Individuals of all ages choose to invest in a loft bed or bunk bed for their home. This classic childhood sleeper is quickly becoming a fun, inventive way for ‘tweens, teens, college students, and young adult hipsters to maximize their space without having to roll out a sleeping bag every night. When it comes time to shop for furniture, look to stores that specialize in bunk beds or loft beds.
First things first, there is a major difference between bunk beds and loft beds. Bunk beds are the most common form of alternative bedding, with an upper bunk stacked above a lower bunk. Some bunk beds stack two same-sized mattresses horizontally, while others stack a twin bed above a full size bed or even a futon that can serve as a larger sleeping or living area. Finally, other bunk beds create a playhouse type environment, with a top bunk running horizontally overtop of a vertically running bottom bunk. Some of these alternative bunk beds include stair steps and even slides, allowing the beds perfect for younger individuals.
Loft beds feature elevated platforms for sleeping, leaving much needed floor space below to place a desk, couch, or entertainment center to provide extra space for living. Generally associated with cramped dorm rooms, loft beds are becoming increasingly popular with teenagers who feel cramped in smaller rooms and want to expand their livable space. Also, young adults are also elect to choose loft beds in first apartments that may have less than desirable sleeping quarters. Think of loft beds like the new, hipper version of the classic Murphy bed.
When shopping for a bunk bed or loft bed, first consider the person that will be sleeping in the bed. For children, consider safety above all other aspects of the bed. Teenagers or young adults may want to focus on the size or the style of the bed more so than safety worries. When dealing with children, be sure that the child is ready to upgrade to a “grown up” bed before making the move. Children should be at least 35 inches long or two years of age before he or she should be moved to a bunk bed. Also, ground rules should be made regarding the proper conduct involving the bunk bed, since most injuries occur due to roughhousing or horseplay.
Regardless of your age, you should ensure the bunk bed or loft bed you choose has two sets of guardrails and a sturdy ladder that can support your weight. The guard rails are critical, even though your bed may reside next to a wall. More so with children, but occasional with teens or adults, bunk beds or loft beds without a guardrail next to the wall can cause the sleeper to slip between the bed and the wall during their sleep. Also, a guardrail on the other side of the bed is critical, since anyone can fall out of a bed while asleep.
For children, the guard rail should be no more than three and a half inches above the mattress. If the guard rail is too far away from the mattress, the occupant can slip between the mattress and the rail, resulting in a fall. Also, the guard rail should run at least five inches above the mattress to prevent the occupant from rolling over top of the rail.
Keep in mind there are a variety of bunk beds and loft beds on the market. Younger kids may enjoy the activity themed bunk beds, while teens may desire a bed that incorporates a loft instead of a bottom bunk. Also, the size of the room is directly associated with size of the bunk bed or loft bed. Although having a double or queen size bed may be luxurious in comparison to a tiny twin, but carefully think of the available space before choosing.