Should The Master Bedroom Be Upstairs Or Downstairs?

The master bedroom is a prominent and private space in a home, so its location is influential to property enjoyment and value. It is understandable to question whether a master bedroom should be located upstairs or downstairs. We researched some points to consider to help you decide the best place for a master bedroom. Learn more about the pros and cons of having the grandest bedroom located upstairs or downstairs.

If you want to be closer to high-traffic rooms, a downstairs master bedroom makes sense. However, if you want a better view and desire some distance from the living room and kitchen downstairs, then upstairs is best for a master bedroom. If mobility is not an issue, consider how the bedroom placement will impact energy use, exposure to noise, foot traffic, and personal comfort.

Discover how the master bedroom has changed regarding its value and placement in the home for various lifestyles. Keep reading about the ideal location for your master bedroom.

A beautiful master bedroom with gray furniture, Should The Master Bedroom Be Upstairs Or Downstairs?

Master Bedroom Location

The bedroom with the largest square footage to accommodate a king-size bed, walk-in closet, and accompanying accent furniture has been long referred to as the master bedroom. However, in modern times, this term has undergone some changes to reflect a more inclusive society. Another shift over the years is whether a master bedroom should be placed upstairs or downstairs. 

The composition of homes is changing. As families with children become empty nesters, it makes sense for a master bedroom to be downstairs if there isn't much foot traffic around the house. Also, older adults or persons with mobility challenges may find it easier to avoid ambling up the stairs to reach a bedroom.

Anyone who seeks higher ground to catch a view of mountains, the ocean, or to enjoy a better vantage point would desire a bedroom upstairs. Ultimately, the design of a home and the most desirable position will help direct where a master bedroom should be located.

Homes are moving away from strictly following traditions with consideration to how you will use a home. One's lifestyle influences how you will navigate inside and desirable attributes for the rooms most frequented.

Master bedroom in rustic style with minimalist white double bed and hanging lamp

Upstairs Bedroom

Traditionally, most houses had the master bedroom upstairs. The upstairs is a good location for families with children for safety concerns. Many parents may want their bedroom to be closer to their children's rooms so they can keep an ear out for anyone coming home past curfew to sneak up the stairs.

Also, in the event of flooding or a break-in, being one flight above the ground level helps put some distance between unwanted dangers and your personal space.

The upper level of a home is usually a prime location for the master bedroom because it allows for a better view of the outside of the property. An upper-level master bedroom can be outfitted with a private balcony or deck for recreation and lounging.

Additionally, one should consider heating and cooling in a home and creating a comfortable climate in bedrooms. Heat rises, so during colder months, bedrooms on an upper level should feel cozier rather than chilly.

Choose the upstairs for a master bedroom for the following benefits:

  • You want to keep an eye on everything in the home, especially traffic going up the stairs and past the bedroom.
  • Families with children often appreciate a master bedroom upstairs if young children's rooms are nearby or, in some instances, older children's rooms are downstairs.
  • Upstairs provides more privacy and a better view from the master bedroom of the surrounding property.

There are some drawbacks to having a master bedroom upstairs:

  • Aging adults or persons with mobility challenges may have difficulty navigating stairs to get to the bedroom.
  • The home's design may lead to the bedroom being too hot or cold, straining energy resources.
  • Possible increased carbon footprint if bedrooms could be placed on one floor, with a negation of an upper level.

Downstairs Bedroom

Having a master bedroom upstairs isn't always ideal for every lifestyle. If anyone has mobility challenges, it is best to avoid navigating stairs to get to sleep or visit other areas of the home. Families with young children may desire a master bedroom closer to the kitchen and living room to keep an eye on activities. Plus, it's easier to sneak off to the kitchen for a midnight snack if the bedroom is steps away and the children's rooms are upstairs.

A master bedroom downstairs may lack the bird's eye view of the surrounding property. However, if a downstairs master bedroom opens up to the backyard, a swimming pool, or a deck, it is worth the compromise.

A larger bedroom downstairs may be cooler and still offers a sense of safety near the front or back door to keep an ear out for foot traffic. Provided that a home is not too noisy and there isn't a lot of foot traffic nearby, you can still enjoy some privacy and peace if the bedroom is toward the back of the property.

The benefits of a downstairs bedroom include the following:

  • Good option for persons who are aged or have mobility challenges.
  • Excellent if you want quick access to a nearby kitchen or living room.
  • Option of walking out of the bedroom to a nearby pool, backyard, or private deck at a lower level.

Note there are some drawbacks to a downstairs bedroom:

  • You lack the view of being upstairs.
  • If children's rooms are close, or there is a lot of foot traffic around, it can become noisy and less private.

Is It Weird To Have The Master Bedroom In The Basement?

It certainly is not typical for a master bedroom to be located in the basement of a home, which may provide a unique selling point or a property. However, it is not completely weird or illegal to have a master bedroom in the basement, provided that building codes are followed.

If a home had a basement master bedroom, it would be wise to provide a second, traditional master bedroom on the first or second floor as well.

A bedroom is considered as such if it includes a closet and has a nearby bathroom. A finished basement may prove a worthy location for a master bedroom, guest bedroom, or generously-sized bedroom that you can rent. It is permissible as long as a bedroom in the basement is safe and adheres to any local laws and codes.

Consider the options provided with a basement-level apartment or a separate entry to a property where the master bedroom will sit at the basement level.

What Is Considered A Good Size Master Bedroom?

Dark furniture in spacious master bedroom

The average master bedroom should fit a king-size bed, dresser, and other accent furniture with room to spare. As the largest room in the home, it should have between 200 to 300 square feet of space.

The minimum dimensions for a master bedroom should be 15-feet for every side. The average dimensions for a modern master bedroom range between 14 x 16 feet or 17 x 18 feet.

Does Every House Have A Master Bedroom?

Master bedroom in new luxury home with chandelier and view of bathroom

No matter how large or small, every house has a master bedroom in its layout. The master bedroom is typically where the owner retires for the night, as it has the most desirable views, placement, and highest square footage available.

You can figure out which room is the master bedroom because it is the largest compared to other bedrooms. Master bedrooms are often located in a quieter, more private home location and include an en-suite bathroom.

Whether you have a master bedroom upstairs or downstairs, don't forget to entertain the influence of Feng Shui. It is most auspicious and brings good fortune if your master bedroom is in the southwestern corner of the home.

In Closing

We hope you feel more confident about choosing a master bedroom that is either upstairs or downstairs. Ultimately, this is a matter of personal preference and reflects how one will best utilize and navigate their property. The master bedroom has traditionally been the most luxurious and grand bedroom in a home and is usually somewhere private.

If you live in a property that doesn't have much upstairs traffic and is fairly quiet, downstairs is a good place for a master bedroom. If you love a view from up high and will not deal with nearby bedrooms and foot traffic, upstairs is a good place for the master bedroom. Keep in mind how the master bedroom will best fit your lifestyle needs and home layout to make the best decision.

Before you go, don't skip out on the following helpful articles:

Carpet Vs. Hardwood In Bedroom – What You Need To Know

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