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Thread: Bedroom Egress

  1. #1
    Thomas Thayer's Avatar
    Thomas Thayer Guest

    Default Bedroom Egress

    Greetings - I did a inspection on a 1940's two-story apartment building where each unit had two bedrooms. AND each of the bedrooms shared a bathroom. Both bedrooms had windows to the outside, but only one bedroom had a door leading to the rest of the unit. So, in other words, you walk through the door leading into one bedroom then through the bathroom to the other bedroom, and the second bedroom does not have a door leading to the outside. Follow?

    My question is this: Do both bedrooms need their own door opening to the rest of the unit? Or are the windows sufficient? Keep in mind, this is one the 2nd floor.

    Thanks in advance.

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Bedroom Egress

    I did a inspection on a 1940's two-story apartment building where each unit had two bedrooms. AND each of the bedrooms shared a bathroom. Both bedrooms had windows to the outside, but only one bedroom had a door leading to the rest of the unit. So, in other words, you walk through the door leading into one bedroom then through the bathroom to the other bedroom, and the second bedroom does not have a door leading to the outside. Follow?

    My question is this: Do both bedrooms need their own door opening to the rest of the unit? Or are the windows sufficient?


    Under todays standard each bedroom must have it's own entrance. But since this house was built in the 40's it did not and does not have that same requirment. In the 40's and 50's you were allowed to have the entrance to a bedroom from another bedroom.
    Of course this depends on the building codes in effect in that area for that time.

    ' correct a wise man and you gain a friend... correct a fool and he'll bloody your nose'.

  3. #3
    chris mcintyre's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bedroom Egress

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Cantrell View Post
    In the 40's and 50's you were allowed to have the entrance to a bedroom from another bedroom.

    ....but could you have the entrance from the bathroom to the bedroom.

    I don't know about the code but it's a bad idea, assuming you can lock the bathroom doors from inside the bathroom, this means you would be locked in the bedroom and then hope they remember to unlock your bedroom door before they leave.

    If the bathroom doors do not lock it's still a bad idea for different reasons.


  4. #4
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    Default Re: Bedroom Egress

    Bedroom must have a method for privacy.
    Walking through one to get to another does not afford this privacy.
    The walk through is most likely a den in most listings.


  5. #5
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    Default Re: Bedroom Egress

    This is from the 2006 IPMC notice the exception.

    404.4.2 Access from bedrooms.

    Bedrooms shall not constitute the only means of access to other bedrooms or habitable spaces and shall not serve as the only means of egress from other habitable spaces.

    Exception: Units that contain fewer than two bedrooms.


  6. #6
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    Default Re: Bedroom Egress

    Paul
    That is correct, if this house was built or remodeled under that code.
    But since it was built in the 40's, the 2006 IRC likely does not apply.

    ' correct a wise man and you gain a friend... correct a fool and he'll bloody your nose'.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Bedroom Egress

    Rick,
    That is from the International Property Maintance code that section has remained close to the same since at least 1998 the first printing of the international codes.

    Seeing you are from Columbus this may be were the inspection was and they enforce the IPMC as noted below and the scope of the IPMC covers your building.

    101.2 Scope.

    The provisions of this code shall apply to all existing residential and nonresidential structures and all existing premises and constitute minimum requirements and standards for premises, structures, equipment and facilities for light, ventilation, space, heating, sanitation, protection from the elements, life safety, safety from fire and other hazards, and for safe and sanitary maintenance; the responsibility of owners, operators and occupants; the occupancy of existing structures and premises, and for administration, enforcement and penalties.
    Columbus/Muscogee County

    Columbus/Muscogee Co. Inspections/Code Enf. Div.
    William L. Duck, C.B.O., Chief of Inspections
    420 10th St.
    Columbus, GA 31902-1340
    Tele: 706-653-4126
    Fax: 706-653-4123
    B, M, G, P, E, F, H, S, U



    -CONSTRUCTION CODES ABBREVIATIONS

    H Standard Housing Code

    Last edited by paul hardy; 02-16-2011 at 08:39 AM. Reason: add scope and B.O. info

  8. #8
    Thomas Thayer's Avatar
    Thomas Thayer Guest

    Default Re: Bedroom Egress

    Gentlemen - You have restored some faith in the this forum for me. I posed a serious question and I got reasonable and cerebral responses. Thank you1


  9. #9
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    Default Re: Bedroom Egress

    Paul
    Thanks for the info, however it's not my building.
    OP is from CA.

    There are several hundred houses in Columbus similar to that.
    Shotgun houses or Mill houses.
    First room is livingroom, next room is bedroom, after walking through the bedroom you entry the kitchen, then the 2nd bedroom, and then the bathroom wiich is sometimes on the back porch.

    ' correct a wise man and you gain a friend... correct a fool and he'll bloody your nose'.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Bedroom Egress

    I would hate to be in that bedroom wanting to exit, when my daughter in in the bathroom taking a shower.

    Ken Amelin
    Cape Cod's Best Inspection Services
    www.midcapehomeinspection.com

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Bedroom Egress

    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas Thayer View Post
    Gentlemen - You have restored some faith in the this forum for me. I posed a serious question and I got reasonable and cerebral responses. Thank you1
    Restored? What, did you have a run-in with HG?

    The MAZZA INSPECTION GROUP
    www.mazzainspections.com
    Level III Thermo-picture-taker-er...er

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Bedroom Egress

    What made sense in the 40's could be generalized as not making sense today, regardless of the building code today or lack of one in the 40's.

    Are there potential safety concerns with the access route currently? In my opinion - yes. Should it be pointed out as a safety concern to the client? Yes.

    Communicating that the conflicting characteristics of this arrangement of space can only help any person/client in deciding what is common sense safety to live in to day.

    Cheers, Claude in Canada


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