing - organize & decorate everything
Whatever Goes - Someday Crafts

Overflowing with Creativity - It's Overflowing

Show & Tell - Blue Cricket Design

One Project at a Time - A Bowl Full of Lemons
Inspiration Board - Homework

Metamorphosis Monday - Between Naps on the Porch

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