Picking out a setup for your bedroom or your child’s bedroom can be a stressful affair, especially when dealing with limited space. Ensuring the right fit is crucial to creating a relaxing and comfortable setting in any bedroom. If you’re considering a loft or bunk bed, you may be confused about which to get.
When it comes to height, there are no exact or expected differences between loft and bunk beds. Since neither have specific height requirements and both can vary from low to high rises, no type is definitively taller than the other.
Nevertheless, you may still be concerned about how either can affect your bedroom plans and which options are afforded to you. Read on to better understand which to get to better serve your needs and what to expect while browsing products.
What Are Loft and Bunk Beds?
While both the loft and bunk beds involve a mattress being put several feet in the air, they’re constructed in different ways. Although the terms are sometimes used interchangeably and get lumped together, chances are one will be better for your needs.
Defining the Bunk Bed
Bunk beds involve having two beds on top of each other with a varying amount of space between them. This configuration allows for two people to sleep in separate beds while saving on surface area.
The only caveats are ensuring that any walls that are touched should be clear of any shelves or posters and that there is enough ceiling clearance for the person on the top bunk to be able to sit up safely.
Then What’s a Loft Bed?
Loft beds have the upper bed part of bunk beds but do not have the bottom bed. Instead, that space is left open for other purposes, such as a work area.
Again, this saves on surface area and allows you to fit more in your room. Of course, the same concerns of a clear wall and adequate ceiling clearance need to be taken into account (more on this later).
Which Is Better For You?
Both of these beds help you limit any space restrictions, but you may be uncertain which one best suits your needs. Assuming you’re starting a family and plan to have multiple children, then getting a bunk bed will help you fit them in limited space. Having two children share a room is not only a good way for them to form a close relationship, but setting up a bunk bed for them will help with the concise room design.
However, a loft is best if you plan on having a single child or plan on having a room for yourself. Yes, adults that meet the specification parameters can have loft beds, too. They’re great ways for you to get the most out of your room, especially if you work from home or need more leisure space. As long as you give yourself enough clearance, which depends on the height of your room, you can comfortably sleep in a loft.
Comparing A Loft and Bunk Bed
To illustrate the point about differences between a loft and bunk bed, let’s briefly compare one of each together. The two items listed below are made by the same company, separating them only by design based on the type of bed.
Max & Finn Karcey Loft Bed Metal Frame
- Dimensions: 78″L x 56″W x 68″H,
- Material: metal,
- Maximum weight: 200 lbs.
Max & Finn Karcey Twin over Twin Metal Bunk Bed Frame
- Dimensions: 78″L x 55.5″W x 67.5″H,
- Material: metal,
- Top bunk maximum weight: 200 lbs.,
- Bottom bunk maximum weight: 225 lbs.
As you can see from the information above, the difference in height between the two is negligible. In fact, any differences between them in regards to overall size and structure are barely noticeable. The main difference is the weight that comes from the bottom bunk and the space that it would take up on the floor, not allowing for usable space
So, it’s fair to say that choosing between a loft or bunk has little to do with height but more about space and what actual use you would get from each one. Both save space, but you’ll have to decide if you want space for another bed or something else.
However, what will make an impact is knowing the difference between high and low beds.
Considering High and Low Bed Heights
As you close in on buying a loft or bunk bed, you’ll probably notice that there are drastic differences in height. Choosing between a high or low height depends on the limitations of your room and the needs of whoever will be sleeping in them.
Higher loft and bunk beds can get as high as about six feet or, in some cases, even more, meaning that they require a higher ceiling than the standard eight-foot ceiling. However, if you can fit it, the high height can give you more room on both levels. In the case of bunk beds, you can find that taller frames can give you room below the bottom bed, allowing for storage and creating more available space in the room. (Note: higher beds are not recommended for young children due to safety concerns.)
Lower loft and bunk beds usually go no higher than five feet, as they are made more for low ceilings. These frames are usually less expensive and are safer for young children, especially if they need more space on the top bunk. A drawback for this is that it lacks the room under the first bed (for bunks) or the only bed (for lofts), meaning less available space.
As a general rule, high beds are better for teenagers, and low beds are best for younger children. For example, assuming ceiling height is not a problem, then it may be best to get a normal bed to start off with. Then, you could get a higher loft once your child is old enough, and a new child could take the bottom.
How Much Space is Enough?
Knowing about the typical age range for your bed of choice is great but can still leave you unsure of what to get. Before you buy anything, you’ll want to learn how high your ceiling is so that you can make an informed decision.
As for your top mattress, you’ll want about 33-36 inches between it and the ceiling. This measurement mainly applies to children, but an adult’s needs are a little harder to determine. Since adults can range so widely in height, measuring their torso plus 10 or so inches should help you decide what works best for you.
If you’re getting a loft bed and are planning on having a work or leisure area underneath, then your main concern for space is your height. You might want to add a couple of extra inches to your calculation to adjust for comfort and take your height into consideration when deciding on the proper clearance. For a bunk bed, deciding on the bottom bunk height can be done by using the measurements from the top bunk.
These judgments apply to both loft and bunk beds, and they each have different levels to accommodate your needs. When you’re deciding between a loft or bunk bed, choose first based on what your purpose and goals are with it.
When you’re making plans for your room or your child’s room, a loft or bunk bed may be in the realm of possibility. Making such a choice can help you fit everything in, especially if the room is small and you need some extra help. Of course, your ceiling can get in the way if it’s too low.
Thankfully, a low ceiling shouldn’t make you decide between a loft or bunk bed, as they come in different sizes. What you need to make sure of is that you’re picking the right type of bed and that you know what height is required before you make a purchase.