I had thought that buying bunk beds for kids would be easy. Then I went to my local shop and got totally overwhelmed. I made a couple of big mistakes, which I am hoping to save you from.
Should kids be involved in the decisions?
I think that kids should have a say in how their room looks, I think it helps them to have respect for their room and property and to want to keep it looking nice. However, I do not think that kids should ever bully their parents when it comes to furniture. At the end of the day it is the parents who will have to pay for a new one if the first choice is a disaster.
So how do you best control your kids input?
Firstly you need to decide what sort of bunk bed you actually want to buy. Then you have to draw up a short list. There must be absolutely nothing on this list which you are not prepared to buy! Then you go shopping with your kid and say these are the choices, what do you think? They are bound to have an opinion, and you will need to respect it. If they cannot decide, or they choose different ones then you need to start the negotiation process.
What to do if your kids can’t agree
If one child chooses one bunk bed and the other child another – how do you proceed? This can be quite a stumbling block. Firstly you have to establish why they have made their choices. Then if you cannot compromise you have two options. Either you choose a completely different one which has something for both of them. Or you ask one to compromise and then you give that child the choice of either the bedside table or the bed linen. It is important that no one leaves the shop feeling cheated in any way.
So that’s how you deal with the kids, but how do your draw up the initial shortlist? The key to this is being practical. You need to buy quality if you want it to last. You also need choose something which they will not grow out of or want to change twelve months down the line. Assuming that you are not buying for twins, you will also have to take into account the age differences.
I am a big believer in wood. I think that wood stands the test of time well. There is no denying that bunk beds for kids get quite a hammering, they are climbed on, swung off, and generally rather abused; so quality is key.
Then there is the area of personalising their area. You need to decide before you buy if you are going to allow your kids to ‘personalise’ their space. I can’t see any harm in this. I think that Spiderman or Barbie stickers don’t harm any bed. Also stickers are much better on a painted wooden bed, where they can be removed without causing damage, than stuck on the walls and destroying the wall paper!
So really when it comes to choosing bunk beds for kids it is about making your decision and getting them to agree with it, while also convincing them that they were relevant to the decision making process.