Creating a new bedroom? Here's how much space you really need
Who wouldn’t wish for a large and luxurious bedroom that satisfies all R&R dreams? Unfortunately, most of us can afford only a minimal and purely functional one. In fact, ever since the pandemic, the bedroom isn’t just about the R&R for many of us - it has been invaded by the work-from-home and has become the primary or secondary workspace too!
When planning the layout of a house, architects are bound by building codes, and are expected to follow the standard or larger-than-standard sizes for bedrooms. However, there may be times when you - the layperson who lives in that house - may need to customize spaces to suit your needs. This could be anything from dividing a room into two, converting a non-bedroom into a bedroom, making space for an additional member of the household, or even converting your bedroom into a bedroom cum home office. More often than not, these customizations involve deviating from the standard norms due to space constraints and ad hoc needs.
Minimum and Standard Bedroom Size Guide
If you’re looking to remodel your bedroom to make custom modifications and adjustments, this bedroom size guide is for you. Here, we’ve included a number of different layouts with the minimum and standard sizes for various types of beds and bedroom needs.
We understand and have kept in mind that not everyone has the luxury of space, especially in large cities where rents are shooting for the stars! So here, we’ll talk about the minimum spaces you need to make the bedroom functional.
How to decide your bedroom size
One defining factor when deciding your bedroom size is, obviously, the bed size you need. Next, you need clearance space around the bed for circulation and access to the bed. The bed size and clearance add up to the minimum bedroom size. If you wish to include other furniture – a desk, sofa, dresser, wardrobe, etc. – the minimum bedroom size will increase accordingly.
Standard bedroom size in American homes according to building codes
The building code book is like the Bible for architects - it defines the standard sizes required for different rooms as per legal guidelines. A standard bedroom is 130sqft which is roughly 10’x13’, and includes basic amenities like a full-sized bed of 6’x 7’ and a closet. The clearance is 2’4” to 2’6” on either side of the bed and 3’ at the end of the bed.
Minimum functional bedroom size
The basic formula for deciding the minimum bedroom size is the bed size + clearance of 2’4”-2’6” on either side and end of the bed.
You could even cut the clearance to 2’ or 24” for tighter spaces. For a single bed or a crib (maybe even a double bed – not recommended, but if you must absolutely stretch the limits!), you could also have one side and both ends of the bed against walls and have clearance on only one side. Our advice in such cases is to ensure that you include at least one window for ventilation and a fire escape.
Word of advice: Keep in mind that according to the building code, the minimum size of a bedroom is 70sqft. Also, to qualify as a legally habitable bedroom, the room should include an egress/escape window and a closet. Note that some of our examples here may be smaller than code recommendations and may not include a closet. These are minimal-sized rooms created by partitioning an existing room with the help of temporary walls.
It’s a good idea to be aware and use your judgment when remodeling your spaces to avoid legal implications.
Standard bed sizes available in America
Here are the various standard bed sizes typically available in North America. The average human-height may vary slightly from country to country, so check with your furniture supplier if you’re from another continent. The clearance, however, should remain the same everywhere.
Word of advice: It’s best to get out a measuring tape and check your existing room dimensions to understand what’s already working for you and how much leeway you have to shrink or expand your bed size or bed clearance. This is especially so for spaces where you’re planning to go tighter than the standard dimensions!
Minimum bedroom sizes for different bedroom requirements
Minimum bedroom size for a single bed
The minimum size of a bedroom as per code is 70sqft, which translates to 7’x10’. This is a comfortable size to include a single bed, a closet, and a small desk. For a smaller size, for example – a bedroom within another room built with temporary walls, a minimum size of 5’2”x6’3” might be sufficient.
Minimum bedroom size for a full bed
Leaving a clearance of 2’6” on either side and end of the bed, a bedroom of 9’6” x 8’9” is the minimum size to include a full-sized bed. You may also be able to fit a bedside table within the clearance.
Minimum bedroom size for a Queen bed and wardrobe/dresser
To include a Queen bed with a 2’6” clearance on either side and at the end of the bed, as well as a standard-sized wardrobe or dresser, consider a minimum bedroom size of 12’ x 9’2”.
Minimum bedroom size for a Queen bed and home office
If, like many, you’ve also been working from home since the pandemic, chances are you’ve been working from your dining table or the living room so far. But now you may feel it’s high time to finally set up that work desk and allocate some space for a proper home office, even if it’s only a portion of your bedroom.
To section off one part of your bedroom with a room divider, consider a minimum room size of 15’2” x 9” to accommodate a Queen bed and a 4’ wide standard work desk.
The same room size would also be sufficient to build a small 4’x5’ corner home office with an accordion door sufficient to seat one person with a standard-sized desk.
Building this home office within your bedroom can actually be really easy - a well-designed system of modular temporary walls and partitions will take just an hour of hassle-free DIY to set up! Since they’re temporary, you could also dismantle the walls when there’s no more need for the office, and set it up again when the need arises.
Minimum bedroom size for a Queen bed and a crib
It is advised to allow your infant to sleep in a different room once they’re about 6-8 months old. But not everybody has the luxury of that extra room, right? One option is to section off a portion of your room with a room divider to accommodate a crib. For this, consider a minimum bedroom size of 15’4”x9’2” while allowing for appropriate clearances.
Minimum bedroom size for two twin beds (kids’ room)
If your kids are growing up and it’s time they have a room of their own, look for a bedroom of a minimum 9’x9’3” size to incorporate two twin beds and space for a small wardrobe for each child.
Minimum bedroom size for a King bed, a wardrobe, and a sofa
It might be a nice idea to include a small hangout area with a couple of sofas in your bedroom if you have space to spare for a bit of luxury. To include a wardrobe/dresser with a King bed and two sofas, consider a minimum bedroom size of 15’10” x 9’2”.
Need help planning your bedroom remodel?
Planning a bedroom remodel is never an easy task, especially if you have limited space and a lot of requirements to be met. So, if you’re still confused, feel free to reach out to us! Not only will our expert designers help you with a custom plan to remodel your bedroom, but our temporary walls and dividers will present innovative space-optimizing solutions too.