What’s a drop zone, you ask?

It’s that place in your home where, as you first enter it, you dump keys, coats, umbrellas, backpacks, dog leashes, boots, and grocery bags. And those are only a few items that people instantly drop zonediscard once they’re home.

Most drop zones aren’t thought out and intentional. For many of us, it’s that oversized bowl on the kitchen counter that catches everyone’s keys and junk mail. Or a hall table that collects baseball gloves.

We all can do better than that, and when you plan your new custom Florida home, establishing an arrival drop zone is the perfect way to do it. Designating a spot for everyone in the household to stash their stuff makes it easier to find those items later. It also keeps clutter off kitchen counters and hall tables.

Here are some tips for creating a workhorse drop zone.

Choose practicality over trends

It’s tempting to launch an all-out search on Pinterest and Instagram to find a jillion examples of other people’s drop zones.

Instead, set a phone alarm and search for a specific amount of time. You’ll uncover plenty of inspiration in, say, 30 minutes. And always, always value function over form. Adding the form can come later, once you nail how hardworking you’d like your drop zone to be.

Just remember you need it to do much more than look trendy.

Organization is paramount

Otherwise, why bother, right?

Creating a workhorse drop zone starts with what you’d like it to contain.

If you’re building that new custom Florida home, you might want a place for everyone to hang their wet beach towels upon entering the house. If you have kids, drop zones are a great weapon against them dumping the day’s necessities (bookbags, homework, sports gear, etc) all over the house.

Having a place for each family member to store their things will make hectic daily schedules easier to navigate. Drop zone storage and usability eliminates the last-minute panic over lost scarves, baseball caps, and misplaced vehicle keys. The organization it breeds is an added bonus.

Make it easy to use

Since daily life demands items such as backpacks, reusable shopping bags, jackets, hats, and flip-flops, one way to contain it all is to establish a useable spot just inside the garage entrance. Or, wherever most family members will enter and exit the house.

A drop zone can share space with a utility/laundry room, or be a separate area.

For example, consider accessible, built-in cubbyholes or open shelving that contains space for every family member to toss their stuff. Attractive wall hooks snag jackets and jump ropes. A long bench below provides a comfortable spot to sit down to remove shoes.

Another option is cabinets — to conceal that everyday clutter! — or lockers large enough to hide baseball bats, golf bags and Fido’s toys.

Once you determine your drop zone’s function and components, personalize it. Stencil family members’ names above their section, shelf or cubbyhole. Paint everyone’s portion a different color. Or, keep it uniform in color, style, and design with the rest of your interior spaces.

Ready for your new custom Florida home? Start the ICI Homes conversation here. opens in a new window