1. Add a nice rug. A rug is a simple way to decorate the entryway and keep dirt to a minimum, allowing family members and visitors a chance to clean off their shoes before entering the house. Having a place to sit down and remove shoes is a great investment for the family. A bench works well or a couple of chairs.
2. Have a place for each person to put their shoes when they take them off. Color-coded bins help younger children to know where their shoes belong. This central location can help for when children are looking for their shoes each morning. It is keep to keep the area clean and organized daily.
3. Have a designated place where kids put backpacks, sports gear, jackets, umbrellas, etc. when they come home. Many people use their mud rooms for this, if you don’t have one, create an area near the front or back door for hanging coats up and purchase (or build) a bench with storage units underneath for putting other gear.
4. Keep wet umbrellas in a plastic shopping bag to catch the water. Having a container full of plastic bags near the door will help. (Be sure to check when the umbrellas are dry to throw the water out before mold sets in.)
5. Have a place to hang your keys as you are coming in. If you keep them in one place, you won’t spend time looking for them. Have one place for charging a cell phone or PDA. In this same place as the keys, place your sunglasses as well.
6. Make sure you have an area for items that need to be taken care of the next day. Dry cleaning, library books, etc. need to have a place by the door so you will remember them on the way out.