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How To Transform A Basement Into A Guest Room

Having guests in our house can seem like a lot of people in a small space.  Our house is by no means small, but we only have 3 bedrooms, all of which are being occupied.  So when my parents come to visit, we have to make room for them somewhere in the house.  Well, when…

Having guests in our house can seem like a lot of people in a small space.  Our house is by no means small, but we only have 3 bedrooms, all of which are being occupied.  So when my parents come to visit, we have to make room for them somewhere in the house.  Well, when we found out I was expecting Adleigh, we knew we needed to find space in our house to create another room to use as a guest room when my parents come and visit.

Our basement has lots of open space, so we decided to make a guest room downstairs.  There is also a half-bathroom in the basement that would make it the perfect space for a guest room. Since our basement is one big, open space, we thought we might build an actual room in the basement to create a guest room.  In order to actually call the space a room, there has to be a window.  The only window that would meet the requirements would be the emergency window.  The emergency window is located right by the fire place.  So, the room would have to have a fire place it in for it to be considered an actual room.  I wasn’t super fond of that idea, so we kept thinking of other alternatives to create a space that could be used as a guest room.


Then we thought we might be able to just build a room in the opposite corner of the basement and call it an office, but was big enough for a bed.  Again, I wasn’t too fond of this option as it would cut into our living space in the basement.  It would have made our basement look smaller than it actually is because it would be cut into with a big wall.  As we started to think about what would be the best option for the space, we decided to go with a Murphy bed.

A Murphy bed is a pull-down bed that is hinged on one side to store up against a wall vertically when not in use.  If you are old like me, you’ll remember a Murphy bed from the movie Who Framed Roger Rabbit…The detective had a Murphy bed and Roger hid in it.  No joke, that movie is the reason I know what a Murphy bed is.  (When I was living in the city, I moved into a studio apartment with the option to have a Murphy bed.  I didn’t use the bed as I had my own, but even then, I giggled a little thinking about Roger getting squished in the bed!)


As we started to plan where the Murphy bed would go, we realized that the ceiling is lower than a normal ceiling.  This wouldn’t be a big deal, except that when you have a traditional Murphy bed, the bed folds down so that the wall acts as the headboard of the bed.  Since our ceilings are low, this would not work.  We had to build a way to have the Murphy bed fold down from the side.  So our idea to to install the Murphy bed ourselves went out the window.  We would need someone to actually create and install the bed, since our requirements for the space would have to be custom.

We also wanted to add a “closet” of some sort with room for hanging items and drawers my parents, or any other guests, could use while they stayed with us.  We had a night stand that was in our guest room, which turned into Adleigh’s room, that we could use for that space, so we didn’t need to build one.


After meeting with our closet guy, he created this beautiful rendering of how we could make a functional space using a Murphy bed that folded on the side, along with a small closet with two pull-out drawers under the hanging space.  The only concern was our current mattress.  We have a Sleep Number queen size mattress that I just couldn’t part with.  The Sleep Number mattress is so incredibly comfortable and it lasts forever!  I have had this mattress for ten years and I have only had to replace the remote once because the screen went out, but the company took care of it for me at no cost to me!  The mattress is amazing and the company is so incredibly helpful.  (I am not getting paid or sponsored to say that, I am just a huge fan of the Sleep Number mattresses).


So we had the bed system installed, crossing our fingers that we weren’t going to have to get a new mattress.  When we tested out the bed, everything worked and we did not need to replace the mattress!  Yay!

The weekend Adleigh was born, my parents tested out the space.  They were pleasantly surprised by the bed, hanging space and drawers.  It provided them with lots of space to hold all of their things.  Since the bed system doesn’t go up to the ceiling, there is space on top to store items that my parents might have like their iPads and chargers when we are playing downstairs.


I am a huge fan of the Murphy bed as an additional space for guests.  When the bed is up, it leaving us plenty of room to play in the basement.  The kids have lots of room to run around, play with their toys and drive their Cozy Coop cars.  When the bed is down, we have room to play, but things have to be moved so that there is space for the bed.  Seeing as the bed isn’t down all the time, we are happy that we have a lot of space that can be used often, rather than having had created a room that takes up space and isn’t used as often.


Do you have any experience with Murphy beds?  When we were talking to family and friends, some people knew what we were talking about, while others were kind of confused by the idea.  Once they saw what we were talking about, I know they got it, but it’s not something you see every day anymore!




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