Instead of calling it a mudroom, they should call it what it really is: an everything room. Let’s face it – the mudroom is the favorite dumping ground for everything that comes into or goes out of your home because it’s conveniently located right where you come and go.
Because it’s a high traffic area, that’s all the more reason to make certain you have the right storage systems in place to handle the daily drops. Nothing is worse than trying to haul in a load of groceries while juggling a purse, diaper bag and a grumpy toddler and tripping over the overflowing clutter.
Tips on How to Organize those Messy Mangy Mudrooms
#1: Manage the Mud – Whatever the season, chances are your shoes are going to bring mess in with them. Place cleanable plastic trays in the bottom of your shoe storage so all you have to do is take them outside and hose them down.
#2: Set the Rules – Teach your kids (and the big kid) to remove dirty footwear, hang up coats, and unpack backpacks before stepping further into the house because chances are if they get more than a few steps inside, the dirty shoes and coats are going to be flung everywhere.
#3: Personalize Storage –Designate a storage area for each member of the family. Ideally each member would have his or her own cubby, but even labeled hooks is enough to help family members keep track of where their stuff goes.
#4: Hang Hooks High and Low – If you want your kids to hang up their coats (and of course you do), hang hooks high AND low to allow little ones to reach them.
#5: Create Deposit Zones – Without a deposit zone, stuff will get deposited throughout the house. Instead of everything bin that just ends up a messy jumble, create specific deposit zones. For example, designate a drawer for unopened mail, a note drawer to file notes from teachers, a craft drawer for any school artwork and so on.
#6: Label Bins – Use labeled bins to store items like hats, mittens, sunscreen, bug spray and anything else you typically need as you are rushing out the door.
#7: Use an In/Out Box System – Designate one of your storage bins as an in/out box for anything that you bring in or take out of the house, such as the favorite toy for show and tell or items to be returned to others. If possible, create one for each family member.
#8: Establish a Weekly Routine – Without weekly attention, your mudroom will quickly lose functionality. Every week clear out the deposit zones, and re-establish any systems that have gone amuck.
#9: Stay on Top of the Seasons – Transition seasonal clothing out of the mudroom and store in the garage, storage room or basement until it’s needed again. Remember, your mudroom is not a storage room, it’s a functional space for making it easier for you to come and go from your home.