Table of Contents
- What Is the Purpose of a Bunk Bed?
- Bunk Bed Buying Guide
- Review of the 5 Top-Rated Bunk Beds
There’s something nostalgic and comforting about bunk beds – maybe you shared a room with a sibling as a child and have fond memories of fighting over who got the top bunk, or you slept in one while away at summer camp or traveling abroad. Now, bunk beds can serve many purposes – they’re not just for little kids anymore! If you’re looking to conserve space without sacrificing style or function, it’s time to invest in a bunk set.
While the actual origin of the bunk bed is largely unknown, we may be able to attribute its conception to the ancient Egyptians. The Vikings were even known to utilize stacking cupboard-like beds in order to both save room and to also have a portable bed that could be utilized in their Longships! This practical use of bunk beds was eventually introduced into everyday homes, where families needed to maximize the small space they had to accommodate their children.
What Is the Purpose of a Bunk Bed?
The main benefit of using a bunk bed is its versatility. When installing one, you’re essentially getting two beds in the space of one, which allows for more space for other furniture, and, if you have children, they create space for safe playtime.
You may think that bunk beds are meant to be used only by children or siblings sharing a room, but there are a few different purposes for using a bunk bed or set. When you picture a bunk bed, you’re likely imagining a traditional bunk bed made up of two-bed frames stacked on top of one another with some type of ladder or stairs leading up to the top frame. However, there are a few different styles and configurations for modern bunk beds that may suit your needs better than a standard bunk set would.
Bunk Bed Buying Guide
You have the option of selecting from a wide range of bunk beds to match your style. Whether you’re shopping for your young child’s room or looking to upgrade a teen bedroom, bunk beds are an excellent option.
Let’s break down the four most common bunk bed types!
Bunk Bed Types
Standard Bunk Bed
As we described above, the standard bunk bed is made of two same-sized bed frames. Most often, these frames are built for twin-sized mattresses, which saves a great deal of space in even the smallest of rooms, and are ideal for children ages six and up.
The standard bunk bed – also known as the twin over twin bunk bed – is generally made of wood and/or metal. The best thing about this kind of bunk bed? They can usually be separated into two beds, so if you ever decide you no longer want your beds to be bunked, customization is easy.
Twin Over Full Bunk Bed
This is where bunk beds get cool. Say you’ve got two children sharing a room, but one of them is older and needs more space. That’s where the twin over full bunk bed comes in! They’re configured just like a standard bunk bed, except the bottom bunk is made up of a full-sized frame, while the top is a twin-sized frame.
The twin over full bunk bed is not only great for a kid’s room with children of different ages but is a great addition to a guest room, too!
Full Over Full Bunk Bed
The full over full bunk bed is the same as a standard bunk bed, but with double the space! These often come in interesting configurations, with stairs leading up to the top bunk instead of a ladder, or with dressers built directly into the bunks. Like the twin over a full bunk bed, the full over full bunk bed is ideal for guest rooms, but it’s also a fantastic option for a bedroom being shared by two teenagers.
Loft Bunk Bed
Want the height of a bunk bed without the bottom bunk? That’s where loft bunk beds come in! Loft beds turn up the versatility of the standard bunk bed by creating even more space underneath the top bed for other furniture, like desks, dressers, and other storage.
Bunk Bed Features
Aside from the main benefit of getting two beds in the space of one, there are a few additional features of bunk beds that make them appealing to children and adults alike.
- Storage. Many bunk beds come with built-in storage in some capacity, which only maximizes the amount of space saved in your room. For example, some bunk beds have space underneath the bottom bunk for storage drawers. Other models swap out the traditional ladder to the top bunk for stairs with built-in drawers.
- Getting to the Top. A traditional bunk bed usually includes a simple ladder, but many modern bunk beds have introduced more creative ways for people to get up to and down the top bunk. As mentioned above, you can find a bunk bed with stairs instead of a ladder, which may be the best option if you’re worried about the safety of a ladder, especially if the top bunk will be used by a child. If you want to make bedtime even more fun, though, there are bunk bed sets that add a cool new element – a slide!
- Trundle Beds. A trundle bed is a platform on wheels that tucks underneath another bed frame, saving additional space. While bunk beds are usually made up of two beds, some models offer the option of adding a trundle bed underneath the bottom bunk. These beds slide out like a drawer and are great for sleepovers.
How to Find a Bunk Bed Set on Sale
Now that you know what kind of bunk bed sets are available to you, let’s break down the best ways to shop for a set of your own.
The average price of a bunk bed set can range between $300 and $900, depending on the type, style, and build of the set. High-end bunk beds can cost upwards of $1,000, so it’s important to know what your budget is before you start shopping.
With the holiday season coming up, it’s more likely than ever that you’ll be able to find a reasonably priced, high-quality bunk bed set on sale. Furniture sites like Amazon, Wayfair, and Overstock are always having sales on bunk beds – you must know when and where to look! If there is a specific set you have your eye on, make sure you compare the prices between different retailers before you make your purchase, because some sites – like Amazon – often have sales and discounts that others may not.
Other Shopping Tips
When shopping for a new bunk bed, there are a few other things aside from the price to consider before you hit the “Submit Order” button.
- Dimensions. Make sure you measure the length, width, and height of the room you’ll be installing your bunk bed in before you start shopping. The last thing you want is to get your brand-new bunk bed and find that the ceilings are too low for the top bunk!
- Weight Capacity. Did you know that the weight capacity of the top bunk is much lower than that of the bottom bunk? Knowing how much weight both the top and bottom bunks can hold is vital when shopping for a bunk bed. Pro tip: You’ll need to factor in the weight of the mattress as well as the person sleeping on it!
- Assembly. Always check to see if you’ll need to put your new bunk bed together by yourself, or if the manufacturer will assemble it for you.
Bunk Bed Safety
The biggest concern you may have about investing in a new bunk bed is whether they’re safe, especially if you’re purchasing a bunk bed set for your children. Luckily, modern bunk beds are designed with your safety in mind. Here’s what to look out for before and after you purchase a bunk bed.
U.S. Safety Standards
All bunk beds sold in the United States are required to meet the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission safety guidelines for residential and/or commercial use. Make sure you check that all the certifications listed on the bunk bed set you’re interested in are valid before you make your purchase. When you get your bunk bed, make sure labels outlining the CPSC’s safety guidelines are included.
Keeping the Top Bunk Safe
The CPSC’s safety guidelines also require that the top bunk of a bunk bed include a continuous guardrail around all four sides of the bed. The guardrail should also be at least 5 inches higher than the mattress. This ensures the child or adult in the top bunk will not roll off of the bed in their sleep.
You should also always ensure that the ladder to the top bunk is secure and in place before anyone uses it. A bunk bed ladder should be stationary – it should not be easily moved or knocked out of place by the children or adults using it.
General Safety Tips
While bunk beds certainly add an element of fun to any bedroom, it’s important to establish set rules for the people using them, especially if they are children.
- Age restrictions: Children under the age of five should not be using bunk beds. It is recommended that children only be allowed to use a bunk bed if they are six years old or older, and, even then, their safety should always be taken into account before introducing them to the top or bottom bunk.
- Establish rules: While a properly installed bunk bed is safe and secure, you should make sure your children know not to jump or wrestle on either the top or bottom bunks. This could lead to serious injury or accidents.
- Use the ladder: Even if you think you can get down from the top bunk by jumping over the edge, chances are, you’d be putting yourself and others in danger by doing so. When you’re establishing rules for bunk bed use, make sure using the ladder properly is on the list.
Now that we’ve covered all there is to know about bunk beds, let’s go through our top five bunk bed picks!
Review of the 5 Top-Rated Bunk Beds
If you’re looking for a new way to make bedtime fun for your little ones, look no further than this Max & Lily bunk bed! With a low-to-the-floor design and a built-in slide included, this twin over twin bunk bed is sure to be a hit with your children.
At only 50 inches high, this twin bunk set is perfect for both a smaller room and smaller children, leaving plenty of space for playtime. It comes with a ladder and slide leading up to the top bunk, both of which can be placed on either the left or right side of the bed. If you aren’t sure you want your kids using the slide, that’s okay! Both the slide and the ladder can be removed.
This bunk bed is customizable, which is perfect for people who are looking for a certain aesthetic in their bedroom. It is currently available in three colors on Amazon: white, clay, and grey. You also have the option of adding play curtains in blue or pink to your order for an additional $46.99!
With 4.7 out of 5 stars on Amazon, this Max & Lily bunk bed is a hit with customers. Most reviews report that this bunk bed is made of high-quality materials and is a hit with their children. However, some reviews note that the assembly instructions are hard to follow, but most said that the bed was easy enough to assemble. A few reviews reported that the off-gassing period for the materials is longer than stated, leaving a chemical smell in the air.
DHP (also known as Dorel Home Products) claims to be the “small space living experts,” and with this sleek twin over full bunk bed, they’re certainly living up to it!
With a clean and sturdy metal industrial frame, this bunk bed is perfect for rooms shared by kids and guest rooms alike. Unlike other bunk bed models, the Miles Metal Bunk Bed has a ladder fully integrated into the frame, ensuring that it is stable and safe for anyone to use. This bunk set includes a twin-size frame on the top bunk and a full-size frame on the bottom, creating even more space in a compact design. This model also comes in four different colors: silver, black, white, and blue.
This bunk bed boasts 4.5 out of 5 stars on Amazon, with reviewers praising its easy assembly, comfort, value for its cost, and sturdiness. Some reviews have noted that the bottom bunk is not tall enough for an adult to sit up comfortably, so this bunk set may be better suited for children and teenagers.
If you like the idea of a twin over full bunk bed but want something more traditional in appearance, the Dorel Living Brady Twin Over Full Bunk Bed is the one for you.
Constructed out of high-quality wood, this bunk bed puts a unique spin on the classic wooden bunk bed by adding a full-size bottom bunk. Unlike the first two bunk beds on our list, though, this bunk bed can easily be converted into two individual beds – one twin size and one full size! This model is available in five different colors: black, espresso, graphite, grey, and white.
The Brady bunk bed includes a ladder that can be installed in one stationary position and has high guardrails to ensure safe sleeping on the top bunk. This bunk bed is also made with bentwood slats for mattress support, meaning you won’t need to get a box spring for your mattresses. However, you can only use coil-spring mattresses on this model, so keep that in mind.
This bunk bed is rated 4.4 out of 5 stars on Amazon, with many positive reviews from customers. Most reviewers praise this bunk bed for its easy assembly and value for the cost. However, a few customers have reported that the wood cracks after a few months of usage, which may present a safety concern.
The Merax Stairway Bunk Bed may be a standard twin over twin, but it’s anything but standard! With the most features out of any bunk bed on our list, this bunk set is the one for you if you’re looking to maximize storage space while boasting a classic bunk bed aesthetic.
This wooden bunk bed, made up of two twin beds that can be converted into standalone pieces, is ideal for a children’s bedroom. In lieu of a ladder, it features a staircase with four open shelves built into the side. On top of that, there are three spacious drawers underneath the bottom bunk, so you have even more room to store clothes, toys, and more. If you love this model but want something slightly different with storage, there are also other customization options for this model available on its listing on Amazon.
The Merax bunk bed puts safety first, which makes it even better for children who are ready to move out of the nursery and into a bed. The top bunk has a full-length guardrail around all sides of the bed, and the bottom bunk features a headboard and footboard. The staircase is also complete with a handrail, ensuring safe climbing up and down to the top bunk.
This bunk bed has 4.5 out of 5 stars on Amazon. Customers report that while the result is high-quality, the assembly is time-consuming and difficult due to confusing instructions and too many pieces.
The Novogratz Maxwell Bunk Bed brings function and style together with a sleek metal design sure to grab the attention of children and adults alike. This twin over full bed is ideal for saving space while accommodating everyone comfortably.
Like the other twin over full bed on our list, Novogratz’s Maxwell bunk bed really maximizes the amount of space you can have without taking up an entire room. A twin over full bunk bed is not only great for a kid’s room with children of different ages, but would look fantastic in a guest room or dorm, too! This bunk bed accommodates both a twin and full-size bed in one sleek frame and doesn’t require any additional foundations or box springs for your mattresses. It also comes in three trendy colors: pink, grey, and navy blue.
The Maxwell Bunk Bed is rated 4.4 out of 5 stars on Amazon and is praised for its quality compared to its low cost and easy-to-follow instructions.
No! Bunk beds can be used by adults and children alike. Just make sure you know what the weight capacity is of your bunk bed beforehand.
Bunk beds should be installed next to a solid wall. They should never be placed next to windows or directly underneath any light fixtures or ceiling fans to avoid injury.
It all depends on your personal preference! Metal bunk beds are much lighter than wooden ones, but may squeak and wobble. Wooden bunk beds are sturdier but are more difficult to move once you’ve assembled them.
Yes! Bunk beds are completely safe. If you’ve assembled your new bunk bed according to the instructions and are following the safety guidelines of the manufacturer you can rest assured that your bunk bed is safe.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission recommends that children be six or older before using a bunk bed. This applies to using both the top and bottom bunks.
Possibly. Some bunk beds require the use of a bunkie board in lieu of a box spring. However, some models have this feature built-in, so make sure you read the specifications of the bunk bed you want before you buy anything additional.
It’s recommended that only one person sleeps on the top bunk due to weight limitations. Always check the weight capacity of your bunk bed before purchasing.