The economy may be slowly improving, but the housing market doesn’t appear to be leading the way. With banks often refusing to make loans, even families with reasonably substantial financial wherewithal are quite often simply unable to move. And so the question for many parents of growing families has become, “just where the heck am I supposed to put all these kids?”
Well, lack of household space is actually a far from new problem, and so we have a solution that’s rather traditional to go with it. Bunk beds are quite an ancient way of making the most efficient use of a room and you’ve probably slept in one at camp or in a college dorm. Once enormously common in an America of larger families, of “Leave it to Beaver” and “The Brady Bunch,” they receded somewhat in the latter portions of the 20th century, only to have made a modest comeback in more recent times.
The good news is that bunk beds are quite often welcomed by kids who enjoy jockeying for position over who gets the top bunk and being able to chatter through the night. (Something you’ll want to watch out for, though eventually the novelty will wear off and your kids will sleep as normal.)
There are, however, a couple of safety issues you’ll want to take note of. In particular, it is not a good idea to allow children under the age of six or so to sleep on the top bunk. Also, you want to be very sure that proper guardrails have been installed to prevent kids from becoming trapped between the wall and the bed. This is more dangerous than it sounds.
That being said, bunk beds and their cousins, loft beds, are the best way we know to really make the most of your children’s rooms. They’re fun and practical. How many other items around the house are both of those things?