Floor Plan and Design Advice for a Laundry Room Remodel

Advice on Laundry Room Design.

Learn How To Plan for and Design a Layout a Laundry Room Remodel

Whether you're considering adding a laundry room to keep on top of the kid's clothes, or replacing old appliances and want to move them near bedrooms, adding a dedicated laundry room to your home can offer a great return on your investment.

We spend a lot of time in the laundry room, but the funny thing is, unlike kitchens or bathroom, laundry room renovations are often an afterthought. The machines are often placed in an awkward leftover space, or hidden in the basement. A dedicated and planned space can make this household chore more efficient, even fun!

Let's look at some planning steps, design ideas, and problems to avoid when adding a dedicated laundry room to your home!

Planning Your Laundry Room Remodel

The first step is to ask yourself some key questions as you begin planning your laundry room remodel. The first, most obvious question is, why have you decided to remodel? Are you looking for more functionality, or hoping to make the space “more finished?” Will you be working with the space you have, or adding a separate space as part of another project?

If you're planning a bigger project like a master bedroom or kitchen remodel, it may be more cost effective to wait, until you have a contractor, tile installer, plumber and other tradesmen in your home. Often, you can get a better deal by bundling a laundry room remodel with a larger job.

How Will You Use The Space In Your Laundry Room?

Laundry rooms aren't just about laundry. They can have additional storage for household items like dog food, or the cat's litter box. Consider how you'll utilize the space before you start. Many homeowners also make the laundry room function as a mudroom, or a place to store vacuum cleaners, sports gear, as centers for family calendars, home offices, craft rooms, pet rooms, and more!

Give some thought to the functionality of your space. Deciding how you'll utilize the space before you start can make it a more cost-efficient process, especially if you're adding it to another home improvement project.

What Appliances and Features Are Important To You?

Will you use existing appliances or replace them with newer more energy efficient models? The selection of appliances will often help with other decisions about the space. Side-by-side appliances offer younger users easier access than stacked machines. Stacked machines use less space. Do you prefer top loading appliances? That may mean less counter space. If you like to fold and iron clothes before putting them away, then front loading machines and a long counter may be a better use of space.

Don't Neglect Style and Design

Just because it's a “utilitarian” room doesn't mean it has to be a bland space lacking personality! Consider interesting flooring, wallpaper, brightly colored appliances, cabinets, and quality counter tops. Your laundry room can be stylish and functional. It can even add significant value to your home.

Set a realistic budget for your laundry room remodel. Start with the big expenses: cabinets, flooring, appliances and countertops. Once you've got those costs covered, then work on the designer touches like interesting lighting, built-ins, and more. Don't forget to account for expenses like proper venting, plumbing, drainage, and moving walls, which can add to your budget.

Four Laundry Room Remodeling Mistakes to Avoid!

Unexpected issues or oversights can derail the most generous budget. Here are four mistakes to avoid when planning your space!

  1. Poor Drain Placement – Water is the number one issue to consider in any laundry room renovation. Make sure you include proper drainage. If the washing machine overflows when you're out picking up the kids at soccer, you could have a major problem! This simple step can save you big in the event of a clog, or machine failure.

  2. Include A Hidden Shut Off Valve – In the event of a problem, you may need immediate access to a shutoff valve. Ideally, you should place the shut-off valve in an accessible place, high enough to prevent young children accidentally turning it on or off!

  3. Improper Ventilation – Proper ventilation is important for both the washer and dryer. High water temps and high spin speeds can create a humid environment. If the room is improperly vented, it can eventually cause mold. An improperly vented dryer can be a fire hazard.

  4. Inadequate Storage – Even if you've added the safety features to a small laundry room, inadequate storage can be an issue. Make sure you have room for laundry soap, fabric softener, and other tools. Since you're already bringing water into the room, consider adding a laundry sink. It's a great convenience. Consider all of your options before you start!

Remodeling unused space into laundry room can make a boring chore, a little more fun and a lot less time-consuming. Plan your space carefully, make sure you add the features you need and have fun with the design! If you're considering a laundry room remodel, give Forward Design-Build a call. We've been providing clients in Ann Arbor, MI with functional and stylish renovations for years. Let us design the perfect space to meet your family's needs!

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Learn the pros and cons of kitchen floor materials for durability and style.

While there are no hard and fast rules for choosing the perfect flooring for your Ann Arbor kitchen remodeling, there are some factors to consider. You have a wide range of choices and what's right for you, depends on several factors like your budget, the style of your home, durability, and of course ease of cleaning.

Floors can take a beating during normal day-to-day use, and your kitchen floors are especially susceptible. Winters and mud season in Ann Arbor are not kind to flooring. You also spend a good part of your day in the kitchen preparing meals, doing homework with the kids, entertaining family and friends. Then there are the spills... tomato sauce, grease, coffee, wine and more. So it's really important to find the right flooring material that can take the abuse and still make the style statement you want.

Let's look at some of the best kitchen floor materials that can provide you with years of service while remaining beautiful and functional.

Choosing The Right Kitchen Floor Material for an Ann Arbor Home

Today you have a wide variety of materials from which to choose. Excellent surfaces are available in every color, style, and price range that can meet both your aesthetic needs and your budget. Let's look at the pros and cons of several of the most popular flooring materials used in the Ann Arbor area

Ceramic Tile

Ceramic tile is one of the most popular choices and can fit into just about any style and budget. You have a wide variety of choices for color, size, shape, and pattern. Ceramic tile can create any look from traditional and old world, to sleek and contemporary. It's extremely durable and can stand up to just about anything from spills to muddy feet plus; it's easy to clean. There are a variety of attractive low-cost options available.

Tile does have some drawbacks, for example, it can crack as floors settle. It can also be cold and hard underfoot, something to consider during those cold Ann Arbor winters. Moisture can make tile slippery so a honed or textured surface can provide better grip. Tile works well with radiant heating so consider adding this element for increased comfort.

Natural Stone

Natural stone is elegant and unique; no two pieces have the same color or pattern so you can create a visual depth that cannot be replicated. Classic natural stone can make your home feel more upscale. Like tile and concrete, stone can be cool underfoot, but tile made from stone like granite is durable and requires little maintenance.

On the downside, stone can be expensive and tiny imperfections can trap dirt. Softer stone like travertine or limestone can chip or crack. Porous stone like granite or marble will need periodic sealing.

Solid Wood

It's hard to match the warmth and beauty of solid wood flooring. Wood can last almost forever if properly treated, even in rooms with a lot of moisture and heavy foot traffic. It's a classic look and develops a beautiful patina over time. Whether you choose thin strips of maple, or wide pine planks wood offers a look to fit into any kitchen, and it never goes out of style!

You will need to stay on top of spills; they can cause damage if not wiped up right away. Wood also dents and can scratch so it may require periodic refinishing.


Sustainable and natural, cork is a hot new trend in flooring. It offers a distinctive look that features strong patterns and texture. Homeowners love its warm look and eco-friendliness. Cork is resilient, flexible and extremely comfortable underfoot. It can absorb the shock of dropped items (less breakage) and absorbs sound. It's also rich in suberin a natural substance that can help prevent mold, mildew, rot and pests.

While cork holds up well, it does need periodic care. Dirt and grit can “scar” it, so you will need to sweep and vacuum regularly. It will also need periodic resealing with polyurethane or wax. Small dings will heal on their own, but larger scars are hard to fix.


Bamboo flooring is another eco-friendly, surface that's growing in popularity. It's extremely durable and affordable and offers a subtle, variegated look. It's a low maintenance surface, requires no special care and is springier underfoot that wood. It offers a worldly style without the expense of tropical or exotic hardwood.

The downside is that the color choices aren't as broad as wood and it isn't as moisture resistant as many other materials. High humidity can cause warping.


No longer relegated to the basement, concrete has come a long way. It's a natural choice for contemporary or modern spaces and can be customized by staining, stamping, and acid washed to create a visual flair that is both unique and beautiful. Concrete stays cool in the hottest weather and is virtually indestructible.

Concrete can be expensive and difficult to work on. Like tile and stone, it's also unforgiving on the feet. It's a porous surface, so sealing is a must.

Let Forward Design Build Help You Choose The Perfect Kitchen Floor!

These are the most common kitchen floor materials being used in Ann Arbor kitchens. At Forward Design Build we keep current on all the latest flooring options and can help you to make the perfect choice for your kitchen remodel no matter what the budget. If you're planning a kitchen remodel give the experts at Forward Design Build a call! We're always ready to help Ann Arbor homeowners design their dream kitchen, right down to choosing the perfect kitchen floor!

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Forward Design Build is a residential design-build firm in Ann Arbor, Michigan that is known for its commitment to craftsmanship and communication. We are committed to improving our neighbors quality of life with inspired design and creative remodeling. Our homes are highly functional, exquisitely beautiful, and remarkably comfortable. Contact us to speak with an expert about your new home or remodeling project.