The Utility Closet
Let’s face it…no one likes to go to the utility cabinet. If you need anything from the utility cabinet it means something needs to be fixed or cleaned or replaced and none of those things tend to rank very high on anyone’s “want to do” list.
Cleaning and maintenance are both dreaded chores that seem to never end. However, a large portion of the time it takes to do the chore is spent getting everything together and set up. Your cleaning and maintenance chores actually go alot faster when you are prepared and have a plan. The first step, of course, is to get organized!
Take a good look at your utility closet. It may simply be a dedicated cabinet in the kitchen or section of the laundry room. If you don’t have a central space set aside for your vacuum, brooms, mop and other supplies, make one. You (and everyone else in the house) will know where to find what is needed to help out. Even small children can easily grab a towel or sponge to wipe up a spill (just keep the cleaners out of reach).
Find the largest item that will fit in your closet and organize around it. This will usually be the vacuum cleaner or the collection of mops and brooms. As you decide where everything will go, make sure it is all easy to reach and easy to retrieve. If you make it difficult to get to your cleaning supplies, you will inadvertantly discourage yourself (and others) from cleaning.
A wall mountable wire holder, normally used to hold plastic container lids can be installed on the inside of the closet door. Use it to hold your dustpan, sponges, or a first aid kit.
Use a grocery bag holder to store cleaning towels instead of plastic grocery bags. Towels can be placed in the top when they have been cleaned, but will dispense one at a time from the bottom when you need them. You can mount the dispenser to the inside door of your utility closet or on an inside wall.
Install a paper towel dispenser on the inside of the door. Extra paper towels can be stores on a shelf in a basket.
The Grook tool holder will keep your mops and brooms in place until they are needed. Additional hooks are perfect for dusters and other cleaning tools with a notch, hole or loop for hanging.
If available space is hard to find, use a tool holder for your mops and brooms that will slide out when you need it but stay hidden safely away when you don’t. This is especially convenient if a utility closet or cabinet large enough for tall cleaning tools is not available.
Keep cleaners in a portable caddy or bucket. It makes moving from room to room easier. They should be stored on a shelf out of reach of children. If no shelf is available, place a lock on the closet door.
Attach a pegboard to the closet door or on the inside wall and use it to store general maintenance tools. This will keep you from having to run to the garage or basement everytime somethng needs a quick fix. Store a small hammer, a phillips and flathead screwdriver, a wrench and a tape measurer.
Recyclables can be kept hidden away by storing the bins in your utility closet. Attaching one or two cabinet trash bag holders to the inside door of your utility closet creates a great recycling center that is convenient but is still hidden from view. Label each bin so family members know what items are allowed in each bin.
Does your utility closet have a rod in it? A hanging shoe storage bag can be used to store all kinds of cleaners, brushes and towels.