Laundry Goes Mainstream

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Laundry rooms often are difficult spaces to merchandise in a model home, but new products are making it easier.

July 01, 2004

 

Merchandisers also are showing hobbies in progress, such as the pet grooming area and "doggie shower" shown in the Van Tassle model at Half Hollow in Dix Hills, N.Y. The model was built by WCI Spectrum Communities and merchandised by Lita Dirks and Associates.

Laundry rooms often are difficult spaces to merchandise in a model home, but new products are making it easier. Keeping abreast of what research says about how today's consumers want to use these spaces also lends a clue. According to Whirlpool Corp., the latest trend is a new kind of laundry room known as the Home Activity Center, a multi-functional space where family members can engage in crafts, gardening or dog grooming.

In a National Association of Home Builders' consumer preference survey, 95 percent of respondents said they want a separate laundry room in their new home. And the NAHB Remodelors Council reports that they want that space to be a multipurpose work area for more than doing laundry. Among their desires are:

  • More counter space in which to work, and they want that counter space to match that of the kitchen.
  • Plenty of storage cabinets to match the quality of that in the kitchen, and cabinets that hide appliances when not in use.
  • Upscale appliances, sometimes even two dryers to keep up with large family wash loads.

Along with upstairs laundry rooms, builders are beginning to show in their models such laundry room amenities as the Maytag Neptune Drying Center, the Whirlpool Personal Valet, jetted laundry sinks and built-in ironing boards.

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