Do Apartment Bedrooms Need to Have Windows? (Answered)

Do apartment bedrooms need to have windows and why is this important? This blog post will answer these two questions and some other related ones.

One of the things that could impress us when we visit a new apartment or house is the windows. This is especially true when they are panoramic and reveal a picturesque view.

However, many homes have at least one room that has no windows. A few interesting questions may arise here. Can these rooms be used for a master or a guest bedroom? Is it even legal to call this type of room without windows a bedroom? The answers to these questions and the main one ‘Do apartment bedrooms need to have windows? ‘ you will find in this post.

Do Apartment Bedrooms Need to Have Windows?

Why Apartment Bedrooms Must Have Windows?

The pros of your bedroom having windows outweigh the cons many times over. First and foremost, windows allow daylight to enter the room and make it a lot more lively and cozy. Furthermore, they are the best solution for good ventilation of the living space and by opening them regularly you replace quickly the stale indoor air with a fresh new one from outside. In this way, you prevent the development of harmful bacteria and mold in your bedroom.

Speaking of harmful bacteria, numerous studies have shown that the lack of natural sunlight leads to both physical and mental problems in humans. Therefore, a bedroom without at least one window could negatively impact your health as well. Here is one study that supports these claims.

Moreover, having windows in your bedroom may also potentially save your life. In case of an accident like a big home fire, bedroom windows can be used for egress and also as a means for firefighters to get in and extinguish the fire before it spreads further throughout the building.

Is It Legal to Call a Room Without Windows a Bedroom?

Do Apartment Bedrooms Need to Have Windows

The answer is no. Therefore, you cannot give a windowless room a bedroom status when listing an apartment for sale or rent. Although there is some variation in the law depending on the state you live in, in general, there are some standards that need to be met by all bedrooms in the US.

Most of these standards can be found in the International Residential Code guidelines. There are described requirements for a room to legally be labeled as a bedroom like minimum square footage and ceiling height, a method for heating and cooling, and some others that you can read here.

One more of the requirements in these guidelines is the need for a bedroom to have a window. This was mostly designed from a security point of view. The window should serve as an alternative escape route in the event of an emergency and an inability to evacuate through the main door. Furthermore, it should meet some criteria in terms of its size, so you and your family can escape through it easily.

How Many Windows Should a Bedroom Have?

Do Apartment Bedrooms Need to Have Windows

A room can only be listed as a bedroom if it has at least one window that can be opened from the inside without any special tools or keys. This way, it can be used as an alternative emergency escape. If you don’t have a window in your bedroom, then it is possible to replace it with а second door that leads to the outside or with a skylight.

In my opinion, a bedroom must have more than one window. This will allow more natural light to come in and massively improve the ventilation of the living space. Both of these things are beneficial for your health and more windows can also enhance the design of your bedroom.

Related post: How to Move a Bed Without Taking it Apart?

What is a Room With No Windows Called?

A windowless room can be called a ‘dungeon’. Other names that are used are ‘cold room’ and ‘dark room’. Most probably, these names come from the fact that there is a lack of direct sunlight to illuminate and warm the space.

Different Types of Windows For Bedrooms and Which Are Best?

There are many different types of windows. My favorite is the panoramic windows. They are characterized by taking up the whole wall from ceiling to floor. Panoramic windows are more commonly used on very high floors, homes with nice views, etc. Such windows are not optimal for low-floor apartments.

Double-hung windows are the most commonly used, because they are easy to repair and clean. They can be opened both sideways and upwards. Great for ventilation of the room and energy efficient.

Double-hung windows
Double-hung windows

The next type is the arched window. They have rounded tops that create a Victorian-like effect. Most of them aren’t meant to be opened and are often installed above standard windows that provide ventilation. In other words, they are used in most cases for purely decorative purposes.

arched windows

The classic French windows are rectangular and tall with elegant proportions. They look like a door and you can walk through them, but they are still classified as a window and normally are much narrower than a regular door.

French windows

Skylights are an excellent alternative to double-hung windows for a bedroom. It’s essentially a window set in a roof or ceiling at the same angle. Most of the time, skylights are seen in attics and lofts where there is a sloped roof and a lack of regular windows.

Do Apartment Bedrooms Need to Have Windows

Related post: How I Transformed My Kitchen Into a Bedroom

Is it Against The Law To Not Have a Window in a Bedroom?

No. The truth is that you can’t get in trouble with the law if you decided to have a windowless bedroom. You can’t legally list it as a bedroom when selling or renting out an apartment. However, if you want to use a windowless room as a bedroom, nothing can stop you from doing it.

Should You Choose Cheap or Expensive Bedroom Windows?

In general, it all depends on your budget. When choosing windows for your home, you have to research the prices and the corresponding quality. If you have the opportunity, you can consult a specialist that you trust. Remember that high-quality windows aren’t cheap, but also don’t let them rip you off with mindblowing prices either.

Related post: Why Quality of Windows Matters

Should a Bedroom Have an Egress Window?

For safety reasons, your bedroom should have an egress window. But nobody can legally oblige you and if you want you can sleep in a windowless room as well.

What is the Difference Between an Egress Window and a Regular Window?

Egress windows must meet certain size standards and be able to be easily opened fully for evacuation in case of an emergency. In contrast, regular windows can be of any size. They may also not be opened at all.

The main difference is that egress windows are also used for safety purposes, while regular windows can have a purely decorative function.


To conclude this article, I would advise you to sleep in a room that has at least one large window. Sometimes that window can be the difference between life and death in cases of, for example, an apartment fire. What’s more, thanks to the windows, sunlight will enter your bedroom, which is beneficial for your health and makes the room more cozy, colorful, and beautiful. One more plus is the improved ventilation.

Use windowless rooms for storage. If you are so keen to convert it into a bedroom, then let it be an additional guest-only bedroom.

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