Why Mudroom Design Matters


What is a mudroom meant to be used for, exactly? As we’ve mentioned, mudrooms can serve a wide range of functions and purposes that vary from home to home. Whether it’s a space to clean up after playing outside or where you take your shoes off at the end of a long day, it’s up to the homeowner to determine how they want to use the space. Then, a design expert comes in to ensure the homeowner’s mudroom ideas and desires are executed.

Jenna Designer

Designer Tip

“The mudroom is an important space for effective storage solutions since it’s usually the main point of entry and departure.”
– Jenna Shock, Inspired Closets Pittsburgh

Aside from helping keep everyone in your family organized, saving time, cutting stress, and generally making your life easier now, a custom mudroom is also a worthwhile investment that will add value to your home in the future. In this case, mudroom sizes don’t necessarily matter; what’s important is that the mudroom is intentionally designed and functions well.

According to Angi.com, well-designed mudrooms can boost home value in two key ways. First, because mudrooms are where you clean yourself, your kids, and your pets off before moving into the rest of the home, they play an important role in protecting flooring from water damage, scratching, and more. Having a mudroom as a barrier between the indoors and outside helps prolong the life of building materials throughout your home.

Second, if and when you ever want to sell, mudrooms are appealing to prospective buyers because they add more storage (something buyers are always looking for). Plus, a good mudroom layout makes it easier to keep interior living spaces neat and clean.

Essential Features of a Well-Designed Mudroom


Custom Storage Solutions

The type of mudroom storage each home needs varies depending on the people living in the home, along with their routines, hobbies, etc. For example, a family with small kids will want plenty of space for strollers and diaper bags, whereas a family with older kids might need sports equipment and backpack storage. Pet owners will want a place to hang up leashes and keep toys and treats, and someone who spends a lot of time outdoors will need storage for their gear.

We’re all different, so our storage and organization solutions should be, too. Mudroom cabinet designs and shelving systems that are tailored to the specific storage needs of each home are what help create a mudroom that truly makes life easier for everyone in the family. Opting for different types of custom storage solutions–that are planned and selected by design experts–are the best way to ensure your mudroom functions exactly how you need it to.

Elvira Designer

Designer Tip

“The drop-off zone is a must: mail, grocery bags, and hooks for keys. Leave it all at the door, neat and organized, so you can return to it later.”
– Elvira Tripp, Inspired Closets Vermont

Hooks, Cabinets, and Shelves

Because everyone in the home is regularly coming and going through the mudroom, you want the mudroom layout and placement of commonly used items to be strategic. Hooks for backpacks and bags, custom mudroom cabinet designs for jackets and coats, and open shelving for keys and shoes make grabbing these essentials quick and easy.

We also love incorporating lockers, soft-close drawers, cubbies, and our adjustable Shoe Shrine® into mudroom storage based on whatever your family needs to store and who needs to access what. Each organization and storage method can be mixed and matched to create solutions that are completely custom to each space.

Laura Designer

Designer Tip

“If space allows, design your mudroom with separate cubbies for each family member. This is a great way to organize and maintain peaceful morning Zen!”
– Laura Ferri, Inspired Closets Murrysville

Seating and Dressing Area

One way to add extra practicality and comfort to your mudroom design is by incorporating a bench and/or additional seating. Trust us, having a place to sit when you’re putting your shoes on and taking them off makes all the difference. At Inspired Closets, we often opt for a built-in bench with a hidden compartment inside or underneath to create additional storage.

When considering how to design a mudroom, our experts always ask homeowners whether or not they would benefit from having space to take off outdoor clothing and gear, like stinky sports uniforms, wet winter clothes, or whatever you wear to do yard work. If you have enough space, you can make game day or even mowing the lawn easier with a mudroom/laundry room combo. This way, you can throw dirty clothes right in the wash before they track dirt, allergens, or any smells further inside.

Durable Flooring and Materials

It’s important that the materials used in mudrooms can withstand heavy wear and tear from kids, pets, and guests, along with any moisture that gets tracked indoors from shoes, umbrellas, and dirty paws. Aside from standing up to traffic and the elements, your mudroom’s storage features and materials should be easy to clean, too.

At Inspired Closets, we use premium industrial-grade composite boards, the same type of board that you’d find in furniture and kitchen cabinets. We chose this material because it’s strong, stable, and resistant to changes in the temperature and environment, meaning your mudroom will stand up to even the messiest and most energetic kids and pets. Plus, it comes in a wide range of colors, letting you customize your mudroom design to get the exact look you want. Click here to learn more.

Jenna Designer

Designer Tip

“This room gets a lot of love, so wisely choose finishes throughout the space that can stand up to constant use and some of the outdoors making its way inside.”
– Jenna Shock, Inspired Closets Pittsburgh

Lighting and Ventilation

Plenty of good lighting is crucial in any well-functioning mudroom. Whether you’ve got strong natural lighting to work with or you need to incorporate additional lighting sources like overhead lighting, sconces, or even lights that are built right into your mudroom cabinets, a design expert can help you ensure that your mudroom layout is well-lit so you can easily see everything you need to.

Why does proper ventilation matter in a mudroom? Most homes use this space to store sports uniforms, gym bags, and not to mention, lots of stinky tennis shoes, cleats, and other shoes. Because these items tend to bring in more odors than others, it’s important that their particular storage spaces, as well as the whole mudroom itself, allow for proper air flow so the smells don’t get trapped and the items can properly air out.

Common Pitfalls to Avoid in Mudroom Design

Shoes in Mudroom

Neglecting User Flow and Space Planning

Problem: Forgetting to consider that mudrooms are areas of the home that receive heavy usage and they’re often the transition between the outdoors and the indoors.

Solution: Consider the above elements, each family member’s routines, and how the space will most commonly be used. The best way to ensure these considerations are made, along with the many other key factors that go into mudroom design, is by partnering with a design expert.

Elvira Designer

Designer Tip

“Low storage is convenient and makes it easy for kids to visualize where everything goes. If you have young kids: How many steps will it take your little one to put their shoes, backpack, and coat away? Think FLOW.”
– Elvira Tripp, Inspired Closets Vermont

Underestimating Storage Needs

Problem: Insufficient space and types of storage options for your family’s needs.

Solution: Work with a designer to ensure each family member’s storage needs, and how they can most easily organize and access the things they need to store, are taken into account when planning the mudroom layout and overall design.


Problem: The scale of your new mudroom design doesn’t fit within your space, and/or it overwhelms and crowds the area.

Solution: Partner with a professional who knows how to work with all mudroom sizes, considers the size of the room you’re working with early on in the planning stage, and also ensures that your mudroom’s end design makes the absolute most of the space you have.

Poor Material Choices

Problem: Selecting materials that don’t hold up to mudroom traffic and conditions.

Solution: Choose a reputable, experienced custom storage company that utilizes quality materials. Read more about how to find and select the best custom storage company for your mudroom project here.

Choosing Style Over Function

Problem: Prioritizing style choices and trends over functionality and what you actually need/will work for your family.

Solution: Working with a trained professional who is skilled at balancing aesthetics with practicality for a beautiful yet functional mudroom design.

Laura Designer

Designer Tip

“Mudrooms offer the perfect opportunity to get creative and have fun with color! Countertops, back panels, and doors are perfect for adding a design POP with a contrasting finish. Throw pillows, bins, and even your hooks can also be a creative way to add color and whimsy to your space.”
– Laura Ferri, Inspired Closets Murrysville

Trending Additions to a Well-Designed Mudroom

Mudroom with Laundry

What’s on-trend for mudrooms? Getting the most out of your space by using it in more ways than one. Check out the popular mudroom ideas below that our design experts say more and more homeowners are loving.

Popular Mudroom Design Ideas for Ultimate Convenience:

  • Mudroom/laundry room combo
  • Custom locker-style cabinets and storage
  • Water bottle refill and grab-and-go snack station
  • Family communication center with a cork board, white board, and calendar
  • Pet care station with a bath, food, leash, and toy storage

The Difference a Mudroom Can Make

When it comes to the daily functioning of our homes and the routines of everyone in them, mudrooms play a massive role. They have the power to make life easier and add value to your home. When considering a mudroom addition or renovation, partner with a design expert so your new space functions exactly how you need it to.

For more mudroom layout ideas, download our digital brochure. When you’re feeling inspired and ready for a simple and effortless mudroom design process, click below to request a free, in-home consultation with one of our design experts to get started. Let’s make your mudroom everything you want it to be and more.

Schedule Your Free Design Consultation Today