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What is a bedroom? DEFINE

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hal

Sophomore Member
Joined
Apr 4, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Michigan
A ho wants every room in the home to be called a bedroom excluding the kitchen, living, dining and bathroom. What is the definition of a bedroom? Can a bedroom lead to another bedroom? ha ha. Can a bedroom's entry come through a kitchen? ha ha. I have to make sure I have not lost it. The ho has 3 bedrooms and wants another and yet this will not help in terms of value. Just another day in the office.
 

Tim The Enchanter

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Jan 24, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
California
The Yahoo dictionary is not so helpful.
bedroom
SYLLABICATION: bed·room
PRONUNCIATION: AUDIO: bdrm, -rm KEY
NOUN: A room in which to sleep.

It needs a closet, a door, and a window or exterior door for means of emergency escape. Security bars on windows need interior relases on 1 window per bedroom, unless there's an exterior door. It needs to be above grade. It can't be TOO small, but I'm not sure where that line is drawn. I see no reason it's can't be off the kitchen. If one bedroom is access through another, you have a functional obsolesence called a tandem bedroom. Perhaps the one you have to go through would be better described as a den or sitting room, depending on the setup.

Just cuz they put a bed in there doesn't make it a bedroom. I would call it as I see it, rather than what the homeowner thinks. My $2. 8)
 

Dee Dee

Elite Member
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Jan 16, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Colorado
My $2. 8)

Well...hoity toity!
I'm gonna start raising my rates too! :wink: :D
 

Judy Whitehead (Florida)

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Joined
Jan 20, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Florida
I require clothes storage in what "I" call bedrooms...... :lol:

Or I charge functional to frame in a closet if the room is big enough. The floor plan should function where everyone has relatively easy access to the bathroom. I hate tripping over foot stools and tables in the middle of the night!

Perhaps once your ho realizes that the difference between 3 or 4 bedrooms has no impact on marketability, perhaps he will settle down.
 

KD247

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
California
The problem isn't the question -- it's the debate. When a homeowner provides information, I always say "Good, thank you" and decide whether the information belongs in my notes or not. If a homeowner was blatant enough to ask me if I agreed with their opinion on something, I'd say "Sorry, I know it sounds silly but although I'd like to hear any information you can provide, appraisal regulations prevent me from discussing the appraisal with you."

Market responses to the term "Bedroom" vary from area to area. If the effect on value is accurately incorporated into the report, and as long as the report isn't misleading, the exact definition of the word shouldn't make a big difference. However, if the market shows a significant response to the number of bedrooms, than the bedroom count becomes fairly important. But, the definition of bedroom must be the one that the market recognizes, not a dictionary or appraisal textbook definition.
 

Dan Leggett

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Mississippi
I've had several similar requests, usually a 2BR structure with bed(s) in a Living Room. In one case the UNDERWRITER pushed as to why I was reporting 2BRs and homeowner was screaming 3BRs. To make a long story short I finished my letter of explanation with "A homeowner may choose to eat all his meals in the bathroom but that particular homeowner's use does not make it the Dining Room."

Never heard back on that one. I wonder why.
 

Mountain Man

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Georgia
:lol: Dan, that's a good way to put it.
Atleast they weren't using the bedroom as a bathroom. Seen that too, in a way. Toilet out in the open next to the bed. :? No, it was not for handicap purposes... it was an upstairs bedroom loft. The "bathroom" with a tub and sink didn't have a door. :?
How 'bout some privacy down there, y'all look the other way. :lol:
 

Terrel L. Shields

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
May 2, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Arkansas
require clothes storage in what "I" call bedrooms

So in the 2 room house I was born in there were no bedrooms? No bath either.

We have a development where many houses are called 1 bedroom, but have many rooms with closets. Seems the lots are too small for a septic system, and since lateral lines in Ark. are sized by # of bedrooms, the plans call them 1 bedroom (but have a sitting room, library, study, sewing room, rec room, etc. all with closets.) 3,000 SF home and 4 baths, "1 bedroom"....more than one realtor who sold them as 3-4 bedroom homes got to buy them back or build a new septic system when the sewage backed up in the home and the owners when to the Architectural Committee and found out they lived in a 1 bedroom home.
 

Mike Garrett RAA

Elite Member
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Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Colorado
Who says a bedroom can't be in the basement?

Who are you doing the appraisal for?

HUD and VA have different guidelines than Fannie Mae.

At one time there was a minimum square footage requirement but that has gone by the wayside.

Does it really need a closet to call it a bedroom? How big does the closet have to be? If it is not a bedroom, what should you call it? A den?

Can you go from one bedroom into another? Of course you can ..... BUT then you better address the functional problem.

For the answer to these and other questions...stay tuned to Appraiser's Forum!
 

Judy Whitehead (Florida)

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 20, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Florida
I guess this is an area where many people are going to have different ideas! I was only half joking, of course.

In this market, I think that the typical buyer would expect to see a closet in a bedroom. The cost to cure is usually not very high.

We also have septic permits per number of bedrooms, as well. The health department in the past has taken the word of the homeowner or the mobile home dealer, or whoever, as to whether or not something is a bedroom or den.

As far as what to call a bedroom....would you rather charge functional to cure an atypical floor plan, or would you rather call it a den, office, family room, etc. In this market we make square foot adjustments, but not number of bedroom adjustments. We have a larger retirement population and I don't think I could prove that a 3 bedroom is worth more than a 2 bedroom home. With the advent of home computers, we are seeing more partitioned rooms, with either an extra den or bedroom, but still impossible to prove in this market.
 
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