A Bedroom Is Not Just A Space For A Bed

Real Estate Broker/Owner with HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 311291


Following up on last night's blog "what is a bedroom?" this  topic was a discussion on today's radio show. 


all about real estate

What defines a bedroom?


It would be nice if the real estate community could decide exactly what makes a bedroom and stick to it.

Here are some of the pointers. Remember different regions have different rules so check your area and see if any of these apply.


-The room must have a minimum square footage, usually 70-80.

-The room must have a minimum ceiling height...usually 7'.

-The room needs at least a 7' x 7' space  with  7' high ceiling.  You cannot finish  a room with lower ceilings and call it a kid's bedroom. You cannot call a hallway a bedroom.

-The room needs to have a door and a window for an emergency escape. However there are plenty of homes that were built with small high windows, especially ranchers. I have not seen these home homes listed with zero bedrooms.

-The room must have a permanent heating source. A space heater  does not count.

-The room that is adjacent and opens to a garage is not acceptable.

-Smoke detectors are required and some areas have a code that requires hard wiring.

- Closets. What we have all been taught is that a bedroom must have one. Even though most do I did not find that code requirement.

 -The number of bedrooms has to match the septic system capacity.


How do you define a bedroom?

A bed does not a bedroom make!




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Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Hi Margaret

Yep that pretty much agrees with what I have learned. Having a closet does NOT make it a bedroom. And the requirements for egress through a window are pretty clear. No window, no bedroom.  bedroom accessed from the garage is non-conforming. The SF issue was a new one for me but I have an inspector who knows the building code. And do appraisers pay attention to these requirmements?


Sep 17, 2017 08:16 PM #1
Steffy Hristova
HomeSmart Elite Group Tempe AZ Tel: 480-966-9353 - Tempe, AZ
Tempe AZ Realtor - Your Home Close to Your Work!

A few days ago I noticed on our  Arizona Regional ARMLS website there was a category "Bedroom Definition".  The answer was that there is no official definition of a bedroom. I am not sure why a permanent source of heating is a requirement - a space heater may be just fine, if all other requirements are present.

Sep 17, 2017 08:50 PM #2
Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

I pretty much agree with your definition of a bedroom.  Closets and doors, are an important component.  The first house I owned didn't have central heating. We had two wall heaters.  One in the living room, and another in the hall.  In 1200 square feet it was all we needed.

Sep 18, 2017 03:25 AM #3
Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome

Myrl Jeffcoat Sounds like a very cozy place to call home!

Sep 18, 2017 09:15 AM #4
Dick Greenberg
New Paradigm Partners LLC - Fort Collins, CO
Northern Colorado Residential Real Estate

Hi Margaret - In our market, a conforming bedroom must have a closet and an escape window - and that's about it. If it doesn't have those two items, we can still call it a bedroom as long as we identify it as non-conforming - so we often see very, um, interesting, yes, that's the word, interesting bedrooms.

Sep 18, 2017 12:39 PM #5
Anna Banana Kruchten CRB, CRS 602-380-4886
Phoenix Property Shoppe - Phoenix, AZ
Arizona's Top Banana!

 Hi Margaret - A bedroom here has a closet and a window that one can get out if there is an emergency. I do on occasion find people taking liberty with what is actually a real bedroom. I saw a photo today with a room that was maybe 6x6 and I looked at it twice....and thought that's no bedroom. NEXT.....

Sep 18, 2017 05:00 PM #6
Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome

Dick Greenberg So do you list the home as a five bedroom or 3 bedrooms and 2 non conforming bedrooms??

Sep 18, 2017 05:27 PM #7
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Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland

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