The Room Millennials Say Is Essential – and Why You Should Stage It

By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine

Millennials may be willing to sacrifice extra square footage in a home and even features like an outdoor kitchen or two-story foyer. But there’s one thing they say they aren’t willing to sacrifice in a new home: A separate laundry room.

A separate laundry room clearly topped the list when the National Association of Home Builders recently surveyed millennials to discover what their “most-wanted” item on their home shopping list was. Fifty-five percent said they wouldn’t buy a new home that didn’t have a separate laundry room. They also ranked storage as important, such as linen closets, a walk-in pantry, and garage storage.

With the laundry room weighing so much on millennials’ buying decisions, you may want to take a closer look at the way you’re presenting the laundry room in your listings. Could it use a freshen up? And if it’s such a selling point, you may want to add a photo of your staged laundry room to your MLS photos.

Take a look at some of these photos from the remodeling site Houzz to get ideas on freshening up your listings’ laundry rooms.

  •  Try a soft paint color — accented with white painted cabinets and trim — to make the space look larger and even cleaner. Enhance with some under-the-cabinet lights that shine on the countertops. (The paint featured in the picture below: Benjamin Moore, Comet)
  • Fresh flowers, bright colored curtains, and even wallpaper behind the cabinets may make the space more inviting. 
  • Wherever there are cubbies, add wicker baskets. Hang a few clothes on wooden hangers to show off the storage options. And if the storage options even include a place for the family’s pet, accent that in a lower cubby too with a stylish pillow cushion. 
  • If the laundry room is small, add a wooden block over the washer and dryer to squeeze in a folding station.
  • Stack a washer and dryer to maximize space in a small area and to make room for some cubbies and shelves. Keep the shelves neat and staged, such as by folding light-colored towels. Keep the laundry accessories displayed to a minimum.

Melissa Tracey

Melissa Dittmann Tracey is a contributing editor for REALTOR® Magazine, writing about home & design trends, technology, and sales and marketing. She manages the magazine's award-winning Styled, Staged & Sold blog.

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  1. Valerie

    You should read your article again and edit and re-post…sounds silly to say ,”even features like an outdoor kitchens or two-story foyer.” I think MOST buyers are not looking for an outdoor kitchen–to say they are sacrificing that is odd. If you said they’d sacrifice a master en suite bath it might make sense. Stopped reading right there, as it was too silly to continue. In fact, you need a spell/grammar check to catch “AN outdoor kitchenS.”

  2. I love all these different styles of laundry rooms! Thanks for sharing.

  3. Great ideas; laundry rooms have more than one use today and are more attractive even if it’s located in basement. Will keep this in mind when staging. Thanks.

  4. Joyce

    A nice big counter to fold freshly washed and dried clothes on becomes almost a necessity once you’re used to it. We bought two workbenches with slick tops for our laundry room, and I love them. We also bought a matching wall cabinet to hold detergent and other laundry products. I put gardening things in this room, too, because there is a nice big window at which I can put plants. We keep a light on a timer over the plants.