5 Tips for Finding the Best Bunk Beds for Your Kids
What kid doesn’t love bunk beds? It is almost as much of a rite of passage as graduating from the crib to a big kid bed is. Kids love the excitement of climbing up high to sleep and the ability to share the bunk bed with their brother or sister or with a friend during a sleepover. As a parent though, it is a big decision because besides the comfort a bunk bed offers you are also concerned about the safety of your child. A fall from a bunk bed can cause serious injury so the risk should never be taken lightly.
Before going out shopping for new bunks, make a list of important criteria that the bunk bed has to meet so you know exactly what to look for. Here are 5 tips for finding the best bunk beds for your kids:
Measure the Room First
Bunk beds today come in all shapes, sizes and configurations so you need to figure out what dimensions are going to work best in the space you have. Besides the width and length of the bunk bed, you need to also consider the height too. For safety reasons, you need to make sure there are at least two feet of space between the ceiling and the bunk bed so your child does not bump his or her head when sitting up in bed or climbing down the ladder. Also pay attention to any hanging light fixtures or fans in the room. You will want to make sure that you are not planning on putting the bunk bed in close quarters to any hanging hazard.
If the style of bunk bed you want has an unusual shape or include a trundle bed or pull out drawers, you should factor that into your measurements as well. Twin-sized bunk beds are best when you have a small bedroom.
Figure Out the Ideal Sleeping Situation
When you are looking to buy a bunk bed just so your child has extra room for sleepover guests, you won’t have to worry about tight sleeping arrangements, but if you are hoping that the bunk beds will help you squeeze multiple siblings into one room, then you need to look at the sleeping arrangement more closely.
Ask yourself how many kids need to sleep in the room and in the bunk bed in particular. If you have three boys and you are planning two to sleep in the bunk beds and the third in a separate bed then you need to make sure the bunk bed leaves enough space for another bed as well as chests of drawers for each kid. Another option is to buy queen sized bunk beds so your kids can sleep in a bed together comfortably. Some style bunk beds also sleep three.
If you’re a family that loves to cuddle in bed together a lot or if you always read a book together before bedtime than you might want to go for a larger sized bottom bunk so you can all still get under the covers together.
Make Sure There Are Safety Features
The safety of your children is of upmost importance. For each bunk bed you are interested in, check out the safety features. Make sure there are guardrails as well as head and footboards to make sure your child doesn’t fall out of the bunk and double check that the ladder is sturdy and stable.
See if there is a way to lock or remove the ladder when no one is using the top bunk so that your littlest kids don’t go trying to climb up without parental supervision. Also be careful of the mattress you choose. A thick mattress will take away some of the height of the safety rail making it easier for your child to fall out.
Also consider the ages of your children who will use the bunk bed. Whoever sleeps on the top bunk most be old enough to handle climbing up and down safely and can understand the importance of following safety regulations like not trying to jump from the top bunk. Also you never want to put a child on the top bunk that can easily slip through the railings.
Select a Style You and Your Kids Prefer
As you start to check out different styles of bunk beds, you will begin to get a sense of what you and your kids prefer. Some of it will be based on what you are looking for in a bunk bed. How many does it need to sleep? Do you want a trundle bed or a loft style bunk with a desk underneath? Are you okay with a straight ladder or would you prefer a built in staircase?
If the extra space is more for guests then a twin bunk over a full-sized bed might work best or if your kids are bigger or you want the bed to grow with them, then going for a queen-sized bunk beds would be a good option.
You also want the style of the bunk beds to complement the rest of the furniture in the room so take that into consideration as well. If you already have cherry wood bureaus then a cherry wood bunk bed would complement it the best. If you are redesigning the room from scratch, then just make sure the style of bunk bed works with whatever over aesthetic style you are going for in the room. For example, in a more modern style room, you may want to choose bunk beds with a metal or wrought iron framework instead of wood. And if you are going for a more country look, white washed wood or distressed wood would add to the charm of the room.
Get Recommendations from Family and Friends
It can be difficult to really know if a bunk bed is going to work until it is actually in the room and your children are using it on a daily basis, but short of renting a bunk bed on a trial basis, getting recommendations from family and friends can help. They can let you know what worked best for them and you can actually test out their bunk bed yourself.
No matter what type of bunk bed you ultimately choose, make sure you know what features are most important to you and that you do your homework before buying.