If your apartment comes with an in-unit washer and dryer, then it will almost always be free (less any utilities that you pay for). However, if the washer and dryer units are in a common area or you have “on-site laundry facilities”, then typically you will pay per load. This pay-per-load option helps to cover the costs associated with:
- Purchasing the washer and dryer machines
- Regular cleaning and maintenance of the machines
- Cost of water to run
- Cost of gas/electric to power
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The typical cost per load is between $1.5 and $4. In some instances, you may even be charged based on time. Usually, you can pay with quarters, but some more modern communities have machines on-site or pay via mobile app functions.
How does Payment Work?
There are several ways you can pay. Some apartments have quarter-operated machines where you bring a bag of quarters to the laundry room to run the load. In other cases, there could be a machine on the wall where you load up your ‘laundry card’ to run the load. Lastly, some apartments have a smartphone app where you can load dollars directly onto your virtual account, and start the load without having to insert any cards or quarters. You can ask in advance how your apartment community supports payments for the machines.
Benefits of an Onsite Laundry
- Massive time saver and more convenient
- No need to lug your clothes to an external location
- Usually more cost-effective
- In higher-end communities, you might only have to share with a few other residents as opposed to all residents.
Benefits of an Onsite Laundry vs. In-Unit
- Usually cheaper than having in-unit laundry, thus lowering your monthly rent
- Space saver – you now have more space to store things in your apartment
- Convenience – when you move out, you don’t have to worry about bringing the units with you (as compared to situations where the apartment comes with in-unit hook up only and you must supply the machines).