In the winter time you can still hang your clothes to dry if you have someplace to hang some clothesline or rope. I have two rows of clothesline hung in my basement and I love to hang my clothes to dry after washing them. I use an inexpensive fabric softener and leave them down there overnight to dry. In the morning I just fold them all and put them away. It's also nice because it helps put a little more moisture in our house. We do not have a humidifier and the air gets pretty dry so this really helps with that, too.
I bought a tention rod and hung it down the middle of the bath tub. When we bring clothes up from the basement (our good clothes) we hang them in the bathroom and this helps put moisture in the house also.
I live in a county where we have one of the highest electric rates around so I have hung up my clothes ever since we bought our house in 1991. My dryer has very little usage. There was a small line in the basement already so I use that as well as small plastic folding clothes hangers. They fold up and fit under the work station when not in use. I also find the plastic tube hangers with the little hooks are great for hanging nightgowns or anything that has loops. And during the nicer weather, I had a pulley line installed in my backyard. Using both the basement and outside has cut my electric bill by over 40%. Also, it helps cut down on wear and tear on clothes and towels. I love the fresh smell when they are hung outside.
Personally, I can't wait to remodel so I have a (gas) dryer connection.
First, I don't have a basement. I hang clothes in my bedroom.
When I hang clothes inside to dry, it takes 24 hours in the winter, and that's only if I have the ceiling fan on high all day. Also, mildew grows on the walls nearby.
When I hang clothes outside, it takes only one or two hours to dry (unless it starts raining), which is wonderful. But they don't smell "fresh" to me; they smell like dogs that have just come in from playing outside. (No, I and my neighbors do not have dogs. Maybe other people think dogs smell fresh.)
I have found that I can hang up my dress clothes (or casual for that matter) and prevent all wrinkles by pulling them directly from the rinse water without them going through the spin cycle. Sure, they are dripping wet and its a little messy, but if you hang them up (pants upside down), when they dry, they will be completely wrinkle-free. I also use fabric softner diluted in a spray bottle to freshen clothes and remove wrinkles.
I hang everything outside in winter. In summer, I hang everything that may fade, inside on hangers. I sew loops on all the clothing that needs to be hung this way. I bought a steel hook/hanger that fits over the door to hang clothes on. When it rains in summer, I hang everything that should have gone outside, in the laundry on a metal rack. We have dry winters in Pretoria with sunshine, so washing dries easily. In summer, we hace extremely hot days, so unless it also rains, washing dries within two hours' time.
I didn't know anyone had trouble drying clothes outside in the winter. I come from northern Wyoming, and with a breeze -or- wind, even clothes frozen stiff will get dry. Your fingers get really really cold hanging stuff out though! I also felt that hanging my undies out in the sun got the credit for finally stopping those yeast infections. I also always thought that I got a little exercise by stretching up to hang out the wash.
Exercise, economy (clothes less damaged and less electricity), health & sunshine, and freshness that lasts longer than any fabric softener! My we are soo blessed!