What Is A Mudroom And Do You Need One?

You may not know what a mud room is, but if you have kids and pets, you need one. With interior design, a mudroom is a great way to add value to your home. If you wanted to take a cheaper mudroom design path, convert one area into a mud room. A mudroom is also about storage, so think from top to bottom and optimize your chosen area.

The mudroom is a decompression chamber. Before entering a home, people decompress and remove shoes, hats, and jackets. When returning outside they can open a coat closet and find warm clothing, and then put their muddy boots on, and other outdoor accessories.

With a mud room, you could do those things while storing other everyday items. A mudroom designed with care and love will be useful for your family and guests. If you don’t have one, choose a dedicated space and let your DIY mudroom ideas fly.

What Is A Mudroom

Here, we’ll go over what a mud room is, how to create a small mudroom, and before you know it, you’ll have a new side gig as an interior designer working on paid commissions. Don’t think for a second that it couldn’t happen to you. 

History Of The Mud Room

Mudrooms were common in farm and manor houses in the 19th century. Farmhouses had a back room where farmers would remove their dirty clothes and muddy boots before entering their homes. The mudroom area wasn’t covered and usually had concrete floors. Many homes in the southern region were equipped with a makeshift mudroom and were ideal for storage.

The space was equipped with a water pump located next to a back entrance where people could wash their hands and faces. Farmers needed a way to refresh themselves at the midway point each day.

Mudrooms appeared in many homes beginning in the 1950s. Tract housing emerged, and suburban homes became bigger. A home’s entryway was a de facto mudroom. American interior design started to include the space, taking full advantage of its benefits. 

What Is A Mudroom?

A mudroom is an entryway that functions like a drop zone or storage station. The name comes from how dirt and mud are tracked inside, leaving the entryway a mess. However, keeping mud trapped in one space is the purpose of a mudroom. Interior design is clever like that.

If family members walk into your living room or kitchen from outside, your house will soon be a mudroom. Keeping your floors clean is the best way to keep your mudroom sparkling. You need an area where you can keep everyday items, vintage items, and out of season items throughout the year and not have to worry about finding them. 

What Is In A Mudroom?

What Is A Mudroom
Burton Works: Designer Cabinetry

Every home’s design is different and so is the mudroom space. What home couldn’t use an extra coat closet for storage?

You don’t need to use every idea listed below in your mudroom. A mudroom designed for the entire family would serve a double duty purpose and would be a great place to practice your DIY interior design skills.

Here is a list of guidelines to help you create your mudroom. 


A rug is necessary if you want to protect your durable flooring and keep outside dirt in your mudroom area. A small rug in front of the door or a runner that extends all the way across, in case someone doesn’t take their shoes off.

Shoes Coats

This is for strangers and family members alike and is a great mudroom design idea. Keep the shoes near the ground and the coat’s shoulder height to make things easy on every. Use a rack, bin, or shelf, but whatever you decide, there should always be a place for people to hang their coats up. 

It’s a good idea to have a lower rack for children if you have kids. When you have children, you’ll never run out of mudroom ideas for storage. For example, you can use baskets for hats and gloves during the winter months. 

Wherever you put your shoes would be a good place for a dog bed. Remember, it’s about storage at the end of the day.

Cabinet Fronts

The cabinet fronts are for the family. It can be helpful if either each person has their own shelf or if each category has its shelf. You can label them, put color-code them, or just teach the family what goes where. 

Mudroom Cubbies

When you have organized shelves, they might become overlooked. Mudroom cubbies would provide easy access to your vintage items if you wanted. If you don’t have a designated space, things could get unorganized. So, have a few containers that could serve double duty for your out of season items.  

Built In Bench

If you have a mudroom bench or special seat with an upholstered cushion where people can remove shoes, then they’re likely to use it. You see, this is the real beauty of mudroom designs. There aren’t any rules, and when you embrace this notion, you’ll surprise yourself with the things that you can do. There are all kinds of storage opportunities waiting to be untapped.

While your kids take their shoes off, older people will need a seat. You’ll want to make sure the bench has an upholstered cushion for added comfort or for those who are recovering from surgery, for example. It’s better to have more than one seat or a bench for when you have multiple guests.

Building A Mudroom

What Is A Mudroom

Now that we’ve gone over the things that are added to a mudroom, let’s talk about the things that are part of the mudroom. This is what you’ll need to focus on when you’re building your mudroom. 

Durable Flooring

While a bathroom floor may not need to be sturdy, it does need to be waterproof. While a living room floor may need to be sturdy, it doesn’t need to be waterproof. But when it comes to a mudroom, you need the best of both worlds. 

Attractive Walls

This is the first room people will see, so make sure that the walls aren’t loud. 


An entryway in general needs good lighting. It needs to work well, emit a lot of light, and look eye-catching. While lighting in other rooms may not be noticeable, lighting in entryways is never missed. So make it count. 

Space For A Mudroom

What Is A Mudroom
A. B. Lake Construction Corp

If you’re struggling with limited space, you’ll need to think outside the box, or in this case, inside the box for storage ideas. Interior designers grapple with the same problem, so check out a few sites for inspiration on your mudroom design.


If you’re short on space, building an add-on is by far your best option. You don’t need much space for a mudroom, so the costs will be minimal. 

Convert Your Porch

If you’re not one who enjoys sitting on their front porch, then turn the space into a shoe storage area, for example. You could also dedicate the space for your pets and include a dog bed.

A path to your front door should remain clear. For extra storage, don’t hesitate to hang a few wicker baskets for your everyday items. If you don’t have extra containers, check out your local big box stores and see what they have on sale. 

Extra Space 

If you have a large living room or kitchen, you can always turn part of it into a mudroom. You just have to add a wall, even if it’s just a partial wall. If you have a large family, it’s guaranteed that you have some space that you’re not using. 

Laundry Room 

If you have a laundry room or other small room that serves only one purpose, then consider turning it into a mudroom. You can leave the washer and dryer in it because mudrooms make great laundry rooms. 

Small Bathroom

If your laundry room won’t work, then an extra small bathroom would be the perfect place for a makeshift mudroom. 

Garage Area

Take out a corner for a mudroom! You can even take out half of it, or the whole thing for a mudroom, though extra large mudrooms are kind of pointless. Use the extra space for something else. 

Mudroom Alternatives

What Is A Mudroom
Moser Architects PLLC

If you don’t have space or money for a whole mudroom, there are still ways you can achieve the same things without one. There are only two things you need to focus on. Having space to put on muddy boots and coats is what it’s all about. 

Mudroom Closet

One of the easiest things to do is create a mud closet. This just means that you convert a closet near an exterior door into a place to put muddy boots. Keep rugs on the inside so it will be easy to clean up. 

Mudroom Cabinet

A mud cabinet is just like a closet only it is designed to blend in with your kitchen. Take extra cabinet space, preferably near the door, and use it for outdoor wear. This is a great way to keep the dirty boots hidden. 

Reading Nook

You could very well have a nook in your hallway and not even know it. You can either build a reading nook or use one you already have. Make sure there are good cabinets beside it or simply use a bench with storage. You could use the area as a place to keep miscellaneous items organized. 

The best part about this is how it gives people somewhere to take their shoes off. The reading nook doubles as a seat for people to take their shoes off and on.

Wall Hooks And Lockers

Hooks are great for bags, backpacks, keys, and light jackets. Add lockers and you’ll have a mudroom equipped to handle your daughter’s softball team. All you would need is a long bench that comfortably sat five people and your house would be a hit. The dedicated space in your house is a high traffic area for the entire family, so you should be prepared for anything. 

If you can’t install them, use wicker baskets. Either way, now you have two ideas that are cute additions to any mudroom, so no matter where your entryway is, it will look good in the right color. 

Mudroom decor inspiration

Rug And Shelf

If you’re short on space, all you need is a rug and a shelf. A rug so that people can wipe their shoes off and have a shelf so they can stack their shoes. A shelf will also provide space in your house for miscellaneous items.

Stairwell Cubby

If your entryway is next to a stairwell then you’re in luck. People create little closets under their stairs. Well, it works better as a closet than a bedroom, so use one for your shoes!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)FAQ

How Much Does It Cost To Add A Mudroom?

Most house owners spend between $8,000 and $16,000 for a 50-square foot mud room addition, at an average of $12,000. You could pay as low as $4,500 for a space of equal size, but larger rooms or bump-out additions could run upwards of $30,000.

How Much Do Mudroom Cabinets Cost?

The cost to install cabinets in your mud room would be between $500 to $1,200 per foot. Steel cabinets would run between $1,000 to $1,500 per foot. For a 6-foot wall, you could pay between $3,000 and $9,000.

How Much Does It Cost To Add A Mudroom In A Garage? 

Adding a small mudroom inside the garage will cost between $8,000 and $16,000. Expect a lower price when adding basic changes, and higher costs when adding a wall. The cost to install a new wall would be $1,800 on average.

Before you begin, you’ll need to measure everything in your house. How high is your ceiling? What is the width of your floor space? Such measurements are important. At the end of the day, your mudroom should be functional. 

Does A Mudroom Add Value?

Mudrooms are functional. The rooms offer organization and storage to potential house buyers. Not only does it add value, but it helps protect your home. If you have renovated or are planning to remodel, you’ll want to maintain your home’s value.

Do They Make 3D Entryway Mats For Mudrooms?

Technology has arrived at the modern house. Believe it or not, 3D entryway mats are popular mud room features. They’re easy to find and come in many shapes and sizes. 

Mudroom Conclusion

No matter what you decide, if you like your mud room, entryway, or laundry room, nothing else matters. With mudroom ideas for your house, it’s anything goes. After all, it’s a mudroom, which means it doesn’t get more informal. Interior design is about expressing yourself and doing what you want and not what social media tells you to do.