Bedrooms don't need closets (2023)

Everyone knows that you need a closet in a bedroom to call it a bedroom, right? While this is a universally accepted de facto standard, good luck finding any type of authority that will back this up. At least not here in Minnesota. As a home inspector, this isn’t something that concerns me, but I get asked about this frequently. Thankfully, it’s pretty simple: you don’t need a closet.

Minnesota Requirements

There’s nothing in the Minnesota State Building Code that requires a closet. I’m not aware of a single municipality that requires a closet. There’s also nothing in the Minneapolis Housing Maintenance Code that requires a closet. In fact, they go so far as to say this in the Minneapolis Truth-In-Sale of Housing Evaluator Guidelines:

(Video) Do Bedrooms Need Closets? No!

NOTE: Sleeping rooms do not need a closet to be considered a sleeping room, per MHMC, although lenders may require that sleeping rooms have closets.

So where does this so-called ‘requirement’ come from? I don’t know. It had to be a standard somewhere, at some point, or it wouldn’t have so much traction today. But still, that’s a good point that the city of Minneapolis brings up about lenders possibly requiring a closet. I’ve heard that this used to be a requirement for FHA loans. Lenders can ask for whatever they want, and as a home inspector, I don’t attempt to guess at what lenders will want.

I’ve also heard through the grapevine that real estate agents weren’t supposed to list rooms without closets as bedrooms. Apparently, that requirement went away a very long time ago, but people have long memories.

(Video) 20 Storage Ideas for Bedroom Without closets

So what if you’re buying or selling a home and someone gets hung up on the closet thing? How do you get around that? Let’s start by defining what a closet really is.

Closet Definition

The term ‘closet’ is defined by the building code as “A small room or chamber used for storage.” Achamber is “a natural or artificial enclosed space or cavity”. This means a 6″ box with a door that’s installed on the wall could be called a closet. Right?

Ok, maybe that’s silly. How about an armoire or a wardrobe? I’ve seen plenty of houses with only wardrobes in the bedrooms, and nobody had a problem with that. I’d argue that the cabinets, er… chambers shown below could be considered closets.

(Video) 10 Storage Ideas for Bedrooms Without Closet

Bedrooms don't need closets (1) Bedrooms don't need closets (2)

If someone insists that a room needs a closet to be called a bedroom, throw one of these in there. If someone argues that it’s not permanently installed, put a screw through it into the wall. There. Now it’s permanently installed.

Here at Structure Tech, we try to make a big deal about the big stuff and a little deal about the little stuff. This is little stuff.

(Video) 10 Ways to Store Clothes Without a Closet!

The bottom line

Bedrooms do not need closets to be called bedrooms; at least not here in Minnesota. The next time someone tells you a bedroom needs a closet, ask for proof. If you find an authoritative reference that says a bedroom needs a closet anywhere in Minnesota, please share it with me.

Author:Reuben Saltzman,Structure Tech Home Inspections

Bedrooms don't need closets (3)

(Video) How I Decluttered My Room That Has No Closet | Hot Mess | Refinery29


Can a room be considered a bedroom if it doesn't have a closet? ›

Closet Space

Most states actually do not require bedrooms to have built-in closets. Some local markets may not consider a room a bedroom without a closet, however, so it's important to know the local code in your area. Technically by national standards, however, a room does not need a closet to be a bedroom.

What qualifies as a bedroom? ›

For a room to count as a true bedroom, it must have at least 70 square feet of floor space with a minimum of 7 feet in one direction. If a room is intended for multiple occupants, there should be a minimum of 50 square feet per person.

Is a room without a closet a bedroom in Texas? ›

Whether a bedroom must have a closet is not governed by the IRC or Texas Property Code, but local residential codes may require one, along with heat sourcing and other amendments to the IRC.

What is a non conforming bedroom? ›

In summary, non-conforming bedrooms are rooms that unlawfully serve as bedrooms, as the occupant would lack an easy escape in case of emergency.

What are the four things a room must have to be considered as a bedroom and their specifications? ›

As you can see, size, access, light, and ventilation all matter when it comes to defining a bedroom (IRC).

What can you do with an empty bedroom? ›

10 Clever Ways to Use Your Spare Room
  • Guest Bedroom. Perhaps the most obvious thing to do with your spare room is turn it into a beautiful guest bedroom. ...
  • Home Office. ...
  • Dressing Room. ...
  • Reading Room. ...
  • Home Cinema. ...
  • Games Room. ...
  • Playroom. ...
  • Home Studio.
Feb 8, 2021

What do you do when you don't use a closet? ›

8 Unexpected Ways to Repurpose Your Unused Closet Space
  1. Tiny Office. ...
  2. Compact Bar. ...
  3. Vanity Station. ...
  4. Small Nursery. ...
  5. Laundry Room. ...
  6. Reading Nook. ...
  7. Sewing Space Or Mini Craft Room. ...
  8. Entryway Nook.
Jun 1, 2019

What are the three types of bedroom? ›

There are three basic types of bedrooms based on the occupants namely master bedroom, children's bedroom and guest bedroom. The sizes vary according to the arrangement and types of furniture that are placed in the bedrooms.

Can a bedroom have no windows? ›

The International Building Code requires every bedroom contains at least one egress window that is 5.7 square feet, at least 20 inches wide by 24 inches high with an opening no higher than 44 inches from the floor.

Does living room count as bedroom? ›

Any room you can sleep in counts, not just bedrooms. Living room, dining rooms and studies count as rooms you can sleep in, even if you don't actually do so. A couple with a boy and a girl aged under the age of 10 in a one bedroom flat are not overcrowded (because the children are ignored).

What is the legal definition of a bedroom in Texas? ›

(B) A bedroom must provide at least 80 square feet for a single occupancy (one resident) and 60 square feet per resident for multiple occupancy. (Note: room configuration and usability are taken into consideration and there may be instances where the minimum square footage will not be acceptable.)

What is a Texas room? ›

The Texas Room suggests a bedroom decorated in the German immigrant style of a mid-to-late 19th-century bedroom. The inspiration for its decoration came from a bedroom in a mid-19th-century extant house originally located in Alleyton, Texas.

At what age does a child need their own room legally in California? ›

In addition, children of opposite genders may not share a bedroom if they are over the age of five. CPS also requires that children must also have separate bedrooms from adults unless the child is an infant.

What age does a boy have to have his own bedroom? ›

As kids grow up they might want more privacy and need their own space, especially if they're sharing a bedroom with a brother or sister. While it's not illegal for them to share, it's recommended that children over the age of 10 should have their own bedrooms – even if they're siblings or step-siblings.

How big does a bedroom have to be for bedroom tax? ›

One – but only one – of the challenges to the bedroom tax is the minimum size of your smallest bedroom. Many of the smallest rooms in social housing are less than 70 sq/ft and thus a boxroom rather than a bedroom. A single bedroom has to be 70 sq/ft or 6.5 sq/m to be classed as a full (1.0) bedroom.

What is a bedroom in Colorado? ›

For the purposes of permitting an onsite wastewater system (OWS), a bedroom is: a room with a closet, a window and with private access such that access to other rooms does not have to be gained by going through the bedroom.

What are the 6 key elements to designing a bedroom? ›

The 6 Components of a Beautiful Bedroom Design
  • The Right Paint Colors. ...
  • Symmetrical Furniture Placement. ...
  • Beautiful Bedding. ...
  • Great Window Treatments. ...
  • Cozy Place to Sit and Read. ...
  • Spectacular Lighting.

What is the minimum closet size for a bedroom? ›

The standard closet width is around six feet. The minimum width for a closet is three feet. This is very narrow so anything less would be useless for closet space unless it is a linen closet or something similar. Otherwise, anything wider than three feet will be okay in most cases.

How can I make money with an empty bedroom? ›

Ways to Make Money From Your Unused Space
  1. Bring on a Housemate. ...
  2. Rent a Room on Airbnb. ...
  3. Rent Out Your Entire Home While Not Using It. ...
  4. Create an ADU. ...
  5. Rent Out Storage Space. ...
  6. Rent Out a Parking Space. ...
  7. Rent Out Artistic Amenities and Space. ...
  8. Rent Out Your Home as a Film Set.

How can I decorate my bedroom with no money? ›

How to Have a Fantastic Bedroom with Minimal Spending
  1. Pile on Pillows.
  2. Make a Statement with a Gallery Wall.
  3. Go for Proper Lighting.
  4. A Fresh Coat of Paint Looks Cool.
  5. Update the Hardware.
  6. Get Creative with a Console Table.
  7. Add a Bit of Greenery.
  8. Over to You.

How important is closet? ›

A well-organized closet makes it easier to get it together, helps keep your clothes fresh and pressed, brings order to chaos and makes your wardrobe experience a pleasure rather than a stressor, and everyone can do with a little less stress right about now.

What is a minimalist closet? ›

A minimalist wardrobe may contain as few as 5 outfits or over 100, which are rotated and swapped seasonally as a capsule wardrobe. The average number of items in a minimalist wardrobe seems to range from 20 to 50 pieces of clothing, which may or may not include undergarments and accessories.

Are walk-in closets a waste of space? ›

They do not take a lot of space and are overall more efficient. Walk-in closets can feel like a waste of space after a while, especially since their size makes them prone to cluttering and chaos. That's where the ease of maintaining a smaller closet comes out as the winner.

What is the most important room in the house? ›

Kitchens are for living

Not only does it contain everything that is needed to prepare meals, it's also a hub of storage and seating. It's also the centre of communications. The kitchen is the most important room in the home because it gives the household a focus and a direction.

What is the most used room in a house? ›

Kitchens are truly the heart of the home, whether you are a foodie, gourmet cook or just like to hang out with friends and family. They have also become laboratories for modern design, with every sleek solid surface, finish, and modern appliance imaginable.

What is the room called when you first walk into a house? ›

Residences: A foyer is an area at the front of the home, entered after passing through the front door. The foyer connects a home's entrance with the rest of the interior. ... A foyer in a residence is usually a small area behind a front door that separates a home's main rooms from the outside of the house.

Is it unhealthy to live in a room with no windows? ›

The dangers of sleeping in a non-ventilated room include spending the night in poor air quality with excessive carbon dioxide build-up. Poor ventilation can also lead to mold growth and an unsanitary environment that will negatively impact your health.

Is it hard to live in a room with no windows? ›

The windowless living room is a problem for two reasons: First, it gets extremely hot during the summer, and there's no way to get fresh air in the room. Second, and more importantly, it's always dark and dim.

What is a bedroom with no windows called? ›

The answer is: A mushroom.

How many bedrooms should a family of 4 have? ›

A family of four should fit comfortably in a house with three to four bedrooms. Consider an additional room for every one to two children or if you plan on your family growing.

Can a family of 5 live in a 2 bedroom? ›

Of course it's possible. There are families of five crammed into one room in a B&B right now. It's not ideal. Once the third child is older than a baby your landlord probably won't like it.

How many children can share a room? ›

The number of bedrooms allowed for children depends on how old they are and their sex. The bedroom entitlement rules assume that: two children aged 0-9 can share a bedroom whatever their sex. two children aged 0-15 can share a bedroom if they are the same sex.

Can a boy and girl share a room legally in Texas? ›

Section 749.3029 - May children of opposite genders share a bedroom? (a) A child six years old or older must not share a bedroom with a child of the opposite gender, unless: (1) They are siblings; (2) The older child is the younger child's parent; or (3) Both children are non-ambulatory child and receive treatment ...

Can 5 people live in a 2 bedroom in Texas? ›

According to occupancy limits under Texas law, the maximum number of occupants that a landlord can allow to occupy an apartment is three times the number of bedrooms in the unit. For example, if the landlord owns a one-bedroom apartment, up to three adults can live in the unit.

Can a child share a room with parents in Texas? ›

There is no concrete law in the Texas Family Code that specifically prohibits children from sleeping with adults or a requirement for space for a child. However, family court judges will typically take those things into consideration when making a decision on what is in the best interest of the child.

What is a California bedroom? ›

The California room has a ceiling, typically with an attached ceiling fan, and two or more walls connecting it to the rest of the house. It is furnished just like indoor spaces and designed for comfort and relaxation.

What is a Michigan room? ›

A Michigan or Florida room is a room attached to or within a residential building designed to easily allow sunlight and fresh air inside. Often, they're not heated which would categorize them as 3 seasons. Many people use the term Michigan room interchangeably with sunroom.

What is the Florida room? ›

So, What is a Florida Room? In simple terms, the Florida room is a residential amenity living space addition built onto a home's back or side wall with a roof. This addition to the home gets its name from its popularity in Florida.

Can you leave a 7 year old home alone in California? ›

California doesn't have any law that recognizes a particular age when kids can be left home alone, according to Tim Fulenwider, executive director for the office of instructional support services in the Bakersfield City School District.

Can you leave an 8 year old home alone in California? ›

In California, there is no specific law regarding the age a child may be left home alone. Factors should be taken into account, such as the maturity and emotional level of the child, and any medical or psychological issues or disabilities have to be considered.

Should a 7 year old have their own room? ›

The answer is yes, you should! To begin with, a kids bedroom serves as a little world for the children, separate and unique from the rest of the household. It is their space where imagination and magic unfolds.

Can you use any room as a bedroom? ›

The size of the room is irrelevant. A room that would never be thought of as a bedroom or living room in a large country house might well be perfectly acceptable to most people, for those same uses, in an expensive, densely populated city."

Can your living room be your bedroom? ›

The living room space of your apartment can be both a bedroom and living room. It might be possible to create separation using a temporary half wall or room divider. However, the outcome might end up looking a bit cluttered if there isn't some careful planning beforehand.

Does a living room have to have a closet? ›

Depending on the age of your house and the style of its layout, you may or may not have a closet within the living room. If you do find yourself with a closet here, count your lucky stars. More storage space — especially the kind behind closed doors — is always a plus.

Is a closet a habitable room? ›


A space in a building for living, sleeping, eating or cooking. Bathrooms, toilet rooms, closets, halls, storage or utility spaces and similar areas are not considered habitable spaces.

What is the smallest A room can be to be a bedroom? ›

Minimum bedroom sizes for new homes

from the nationally described space standard: a single bedroom to have a floor area of at least 7.5m2 and to be at least 2.15m wide. a double (or twin bedroom) to have a floor area of at least 11.5m2.

What age should you have your own room? ›

While it's not illegal for them to share, it's recommended that children over the age of 10 should have their own bedrooms – even if they're siblings or step-siblings. We know this isn't always possible. If kids are sharing, try to have regular conversations with them about how they're feeling.

What makes a room livable? ›

In order for such a room to be counted in the living area of the home, it must meet the following criteria: The room must be heated and available for year-round use. The room must be finished to the same degree as the rest of the home. The room must be accepted in the market.

Can you have a couch in a bedroom? ›

The bedroom's arrangement can make the room multifunctional and increase your decorating options. In addition to providing seating for a master bedroom or guest bedroom, a couch or sofa bed is a practical element in a bedroom for extended-family living.

What makes a room a bedroom in California? ›

Bedroom: any space in a dwelling unit or accessory structure which is 70 square feet or greater in size and which is located along an exterior wall, but not including the following: hall; bathroom; kitchen; living room (maximum of one per dwelling unit); dining room (in proximity to kitchen, maximum of one per dwelling ...

Can you just have chairs in living room? ›

Living Room Layout Ideas for Chairs

If you don't have space for the usual sofas or love seats, four comfortable chairs can work just as well in a small living room. Try laying an area rug and positioning a chair in each corner. This living room layout creates an orderly look that welcomes conversation.

What is a uninhabitable room? ›

More Definitions of Non-Habitable Room

Non-Habitable Room means a room other than a habitable room in a dwelling or dwelling unit, and includes a bathroom or shower room, toilet room, laundry room, boiler room, furnace room, pantry, closet, storage room, corridor, foyer, stairway, lobby and recreation room.

What is a non-habitable room? ›

a non-habitable room — a height of not less than 2.1 m for at least two-thirds of the floor area of the room or space, and when calculating the floor area of a room or space, any part that has a ceiling height of less than 1.5 m is not included; and. (f)

What two elements must be found in every habitable room? ›

Building systems
  • Every habitable room in a dwelling unit must have ventilation to the outdoors, including at least one window or door that can be opened to the outdoors without tools.
  • Every bathroom must have ventilation to the outdoors.
  • All fuel-burning appliances must be vented to the outside of the building.


1. 12 Best IKEA Wardrobe Ideas For Small Bedrooms
2. 12 Bedroom Organization With No Closet Ideas
(Simple Home Art Decor Ideas)
3. My Fiancé Declutters My Entire Closet + We Redid Our Bedroom!
(Arden Rose)
4. A Storage Solution for Small Homes
(Daniel Titchener)
(Arvin Olano)
6. 10 Ideas How to Turn a Bedroom into a Closet


Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Pres. Carey Rath

Last Updated: 05/11/2023

Views: 5307

Rating: 4 / 5 (41 voted)

Reviews: 88% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Pres. Carey Rath

Birthday: 1997-03-06

Address: 14955 Ledner Trail, East Rodrickfort, NE 85127-8369

Phone: +18682428114917

Job: National Technology Representative

Hobby: Sand art, Drama, Web surfing, Cycling, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, Leather crafting, Creative writing

Introduction: My name is Pres. Carey Rath, I am a faithful, funny, vast, joyous, lively, brave, glamorous person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.