More common area space or more bedroom space? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 23 Old 01-31-2009, 06:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Which would you look for if you were looking to rent or buy a house? Assuming two houses were the same price, the same square footage, the same number of bedrooms, same location, same kitchen,same everything - would you choose a place that had bigger bedrooms or one that had a bigger living room/family room type space?


I live in a three bedroom apartment that has very generously sized bedrooms as apartments go - but I'd give up their size for more livingroom space! My kids won't play in their room, and so much master bedroom space is completely unused. I'd live with shoebox bedrooms if I could have a nice big living room, or an additional family room!
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#2 of 23 Old 01-31-2009, 07:05 PM
 
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I think smaller bedrooms -- they're really just for sleeping/storing clothes/private time -- none of which need alot of space
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#3 of 23 Old 01-31-2009, 07:22 PM
 
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Originally Posted by eclipse View Post
Which would you look for if you were looking to rent or buy a house? Assuming two houses were the same price, the same square footage, the same number of bedrooms, same location, same kitchen,same everything - would you choose a place that had bigger bedrooms or one that had a bigger living room/family room type space?


I live in a three bedroom apartment that has very generously sized bedrooms as apartments go - but I'd give up their size for more livingroom space! My kids won't play in their room, and so much master bedroom space is completely unused. I'd live with shoebox bedrooms if I could have a nice big living room, or an additional family room!
You answered your own question! You want larger living space, smaller bedrooms.

Same as other poster, bedrooms are just for sleeping in and storing clothing. My girls share a bedroom with my husband and I, so their toys aren't even in there. I keep their toys in the living room. I would prefer a MUCH larger living area. As is it, it's 338 sq feet for my kitchen/dining/living combined and we could definitely use more space!

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#4 of 23 Old 01-31-2009, 07:38 PM
 
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I think smaller bedrooms -- they're really just for sleeping/storing clothes/private time -- none of which need alot of space

Definitely. My kids are hardly ever in their bedroooms; even at night they prefer to either sleep w/each other, in our room, or in the family room. SO, I'd say a bigger living area over bedrooms, for sure!

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#5 of 23 Old 01-31-2009, 07:40 PM
 
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Larger living space, fer sure! It's nice to have somewhere to escape to, but the majority of our time, at least, is spent in common areas.
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#6 of 23 Old 01-31-2009, 07:47 PM
 
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Smaller bedrooms for sure as long as they're not too small. The main issue we had when house hunting was that they were all on one end of the spectrum or vice versa. Teeny tiny bedrooms and ginormous living/family rooms or giant master suites with no where to congregate in a main area. The bedrooms don't have to be huge for me, but they DO need to be big enough so that a full size bed doesn't take up the entire floor space and I now have nowhere to store a dresser.
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#7 of 23 Old 01-31-2009, 08:05 PM
 
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Our house is not big, but there is more common space than bedroom space.

I actually don't mind having smaller bedrooms.
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#8 of 23 Old 01-31-2009, 08:12 PM
 
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I'd choose larger living space over bedroom space. We just use our bedrooms for sleeping and storing clothes anyway.
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#9 of 23 Old 01-31-2009, 11:01 PM
 
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I'll be different and say I would want larger bedrooms. We spend more of our time in our bedrooms these days than we do in our living room.
We rarely have visitors.

When dd was younger I probably would have answered differently.

Kim ~mom to one awesome dd (12)

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#10 of 23 Old 01-31-2009, 11:57 PM
 
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I vote for bigger common area space. We have a room in our house we call the "football field room" because it is so big. Its great for the kids though. They can ride their bikes and toys around inside during the winter when it is cold and set up tents and teepees. I love it.
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#11 of 23 Old 02-02-2009, 12:18 PM
 
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we learned our lesson by buying a house with large bedrooms and smaller living spaces. we have since sold that house and moved onto one with large living spaces and smaller bedrooms. we loved that first house to pieces but couldn't have parties or more than a couple ppl over at a time, had no dining room, and nowhere for all the kid stuff. this house needs a lot of work but has lots of space for the kids and all their stuff (buggies, toys, etc.)

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#12 of 23 Old 02-02-2009, 12:42 PM
 
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I like places that maximize public space and minimize private space. Why do I need a huge bathroom or bedroom? I don't need enough space for 3 beds in a bathroom, and I don't need the space to run track in my bedroom.

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#13 of 23 Old 02-02-2009, 01:51 PM
 
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Living space.
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#14 of 23 Old 02-02-2009, 02:30 PM
 
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I would say living space as long as the bedrooms were big enough to hold the beds and furniture.

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#15 of 23 Old 02-02-2009, 02:36 PM
 
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Another vote for more living space.

Right now we have a fairly large bedroom which is home to a drum set and desk. I hate having extra stuff in the bedroom. I would prefer to just to have the bed and dressers. But the other option would be to have the drums and desk in the living room and accessible to our 2 year old. We did have the desk behind the couch before but it felt too cramped.

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#16 of 23 Old 02-02-2009, 04:23 PM
 
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I would say more common space but with a couple buts... but enough room in the bedrooms for beds and dressers/shelves. and my 2nd but... I would look at the wall space in the big rooms, it would be nice to have a wide open space but if there isn't enough wall space (maybe taken up with windows, doorways and doors) then it's less usable IMO, I know you can divide up areas with couches and desks but bookcases just don't seem safe out in the open unless you really anchor them down.
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#17 of 23 Old 02-03-2009, 01:58 PM
 
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I agree with the crowd here, as a general rule, more living space over bedroom space. That said, it's not without caveats.

When my cousin lived in Chicago, I lived in Ann Arbor and would pretty frequently take the train out to see her. She lived with two roommates in what was a pretty fatty-boom-batty apartment (actually the upstairs of a duplex).
It had a nice big balcony and it was in a very cool neighborhood- Pilsen, maybe? It was 10 years ago and I can't remember for sure.
Anyway, the apartment was big- probably about 1800 sq ft. The kitchen was roomy- big enough for a dining table, and the living room was enormous. It was boxcar shaped and seemed to go on forever. Plus, the whole place had high ceilings, so that added to the sense of spaciousness. It was three bedrooms and one bath.

The thing is, though, the bedrooms were CLOSETS. My cousin could not fit a twin bed in hers and also be able to shut the door, so she had a curtain where the door had been. The closets themselves (in the bedrooms) weren't even standard depth (2ft), so it was nigh on impossible to put anything on hangers, and with rooms that tiny, all three people had dressers in the living area, which was plenty big enough for them, but it made it really difficult to arrange furniture and decorate.

And the one roomate's tiny closet of a bedroom was off the kitchen (instead of being off the huge living room like the other two bedrooms and the bathroom), so people were constantly stumbling in there and saying some variant of, "Why is there a mattress in the pantry?".

So yeah, while I am generally in favor of living space over bedroom space, I can see how it can really be taken too far.

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#18 of 23 Old 02-03-2009, 03:30 PM
 
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Living space. We knocked out a wall to double the size of the living room when we bought this house, bc we wanted the space to go twd living space rather than bedroom space. That left us with 2.5 bedrooms (the .5 is a very, very small one, though it's perfect sized for a very small person who has elsewhere to store his toys! LOL) for 4 people, and no regrets about it! (the downstairs bedroom is currently pulling double duty as a guestroom and playroom because the kids are kind of young to sleep downstairs alone yet).
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#19 of 23 Old 02-04-2009, 10:46 AM
 
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We just turned the one bedroom in our downstairs into 'living' space by adding a french door between it and the living room. I think smaller bedrooms encourages family to be together in the bigger spaces instead of hiding out in different rooms. We actually try to keep most of the daily activity items outside of the bedrooms. It's also nice because you can close the bedroom doors during the day and save on HEAT a little!
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#20 of 23 Old 02-04-2009, 02:44 PM
 
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more bedroom space. I can understand wanting the large living area when the kiddos are young, but by the time that I was 10, I spent way more time in my room.

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#21 of 23 Old 02-04-2009, 03:47 PM
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More family-social space. A large basement can always get subdivided to areas. But if things are already broken up, the architect did the subdividing already.

Small bathrooms too. I'm always amazed at how big people make bathrooms. The one exception to this for me would be that I would love to have a separate shower from my bathtub. But other than the shower, tub, toilet and small-reasonable size sink, that is it.
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#22 of 23 Old 02-04-2009, 03:53 PM
 
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For me, it's all about common space. We rarely spend time in our bedrooms. That's why I looked for a house with an open plan and lots of living space on the first floor.
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#23 of 23 Old 02-04-2009, 03:59 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leta View Post
And the one roomate's tiny closet of a bedroom was off the kitchen (instead of being off the huge living room like the other two bedrooms and the bathroom), so people were constantly stumbling in there and saying some variant of, "Why is there a mattress in the pantry?".
My sister had an apartment just like this in Chitown. Her's was in the Bridgeport area. She had to put her bed on a loft just to be able to have a desk in her room too...It was essential for her to have a little refuge of her own because she lived to two guys. The bedrooms were seriously 6 by 8 feet! They also had one bedroom off the kitchen. But the common space was truly amazing in that apartment!

So, yeah, I agree it can be taken too far. I vote for lots of living space, but also bedrooms large enough to have a bed and a dresser in of course.
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