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How to Plan a Mudroom

Are the shoes, keys, and coats lying around your house driving you crazy? Need some extra storage? Convert an existing room into a mudroom and equip it with easy-to-reach shelves and pegs to keep things organized.

Plan a mudroom

Benefits of a Mudroom

mudroom cabinet

A mudroom traditionally serves as a buffer zone to keep rain, snow, and mud from getting inside your home. Mudrooms can be a separate room or an area near the entry that acts as a transition zone. The benefits of having a mudroom include:

A Clean Space
Instead of mopping and cleaning the whole house every time the kids and dogs come running in from the rain, all you've got to worry about is a small area. If you have the space, add a floor drain or sink to your mudroom.

Storage
A mudroom can double as an extra closet. Use it in the winter to quickly grab coats, scarves and gloves as you're headed out the door. Switch out to pool towels, toys, flip flops and sandals in the summer.

Heat Transfer
Mudrooms increase heating and cooling efficiency by adding a transition zone. The ideal mudroom has two doors: an outside entrance and an inner door.

Good to Know

Do you have allergies? Adding a mudroom will help cut down on the amount of dust, pollen, and mold tracked into your house.

Determine a Location

In many homes, mudrooms are an easy addition or conversion. Standard dimensions are usually between 6-foot by 6-foot and 7-foot by 9-foot. Make it larger if you wish to add a washer and dryer. Locate a mudroom where it'll be most useful and convenient. Typical mudroom locations include:

Kitchens
They're usually near driveways and backyards. In most homes, the kitchen becomes the mudroom by default since that's where the entry door is usually located. Convert the area near the entry door into a truly mud-proof zone.

Garages
They are transition areas from the outdoors. Convert a corner of your existing garage. If you're building a new home or adding on a garage, build a mudroom too.

Utility Rooms
They can be expanded and make good mudroom conversions if they have an outside entrance.

Select Your Storage

pegs for coats, scarves and dog leashes

Adequate storage is a must. Make room to store your things with the following items:

Shelving
Shelving is essential. Use ventilated wire for quick drying.

Hooks and Pegs
They accommodate wet jackets, hats, purses and umbrellas. Also use pegs or hooks to keep track of keys and dog leashes. Hang pegs at proper levels for each family member's easy reach.

Baskets and Bins
A mudroom is a great place to store recycling bins. Then add a laundry basket or bin for wet clothes.

Shop Storage & Organization

Good to Know

To keep things organized, personalize each family member's storage area by color or name.

Choose Your Flooring

Vinyl flooring

This is one room where you want the floor to get dirty. Select flooring that's moisture-proof, easily cleaned and practically indestructible. Here are a few options:

Tile or Stone
Select tile or stone that's non-slip.

Vinyl
Pick a color that won't show dirt, and install it on a moisture-proof substrate.

Concrete
It's easy to clean and makes an attractive alternative when it's stained or etched.

Fiber Mats and Boot Scrapers
Keep these at the door to get the dirt and mud off your shoes.

Rugs
Use non-skid, washable rugs to collect water and dirt before it's tracked into the house.

Shop Flooring
Flooring for Every Room

Ventilate Your Mudroom

Proper heating and ventilation reduces humidity and prevents mildew. It also speeds up the drying of wet garments. An adjustable vent to control heat or air conditioning is a small investment.

  • A bath-type exhaust fan with a timer is effective, as long as it's vented outdoors.
  • A heat lamp eases the chill on winter days.
  • Make sure the entry doors are airtight and secure. Use pet doors to save energy.

Shop Exhaust Fans
Shop Pet Doors

Other Considerations

umbrella stand

If you plan to add a wall color, select paint that's easy to clean, mildew-resistant and moisture-proof. Higher gloss acrylic latex paint offers these features plus extra stain resistance.

Other things to consider include:

  • A bench or chair is convenient for removing wet shoes. Keep a pair of clean, dry shoes or slippers nearby.
  • Add a stand to hold wet umbrellas.
  • A mirror is also a practical addition if you want to get a quick peek at yourself as you leave.

Shop Paint
Shop Indoor Benches