Shared Housing

What Is In-Unit Laundry and What Are the Pros and Cons?

Alcove Team · 6/10/22

What Is In-Unit Laundry and What Are the Pros and Cons?

When you’re looking for a place to live, one of the most crucial features is laundry. Considering the type of laundry access and how that will fit into your lifestyle is important in order to guarantee the most comfortable and efficient use of your time, money, and space.

Laundry access can be in-unit, on-site, off-site, or potentially providing your own washer and dryer with hookups. This article will break down the different options that may be available to you and the pros and cons of each type of laundry access you should consider when finding a new rental home.

In-Unit Laundry

In-unit laundry is when your home has laundry facilities within your apartment or house. Usually, both a washer and dryer are included. This means it is exclusively yours and offers the ease of being always available to you all the time. In-unit laundry is already there when you move in and will require the least amount of effort. 

Having in-unit laundry also means that you won’t have any extra major costs associated with doing your laundry. This amenity is already included in your rent and won’t be an added cost for you to add in each month.

Washer-Dryer Hookups

Similar to in-unit laundry, washer dryer hookups allow the option to provide your own washer and dryer with the same in-unit benefits once they are installed. Washer-dryer hookups mean that you will have to find the appliances on your own and maintain them.

One of the benefits of washer-dryer hookups is that you can choose the exact appliances that you have. This means you can pick the style, brand, options, and energy efficiency.

Another option with washer-dryer hookups is to rent the appliances. Furniture and appliance rental companies will also make the setup and maintenance easier. This is also typically a more affordable option than buying. If you are not sure if your next home will have hookups this is also a great option.

You can also explore used options at local appliance stores, yard sales, or even on sites like Facebook Marketplace or eBay.  

Onsite Laundry

Onsite laundry also tends to be another convenient option for renters. Onsite laundry means that there is laundry access on the premises or within your building. Having this amenity offers the benefit that you won’t have to go anywhere to find a laundromat which can save you time and energy.

With onsite laundry, you generally will have to pay for each load of laundry you wash. Generally, rent without laundry in-unit is more affordable, however, you will have the added cost each month to keep in mind. You won’t have any extra energy costs and the close proximity can make this a great option for some individuals.

Offsite Laundry

Some rentals may not offer laundry services at all. This means that you will have to find a laundromat or use other laundry services elsewhere. This tends to be the least desirable laundry option since you have to travel outside of your home or building routinely for laundry.

Shared Laundry Considerations

When living in a complex with shared laundry, there are several common tips to keep in mind. 

Being mindful of time is essential. When using a shared laundry facility, paying attention to cycle times is important in order to be respectful to others who may need to use the facilities. There is also the potential that someone might move your items if you don’t move them in a timely manner. This means that you need to have the time reserved to do your laundry in its entirety.

When using a shared laundry facility, it’s also important to recognize that it is not your own personal laundry room. This means you may want to do things like sorting, folding, or treating stains at home before.

Deciding which laundry option is the best for you

It’s important to make your rental laundry decision based on what is important to you and what you can realistically afford.


It’s important to think about time in regards to getting your laundry to the facilities if needed, the time to stay in a shared facility, or even driving to a laundromat. 

When using a shared laundry facility, they usually have certain operating hours which means that you can’t always do your laundry at your desired time. If you have in-unit laundry or hookups, you can do your laundry whenever is convenient for you.

If you do not have a lot of extra time for household chores like laundry, in-unit laundry is likely the best option for you.


Laundry options can come with different costs associated. Laundry in-unit may be more costly upfront, but you won’t have any extra monthly costs like shared machine costs. Laundry onsite or offsite may be more affordable but cost more of your time as well.

Still deciding where to live?

Check out Alcove’s co-living options which can be more affordable than a studio apartment and might be the right choice for you!