Passive Home Laundry Rooms

Often paired with our super small utility rooms, laundry spaces differ from plan to plan. Let's look at factors determining placement.

Often paired with our super small utility rooms, laundry spaces differ from plan to plan. Let’s look at factors determining placement.

Laundry and your life

In our recent blog posts on designing a utility room for your passive home, we looked at the elements that go into this space that requires much less square footage than a conventionally built home.

We also looked at utility room layouts and common passive home scenarios, where elements like laundry rooms, mud rooms, and powder rooms are variously paired with the utility room function.

In our four bedroom model home in Ottawa, Canada, a super smart bungalow, we opted to position the utility room elements in the home’s entrance hallway (neatly concealed by doors), while opting for a separate stand alone laundry room tucked behind the home’s main shared bathroom.

In this post, we’ll address factors influencing where laundry elements might sit in your passive or net zero home.

Click to learn more about our net zero model home in Ottawa, Canada
In the EkoBuilt model home, the utility room is tucked into a double closet at the home’s front entry. A small coat closet is on the opposite wall.

Laundry placement

Factors influencing placement of your laundry room or elements will include:

  1. Volume – how much laundry will you be doing? Do you need to easily be able to attend to other things while advancing laundry through cycles?
  2. Space – how much room do you need? Is it important to you to have dedicated folding space, hanging space, etc.?
  3. Storage – what else do you tend to stash away that will need storage? Try to uncouple it from laundry if you can, as there are many clever ways to build storage into the right spots in your home.
  4. Lifestyle – if, for example, you or your kids are on sports teams and there is an endless parade of clean and dirty uniforms in and out of your laundry, you may want to consider positioning laundry near your home’s entrance or garage.
  5. Sound – even the quietest laundry machines will make some noise and this may influence where you place your machines.
  6. Access – carting laundry around the house can feel like a time waster to some. If you’re in a two-storey home, consider placing laundry near bedrooms if this matters to you.
A picture of clothes in a laundry basket

If you’re unsure where to begin, start by looking at our passive house layouts and this blog post about the most common options for utility, laundry and other elements every home needs:

A floorplan for a two bedroom hallway with laundry, utility, and a bathroom.

Combined utility / laundry in bedroom wing

In a very small home, like our Goldenrod floorplan (two bedroom, 1,080 sq ft), the utility room and laundry are combined in the bedroom hallway, separate from the main living area.

A linen closet is conveniently placed across the hall.

Combined utility / laundry in entryway

Utility rooms are often positioned near the main entrance in our passive house plans.

Our Galetta floorplan (two bedroom, 1,365 sq ft), situates the combined utility room and laundry off the main entrance. Plumbing is shared with the master ensuite, which is placed adjacent.

Combined utility / laundry with mudroom opposite

Our Shooting Star floorplan (two bedroom, 1,232 sq ft) features a very practical entrance area, with a utility / laundry room combo positioned to one side of the main entrance, and a compact mudroom / powder room combo on the other side.

In this utility room scenario, the washer and dryer have been stacked next to a sink, in a more space efficient layout.

Paired laundry and utility rooms tucked out of sight

Our Trillium floorplan (four bedroom, 3,121 sq ft), takes a different approach to the common pairing of laundry and mechanical room elements in a passive home.

In this layout, the laundry room takes precedence, as it’s used more frequently, and the mechanicals are in a connected space beyond. The entrance to this space is situated around the corner from the main entrance, where a bench with hooks, a closet, and a two-piece powder room are integrated.

Mud room with laundry and utility elements

Our Sumac floorplan (four bedroom, 2,128 sq ft) places the emphasis on a hardworking mudroom off the main entrance, with laundry facilities included.

In this passive home layout, the mechanicals are positioned in a shallow closet that runs the length of the mudroom space. Most of our homes require a space for HVAC and the home’s other mechnical systems no bigger than this simple double closet format. Learn more.

Laundry facilities and mechanicals off the garage

Our New Edinburgh floorplan (two + two bedroom, 2,524 sq ft) offers a layout suitable for a narrow urban lot. In this arrangement, the laundry and mechanical elements are situated in a room entered from the garage or carport.

Also on this ground floor are the master bedroom with ensuite, and a separate two-piece powder room, as well as a den and the front entrance (not shown). In this layout, the kitchen, dining and main living spaces are upstairs on the second floor, along with another bedroom and bathroom. An office and studio occupy the topmost floor.

Designing your passive house

The layouts shown here are meant to be both informative and inspirational.

Our existing 55+ passive house plans are a tremendous starting point for anyone planning a sustainable home, and any of our plans can be easily modified to suit how you live.

Looking for a narrow, multi-storey home like our New Edinburgh for your tight urban lot, but don’t love the room combinations on each floor? We can easily change those rooms to best suit how you plan to live, at no additional cost.

Give us a shout to discuss your perfect plan!

Poster for EkoBuilt's passive house webinar series for home owners
The next webinar is August 15th – don’t miss out!

Leave a Reply