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Tips for Sharing a Laundry Room

Doing laundry isn't something that most people spend all day dreaming about. No one says to themselves, "Hey, I can't wait to spend several minutes sorting through stinky clothing and then throwing it into a machine that makes ridiculous amounts of noise." It's even less fun when you have to share that truly remarkable experience with other folks and their stinky vestments.

Sharing anything, especially things that take tremendous patience and matter, is an art. The laundry room isn't a place where exciting things happen and laundry can be a particularly sensitive for people, since some important (and embarassing) things pass through it. This combination makes it easy for tempers to flare over laundry room related practices and events.

Split It Up

Whenever benefits are shared, costs are shared. No exceptions. So when considering how to handle sharing a laundry room, a good idea can be to set up a price sharing template. Laundry rooms need detergent, repair to machinery and other things. Those things cost money and the more people feel like they're paying for the supplies of others, the more tension builds. A good idea is to chart potential costs and have an idea of who is paying which portion of what. You can also operate on a schedule, though I think method leaves open more potential for abuse.


Scheduling use of the laundry can be crucial if you're dealing with busy or contentious people. If you schedule the use of the facilities carefully and stick to the schedule, you can avoid a lot of the "why did you take my wet clothes out of the washer!?!" moments.

Get a sense of everyone's schedule, create a laundry usage schedule based on them and allow for alternate times as the situation permits. Ruthlessly adhere to this schedule, adjusting only when all parties involved are ok with it. As long you live with adults and not adolescents, after some initial hassle, things should take care of themselves.

Keep in mind that these are just some ideas for making your laundry life less of a hassle. Adjust these ideas to fit your schedule and make them work for you. Good luck and happy washing!

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