Rooms With Many Functions

In smaller homes, having multi-purpose rooms is very helpful. Home built by Timberpeg Independent Rep, Smith & Robertson, Inc.

Last week, we discussed the etymology and evolution of a few less-common rooms that may be found in the home. However, the general trend in the housing market is towards slightly smaller homes. This reduction in size means that for most homeowners, rooms need to be more functional and be utilized more often to make sense in the modern home. One way to accommodate this trend is through multi-function rooms that take on the roles previously served by multiple rooms. Here are a few examples of combination rooms that pull double duty.


In the winter, features like mudrooms become all the more important. In the winter, features like mudrooms become all the more important. Home built by Timberpeg Independent Rep, Old Hampshire Designs and designed by Bonin Architects. 

This combination room may seem like the most obvious choice, primarily since it is a very common room in homes. The mudroom is a great space to have to keep dirty clothes and shoes from soiling the inside of the home. It is usually placed in transitional space between the garage or porch and the public spaces of the home. However, since the mudroom does not need a great deal of space by itself, it is often paired with the laundry as well. Especially if you participate in outdoor sports, it is great to be able to unload your dirty outerwear immediately upon arriving home.


The pantry space (seen just beyond the kitchen in the above photo) in this Martha’s Vineyard home also houses the washer and dryer. Home designed by Geoffrey D. Thors, AIA 

As we discussed last October, the pantry has undergone a resurgence in popularity lately. No longer just a place to store food, modern pantries also have sinks and dishwashers for food preparation and cleaning. With the plumbing already in place, the pantry is a great place to site the laundry room as well. The counter space and sink can be used both for laundry and food prep, saving space and conveniently consolidating these tasks near the kitchen.


A bump out houses a desk and makes the room much more spacious as a bedroom in this Virginia hybrid timber frame home. Timberpeg Independent Rep, Smith & Robertson, Inc.

Guest rooms are wonderful to have the few times a year when you have visitors, but often see little use throughout the rest of the year. In contrast, an office space may get used much of the year but not when you are entertaining guests. Combining these two rooms makes a great deal of sense, but a few design choices help them mesh together. One way to accomplish the bedroom office is to site the desk in a small closet so it can be closed off from the room when guests arrive. A bump out can also house the desk and make the room function better for guests.

Fondly referred to as the “Libing Room,” this homeowner combined the Dining Room and Library. Timberpeg Independent Rep, Smith & Robertson, Inc.

We hope this look at multi-function rooms has shown you how to get the maximum use out of all the rooms in your home. If you’re looking to design a new timber frame home, with rooms either single-minded or with many uses, please contact Timberpeg today.