Preferred size for a walk-in closet?

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We're going to be putting a second story over our existing living, which will become our master bedroom. The new space will be a perfect rectangle, 23'x18'. This space is for the bedroom and closet. We're going to put in a walk-in closet, but are debating how big it needs to be. In our current bedroom we have a walk-in that's 8'x10', and it's much more space than we need. We keep suitcases and sports gear in there and it's nowhere near full.We are both VERY low-maintenance, and DH actually has more hanging clothing than I do.
I'm planning a closet with a center door, two hanging racks (one down each side), with some shelving above the racks and floor-to-ceiling shelves/storage on the far wall across from the door between the racks.
The architect is telling me that a walk-in "should" be "at least" 10'x12' or we "won't be able to sell the house". Since we plan to be carried out of here feet first, we couldn't care less about resale. Plus, I refuse to design new construction solely for "perceived" resale value when I plan to live here for at least 35 more years.
I don't care what the architect says, I neither want nor need a closet that big especially since we will still have the current master closet for storage when that room becomes the guest room, plus the tiny closets in the other two bedrooms (office and exercise room).
So...those of you with walk-in closets - how big are they and do you wish your closet was bigger or smaller?
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On 5/18/2010 8:49 PM, h wrote:

Just built a new house to my floorplan. There are only 2 bedrooms. The master has a 6 x 8 walk in with the door in the middle of the 8' side. We were going to have a 6' cloths rods on each of those walls, however, because of a duct chase we changed to having a 6' and an 8' on those 2 walls. The other bedroom has a 5 x 9 walk in with the door on the 5' wall to the left. The cloths rods go only down the 9' wall on the right side. Check out the floorplan at http://picasaweb.google.com/actodesco /FranklinHouse#5253349929054235314 which is shown with a 2' x 2' grid overlayed. We are 2 60+ retired people. There is plenty of room for us, however, we do have lots of basement space.
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h wrote:

Damn. Around here, 10x12 is considered a kid bedroom.
--
aem sends...

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Typical closet is about 28" deep. With a rack on each side that is 56" or about 5". You need at least the width of a door or 30" Lets round up to 3". That brings you to about 8". Depends on how much room you want in the aisle but 8" to 10" is not really huge.
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h replied to their own post. I wonder if h plonked themselve.
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h wrote:

Hi, The bigger, the better. There is no such thing as preferred size. Ours is 24x16 and wife pushed me out of there. She needs more space now. Clothing, shoes, accessories such as purse, etc. Things are spilling out of the closet, LOL!
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What Ive noticed is that the only space that gets used is space up against the wall. Mine is 6x8 and seems to be a good size. I try to limit the closet to clothes only keep soft luggage in the closet. Other luggage is kept in a cabinet in the garage. Of course wife has about 2/3 of it.
Jimmie
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wrote:

That's my experience as well. Of course, I really only use the closet to hang things up and store out-of-season clothes in bags on shelves. Any extra space gets luggage and sports gear. I'm leaning towards staying with 8'x10' and telling the architect to just get over it.
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Our house has the solution to that problem; two walk in closets in the master suite. ;-) Of course I got the smaller one, but that's OK, she got the linen chest (stupid builder didn't fit in a linen closet downstairs).
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I like a width of 7 feet. Allows clothes to be hung on each side with a 3 foot walkway. If I went wider I would jump to 12 feet with two aisles and hangers down the center as well. 14 foot would allow for two wide down the center. My current closet is 7X12. Plenty large in my single days. Starting to feel a little cramped with a woman using it too. I call them dressing rooms and include chairs, mirrors and built in cupboards. With everything in the closest the bedroom can be a modest size.
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LOL. As the female half of the couple who will be using the closet, I can tell you that DH has more clothes, is much more appearance-obsessed, and takes up a lot more space! I just want a rack on each side with shelves above and about 3' of floor-to-ceiling shelving on the far wall between the two racks. Sounds like my "too-small-closet" will work just fine.
Thanks for the comments!
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You're not putting in a bathroom? Personally I'd take an end off your original retangle and divide it between a walk in closet and a bath. And I'd also plan a stackable washer/dryer hookup in the closet. The laundry hookup is probably more personal preference but once you have a laundry closer to where you remove and put on your clothes you'll never go back :-) As to the bath, I can't imagine having to go downstairs to use a bathroom.
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We already have a full bath upstairs in the origanal section of the house. The one-story living room was added in the early-1900s. We'll be adding on a much larger two-story addition in 2012 which will have a small, separate-entrance office/client area with a half bath, and a 24x40 garage down, with a master bath, commercial washer and dryer, and an enormous industrial workspace upstairs.
By the time both construction projects are completed we'll have more than doubled the size of the house and my workspace can move from the garage into the house, where I'll have plumbing and real heat! I'm so sick of running down the stairs and across the deck and into the house every time I need the bathroom. In the winter I have to shovel my way to and from. I'm SO not going to miss that! Also, having a separate office for clients means that I won't have to make sure the entire downstairs is pristine in case they have to use the bathroom.
We're doing it in two stages because the existing detached garage will need to be knocked down for the new addition, and I wouldn't have any place to work for at least a month, plus no place to store my equipment. Once the new master bedroom is built I'll move my work space in there for 18 months until we move to stage two.
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h wrote:

For what you want, it should be 6'-7' wide...24"-36" aisle plus 24" hanging space each side. Length up to you. Note that your shelving on the wall opposite entry won't be very useable because much it will be obscured behind the hanging racks.
When we built I included two closets (his & hers) like that...each is 6 1/2' wide x 8' long. The hanging space was partioned into thirds so that I could inlude multi-level hanging. One side has a small, built in armoire about 60" high in one of the thirds, shelves above; another of the thirds has a low set of drawers with hanging space for long items above. The top tier of all hanging spaces is at about 6' and above that there are shelves for little used items. The ceiling slopes crosswise and varies from 8' to 9 1/2'. The end opposite the entry has a full length mirror about 30" x 72". The floor within the hanging spaces is about 2" higher than the aisle floor; that's so dust and tracked in dirt will tend to stay in the aisle where it is easy to clean up.
Our closets hold a LOT of stuff and are easy and convenient to use.
--

dadiOH
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I don't see why h is even asking. She says she is happy with the closet size she already has, doesn't care about resale, and intends to live there the rest of her life. She disregarded the architect's advice, which I think was valid. So, then just build whatever she wants. What does it matter what any of us think?
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wrote:

I don't see why h is even asking. She says she is happy with the closet size she already has, doesn't care about resale, and intends to live there the rest of her life. She disregarded the architect's advice, which I think was valid. So, then just build whatever she wants. What does it matter what any of us think?
My thoughts exactly...
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Because resizing the closet later would be quite expensive and I want to make sure I'm not making a mistake. So far, no one has come up with any reason that a closet should be bigger than 8x10. At least not a reason that is valid for my lifestyle.
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You just getting a bunch of opinions, some for and some alternatives. But they are just opinions. You are still left with the same choices, make it the size you want or make it bigger. Frankly I never make "bad resale" decisions about any home I own. No matter what my plans. You could die next week in a car wreck and your wife might decide that house is not so suitable all by herself. You can't predict the future so don't put up barricades that someone will regret later. Even if it's not you that regrets it.
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Absolutely. These days, you may find yourself moving for a job. Never close off options unnecessarily. Do what you want but make sure it's not "too weird". At least design in some easy way out. Bedrooms without closets are one of the no-nos, in my book.
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