By: Gina Hannah from HGTV.com
Keep clutter at bay with the right storage plan and containers.
If your laundry area has a room of its own, it's likely you'll be storing more than laundry soap and fabric softener there. It's a space where you'll find canned goods, household cleaners, garden tools, pet food and supplies, even sporting equipment. It's easy for this space to become a catch-all, but with the right storage containers, you can keep clutter under control and organize important items in a way that will make them easy to find.
Because laundry rooms are usually small compared with other rooms in your home, one of the most efficient ways to organize and store the things you need is to look up. Installing cabinets or hanging shelves will increase your storage space considerably. The more vertical space you can use, the better. Open shelves can be good for large bottles or jars of laundry soap, or even for canned goods, allowing things you reach for often to be easily seen. Household cleaners can be kept behind cabinet doors for a tidy look. Lower cabinets are a great place to install pull-out hampers. If you're using shelves, try to install them with enough space underneath to allow hampers to be tucked away so they won't be in the way when you're stepping around the room.
You'll also want to have the proper containers in which to organize items by category. For pet food, try large plastic bins with screw-top lids that will keep food fresh for several weeks. Other items, such as leashes and pet toys, can be held in a decorative basket. Store flea treatments and other pet medications in a container with a lid, and place it on a shelf or in a cabinet out of reach of young children.
If you store mops, a vacuum cleaner and other cleaning equipment in your laundry room, designate a cleaning "wall" or center to keep like items together. Hang a sturdy rack on your wall high enough to hold brooms and mops. Corral cleaners onto one shelf and store small items, such as rags and sponges, in closed containers that are stackable, to maximize your space. Clear plastic is a good choice because it allows you to see what's inside, or you can label the boxes. On another wall, hang an ironing center by installing a specially designed rack to hold your ironing board and iron. Some racks even have a space to store a can of spray starch.
Store the boxes inside your cabinets or, if you have open shelves, create a tidy, polished look by choosing boxes or baskets that match or are in coordinating colors.
If your laundry space is limited to a closet area, proper organization and storage is crucial to keep clutter from accumulating. Carefully plan your space and limit items only to those things pertaining to laundry or things that must be stored there.