7 reasons why you should create a utility zone in your home

Creating a utility zone in your home goes beyond organization; it's about dedicating a space to serve an array of practical functions

Why you should create a utility zone in your home
(Image credit: Lauren Caron/Studio Laloc / John Lewis of Hungerford / Kathleen Walsh Interiors)

Creating a utility zone is a simple way to make your home work harder for you and restore your work-relaxation balance, say experts. 

If your home or apartment lacks the space for a purpose-built utility room, a designated utility zone might just be the key to simplifying your day-to-day chores and getting on top of your home organization.

We asked experts about the benefits of creating a utility zone in a home. Here's what they said.

7 reasons why you should create a utility zone in your home

In today's world, where rooms often need to serve multiple functions, the concept of a utility zone emerges as an ideal solution for many homeowners. 

This dedicated space offers the perfect balance between functionality and separation, catering to the needs of modern living. 

1. To create a functional, multi-purpose space

Ironing board holder

(Image credit: Go Modern Furniture)

Creating a utility zone in your home is about more than simple organization. These handy zones serve an array of practical functions, from a place to fold laundry and feed your pets to storing cleaning supplies or seasonal gardening equipment. 

By centralizing household utilities in one area, you can keep these functions separate from the main living areas, making your home feel more organized and freeing up other rooms from unnecessary clutter. 

What's more, segmenting areas of your home is key to a proper work-relaxation balance, particularly for those who struggle with delineating boundaries.

2. To reduce clutter

Pantry painted in Farrow & Ball Dead Salmon

(Image credit: Lauren Caron/Studio Laloc)

Creating a utility zone with plenty of utility storage can help you declutter other areas of your home, as it provides the perfect place for items such as laundry baskets, cleaning supplies, pet bowls, and odd tools. 

It also provides you with a convenient catch-all space to put items you are decluttering from other living spaces, streamlining your organizing and decluttering routines.

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3. To make the most of your space

Laundry room

(Image credit: Kathleen Walsh Interiors)

In essence, a utility zone combines the functions of several rooms into one space. For example, some zones serve as a supply closet, a laundry room, and a pantry. By strategically arranging them – creating various zones for different functions – you can maximize the potential of these spaces. 

There are various clever utility room organization and storage techniques that can be used to make the most of this space. Try installing pull-out drawers, ceiling-mounted drying racks, pull-out ironing boards, or labeled storage bins. 

4. To improve energy efficiency

Green mudroom

(Image credit: Ca'Pietra)

'A utility zone, typically a designated area where major utilities like the HVAC system, water heater, and electrical panels are located, can contribute to better energy management and overall home efficiency,' explains Jimmy Hiller, the CEO and president of Happy Hiller.

Headshot of the  CEO and President of Happy Hiller
Jimmy Hiller

Jimmy Hiller founded Hiller Plumbing in 1990: a family-owned and operated business that provides plumbing and HVAC services throughout Tennessee, Southern Kentucky, and Northern Alabama. 

'By creating a utility zone, you can implement zone heating or cooling systems, which allow you to heat or cool specific areas of your home based on your needs. This can help you cut energy bills by avoiding unnecessary heating or cooling of unoccupied rooms,' adds Shlomo Cherniak, owner of Cherniak Handyman Services.

'Each zone can have its own smart thermostat, allowing occupants to set the temperature to their liking without affecting other areas of the house. By having separate controls for different areas, you can optimize the use of heating and cooling systems, reducing energy waste and lowering your carbon footprint. '

Shlomo Cherniak

Shlomo Cherniak is a handyman and founder of Cherinak Home Services in Baltimore. He has over seven years of experience in home improvement, with him and his team specializing in everything from installing kitchen cabinets to fixing leaky faucets to hanging pictures on the wall.

5. To increase your home's value

utility rooms

(Image credit: Carpetright)

'From a real estate perspective, homes with strategically planned utility zones tend to be more attractive to potential buyers,' explains Heidi Hicks, real estate agent at Visions First Realty. 'The thoughtful organization of space and the convenience it provides can positively influence a property's perceived value.'

Headshot of Heidi Hicks, Realtor at Visions First Realty
Heidi Hicks

Heidi is a Real Estate Transaction Coordinator at Visions First Realty, serving the Ashland WI area. She has a genuine love for real estate and experience in everything from selling/purchasing to renovations and creative design ideas.

6. To simplify maintenance and repairs

A laundry room with bifold doors on the upper cabinets

(Image credit: Martin Moore)

'A dedicated utility zone can help simplify daily maintenance tasks or household repairs,' says Gabriella Dyson, Solved Section Editor. ‘I use this area as a central hub for all my home care needs, storing tools and DIY equipment. If something breaks or goes wrong in my home, I have a spot to manage repairs and locate the tools I need for the job.' 

'When you know exactly where everything is, from your screwdrivers to old user manuals, tackling home DIY projects becomes less of a chore,' she continues. 'Plus, having a designated utility zone helps keep other areas, like kitchen drawers, free from clutter.’

A dedicated utility zone also makes it easier to maintain and inspect your appliances, adds Jimmy Hiller, HVAC specialist. 'When all your major utilities are in one place, it becomes simpler to monitor their condition and perform regular maintenance.

Gabriella Dyson
Gabriella Dyson

Gabriella Dyson is Head of Solved at Homes & Gardens, editing and writing practical advice for homeowners in the process of cleaning, decluttering, or attempting home improvements and DIY projects. Gabriella previously worked on Homebuilding.com, writing features about issues surrounding historic and listed building projects.

7. It is adaptable to your changing needs

A small utility room idea with tall cabinet opened to show organised shelves

(Image credit: Tom Howley)

'An intelligently designed modern utility room or zone should evolve with your household's changing needs,' says real estate agent Heidi Hicks. 'Whether you opt to integrate smart home technologies or house additional utilities, this space should be easy to modify to suit your lifestyle.'

‘A utility zone can be a lifesaver for families with evolving needs,' agrees Gabriella Dyson, Solved Section Editor. 'I find it helpful to think of this space as a seasonal ‘behind-the-scenes' area. For instance, in summer, you can store your sunscreen here or any garden tools you don’t wish to store in your shed. In winter, this spot could serve as a drop-off point for gloves and scarves, meaning you always know where to find them in a pinch.'

'If your children have developed a keen interest in soccer, you could use this space to store and access all their gear without cluttering the rest of the house,' Gabriella continues. 'As they grow and their interests change, so will the contents of this zone. Of course, it’s important to stay on top of clutter and not use your utility zone as an excuse to hoard items.' 

The key is to regularly reevaluate and organize this space to ensure it remains functional and adaptable to your family’s ever-changing needs.

Adding a utility zone to your home is not just a practical addition; it's a lifestyle enhancement. By creating a dedicated space for chores and storage, this space can contribute to a more organized, clutter-free, and aesthetically pleasing home.

Lola Houlton
News writer

Lola Houlton is a news writer for Homes & Gardens. She has been writing content for Future PLC for the past six years, in particular Homes & Gardens, Real Homes and GardeningEtc. She writes on a broad range of subjects, including practical household advice, recipe articles, and product reviews, working closely with experts in their fields to cover everything from heating to home organization through to house plants. Lola is a graduate, who completed her degree in Psychology at the University of Sussex. She has also spent some time working at the BBC.

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