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According to Merriam – Webster a mudroom is considered a room off the kitchen or basement “designed specifically for shedding dirty or wet footwear and clothing.”  Historically mudrooms were common in homes located in regions that experienced all four seasons, especially wet climates. The debris of the outside collecting on the bottom of our soles had a designated space to go before entering the rest of the home. Today the mudroom has taken on various interpretations and has become a very popular request for the remodel and new construction industry. No longer is this space just a place to shed those dirty boots. Adding laundry appliances, pet washing stations, message centers and even desk spaces are common requests. If you are looking to upgrade your existing mudroom or add it to a new floor plan, here are two tips to consider on how to maximize the functionality of your space.

Durable Materials: Though this seems like an obvious tip, it often can be overlooked. Since this space will likely be a main path of travel be sure you are selecting durable materials that will last long and be easy to clean. Ceramic tile with tight grout joints and luxury vinyl planks or tiles are the two most practical solutions for flooring in this area. Both will hold up to the dirt and grime and will be easiest to clean. Any baseboard or trim should be painted with a satin or semi-gloss to ensure ease of clean. The higher the sheen the easier it will be to keep it looking like new. If you are installing any sort of cabinetry, think about wood or darker paint colors for base cabinets to minimize the noticeable amount of wear and tear.

Storage: Let’s face it, we all could use a little extra storage in our homes. Be sure to maximize wall space with cabinets that go to the ceiling, if possible. Explore closet systems to help use every square inch of those impractical reach-in closets with wire shelves. Do the kids leave their backpacks here? If so, use fun hooks that reflect your personality to get the bags up off the floor. Are your vacuum and Swiffer jammed into a corner behind your doors? Evaluate what items need to be stored in this space and find a home elsewhere for everything else. For design ideas, be sure to check out this inspirational blog on ways to add some of your own personality to this once utilitarian space.