Laundry, it’s one of those necessary evils that just need to be dealt with. Sure you can put it off a bit longer by purchasing new underwear or even going without but eventually the task needs completed.

Family needs are different. Something may work for one person but not another. I spend most days in other people’s homes and laundry seems to be a point of pain for many. Need it be the action of sorting, transferring, and folding to putting it all away. I have collected tips from clients that I hope help others.

I am not going to touch on tips such as stain removing, wool dryer balls, ironing, hanging to dry, etc. This is about keeping up with laundry so that there are no longer piles taking up precious space in your home.

First off, a load of clothes is not fully completed until the load of laundry is folded and put away. There is no stopping in the middle to deal with later. One reader commented “I put all the dirty towels in one load. The towels go straight from the washer to dryer to being hung back up and ready to use. No folding necessary. The same goes with sheets. Strip the bed, wash, dry and remake the bed.”

Also, laundry day is not realistic unless you are staying home and that is your only task for the day. If you can make that schedule work for you then go for it but most people have too many other responsibilities that make one laundry day a week feasible. Do some laundry every day. Let’s be real and think about the huge amount of time spent every day playing on your phone, looking on social media. We have time. One or two loads of laundry a day is completely feasible. Suzanne from Brecksville stated her life hack is her washer has a delay start. “I load it, delay it to start an hour before I get up and then into the dryer. One load is done before I leave for work. I use it when I’m out running errands too. The delay start is my life saver and laundry doesn’t pile up!”

“Doing laundry everyday means you can have less clothes. I don’t need or want 15 pairs of socks or underwear.” Says Linda from Bath

“My husband and I created a chart so we know what gets laundered that day.” Says Jen from Aurora

“Setting a timer is key” says Caroline from Solon. “Transferring as soon as the load is done keeps the process moving.”

Figuring out sorting seems to be crucial for creating a functional laundry plan. I have seen sorting and washing all underwear and socks together. I have seen washing each family members laundry separate, therefore goes straight from the dryer to the bedroom to fold and put away. Sorting by color does not seem to be of importance to some. Each member of the family is assigned a day of the week that their laundry is done. Does one big sorting station work best? Or do you prefer each member of the family has their own hamper? Figuring out the system that works best for your family is key. Melissa from Chagrin Falls, Mother of five seems to have figured out what works best for her. “Clothes come off their bodies and I expect them to bring directly to laundry room and sort right into dirty clothes baskets. I have a basket for darks, lights, colors, socks & underwear, sheets & towels, and baby linens. I put pictures on the front of the baskets so no excuse for the ones who can’t read! White baskets for clean and blue for dirty.”

Take time to teach children what goes into the hamper and how often. Do you want them to wear a clean pair of pajamas nightly or can they wear the same pair for several days? The same goes for jeans or sweaters or church clothes that are worn for an hour or so a week.

Children are absolutely able to sort, fold and put away clothes. Everyone wears the clothes, everyone should help. “Many hands make light work” says Anna from Hudson. “The whole family knows the 20 minutes before bed is for folding and putting away laundry. We work together and it’s done in a snap.”

Melissa from Chagrin Falls no longer takes the time to fold the clothes of her five children. She sorts the laundry from the dryer to the child’s designated basket and the child is then responsible for putting it away in their drawers.

It’s essential you create a system that works best for your family. I love this rule that Patty from Strongsville follows “I never put a load of laundry into the dryer unless the load before it is folded and put away.”

Thank you for reading and best wishes in the New Year.