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The Ideal Location for a Master Bedroom

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Are you buying a house or building a home? If so, you’ll want to carefully think about where to put the master bedroom, the largest room in the house.  Also called the main bedroom or primary bedroom, this is where the parents or head of household live. Consequently, the wrong location will be more harmful than helpful.

The differences between an upstairs master bedroom versus downstairs bedroom are important. Likewise, there are pros and cons of the master bedroom’s position at the front of the house versus near the back. Those two factors determine the ideal location for a master bedroom.

Master Bedroom Upstairs or Downstairs? Front of House vs. Back of House?

Primary bedroom with balcony area


People hang out in the living room and kitchen to play games, browse the internet, watch TV, eat, and chat. If the main bedroom is too close, guests and family will constantly be walking past your room. 

Proximity to Children

Your children’s age and independence guide you to where a main bedroom’s location should be. Tweens and teens prefer separation in bedroom location from their parents. Kids younger than that may need their parents nearby for protection during sleep. 

A third deciding factor is how close parents want to be near their children. Do they want to be near their children when they’re ill or scared of the dark? Do they want to be able to catch older children sneaking out of the house? These questions and more will determine what area is best for the main bedroom.


Senior citizens or an injured person will have different needs for their main bedroom’s location. Climbing the stairs every day will take a toll on your back and knees.

Parents who climb stairs to the bedroom will find it challenging to continue as they age. Also, carrying things from the car to the bedroom should not be a chore.

Pros and Cons of Primary Bedroom in Front vs. Back of House

Primary bedroom/ Master bedroom downstairs

Front of the House Pros

A primary bedroom at the front of the house keeps you in the center of the action. The front location also means the bedroom is near other bedrooms within the same area. This is a great choice if you have to monitor smaller children. 

Front of the House Cons

Being too close to the action has severe drawbacks. Indoor and outdoor sounds like chatter, animals, vehicles, and streetlights disrupt sleep patterns. Additionally, windows must remain closed at all times due to prying eyes from the outside.

Back of the House Pros

A primary bedroom in the back of the house is the quietest location. Indoor and outdoor noises like yelling, walking, or talking sound distant. Also, it’s a great spot for parents who prefer to sleep earlier than their children. 

Back of the House Cons

A primary bedroom in the back of the house disconnects you from the action. You may feel lonely. If children need you because of pain, illness, or fear, the distance between the bedrooms may be too far.

Pros and Cons of Primary Bedroom Upstairs vs. Downstairs

Master bedroom upstairs with a balcony

Pros of Upstairs

Primary bedrooms on the second floor don’t get too much indoor and outdoor noise. And, a beautiful outdoor view is more enjoyable from the second-story. Additionally, you’ll still have access to your children if they need attention.

The view outside isn’t the only thing an upstairs bedroom offers. You will get a bird’s eye view of the happenings downstairs from the upstairs den, loft, or hallway.

Cons of Upstairs

There’s a reason to use the phrase almost noise-free. Upstairs primary bedrooms will deal with noise from surrounding and nearby bedrooms. Since all the rooms are on the same floor, there’s no privacy. 

A second drawback is climbing the stairs to get to the bedroom. This is not good for those with disabilities, wheelchairs, crutches, and body pain. Walking up and down the stairs becomes a painful experience. 

Pros of Downstairs

Direct access to the room is a notable advantage of downstairs primary bedrooms. You avoid having to climb the stairs to reach your room. You have access to check any guests entering and exiting the house.

Master bedroom located downstairs overlooking the grounds and vegetation

And, you also have nearby access to the living room, kitchen, laundry room, and garage. 

It’s easier to live downstairs as an empty nester. It’s also easy to close off the upper floor and not heat or cool the area during winter and summer. In addition, a downstairs master bedroom sells faster than an upstairs master bedroom.

Cons of Downstairs

A turnoff for downstairs primary bedrooms is indoor noise. Examples are animal sounds, crashes, chatter, foot traffic, and knocks on the door.

Home noise also comes from any bedrooms above it. Walking, jumping, loud talking, and loud music from upstairs disrupt sleep patterns.

The bedroom may also get outdoor noise if the house is near a road or neighbors. Examples are vehicles, animal sounds, streetlights, chatter, sirens, and rain.

Where Should a Master or Primary Bedroom Be in a House?

After weighing the pros and cons, it comes down to the following combinations:

  • Downstairs master bedroom near the front of the house
  • Downstairs master bedroom at the back of the house
  • Upstairs master bedroom near the front of the house
  • Upstairs master bedroom near the back of the house

The upstairs location is for younger parents who plan to sell when they are empty nesters. The upstairs master bedroom is not an ideal choice long-term because of the stairs.

Parents who plan on keeping the house after their children leave should pick a home with a downstairs main bedroom. That will save them energy from climbing stairs and risking a fall.

So, which location should you choose? Parents who want to be close to the action should choose a downstairs main bedroom at the front. Parents who value privacy should choose a downstairs main bedroom near the back of the house.


Before you build or buy a house, take a close look at its layout. A new construction’s blueprint will show you the location of the master bedroom in comparison to the other rooms in the house. Real estate listings mention the master bedroom’s whereabouts in the description.

Think about the master bedroom’s purpose. The master bedroom’s location should reflect you and your spouse now and in the future. It should represent whether you value privacy or being close to your children more. Additionally, it should represent the children’s growing dependence or independence from their parents.

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