Suitable to Sleep in Same Room??

Updated on December 11, 2013
L.M. asks from Lewisburg, OH
26 answers

So when I moved into my apartment it was my fiancé, myself, and my two kids so we got just a 3 bedroom. Since then my younger sister which will be 16 in January has moved in with us. There is a bunch of 4 bedroom apartments open but every time I ask the manager says that she can not allow me to transfer. A couple friends of mine said that she should allow us to move because my soon to be 16 year old sister is staying in a room with my 8 year old daughter. Is that any kind of a problem? What are your thoughts??

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So What Happened?

I would like to say Thank you to the few of you that posted your comments that were nice and explaining your thoughts. I am over this website and will not be getting back on. The past few times I have had questions about things the responses I get from some people on here are very rude and hurtful. The reason I have took on raising my younger sister is because our father became very ill and was unable to. Her mother (we don't have the same mom) hasn't had anything to do with her for 7+ years. Yes when she came to live with us she was put on my lease. I wouldn't ask for a bigger apartment if I couldn't afford it. The rooms are very small so it is very difficult for both girls, especially when having friends over. I really enjoy reading other people post and putting my positive input but some of you on here are very rude and should really reread your answers before posting them.

Featured Answers


answers from Columbia on

Ah, first world problems. Sorry, but sharing a room isn't a problem. In some places in this world, all the kids share a bed too.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

My DH was 8 yrs younger than his brother and shared a room til BIL got fed up with the pesky kid in the room and moved to the basement. I realize it is likely not ideal, but since they are the same gender, it's not as big a deal, IMO. What does the manager say, specifically, about why you can't move? And if a 4th room is very important, why not look for a townhouse or something instead if you are "not allowed" to take a 4br in that complex?

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

Yes, they can share. My younger sister is 6 years younger than I am and we had to share often growing up (military). Once my two sisters shared (8 years between them) and I got my own room.

I don't see why the manager won't let you transfer if you are willing/able to pay the higher rent I would assume and extra room would cost.

1 mom found this helpful

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answers from Boston on

No, it's not a problem. It would be nice if your teenage sister could have her own space, but not a requirement.

12 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

Are you serious. Girls all over the world share rooms.

9 moms found this helpful


answers from Reading on

Maybe you could elaborate what you thought was rude. I'm being sincere, because I've read them and other than the suggestion that you're on public assistance, I don't see what offended you. What specifically did you find rude and hurtful? And may I say that those comments (about public assistance) were based on the explanation about the manager not letting you transfer. Because you included extraneous information (parts of the scenario that really had nothing in the long run to do with your question), readers took that as important, since you included it, and considered it in their responses, thus leading them to jump to conclusions that you now reveal are unfounded. Perhaps if you had written succinctly in the first place (for example, "Because of circumstances, my 16 year old sister will be living with my family and will need to share a room with my 8 year old daughter. Does anyone foresee a problem with that, and if so, what?") you would not have gotten answers you didn't like.

We don't live in a bubble - the way you write invites types of answers. It's a shame you're offended, but people can only respond to what you provide. And really, if you participate in online forums, you're going to get direct responses without a lot of ego stroking. It takes a thicker skin.

ETA: Okay, seriously, 1anddone is calling the posts in response to your post "snarky"? How in the world was I snarky? I don't think that word means what you think it means. I was being sincere - I honestly would like to know what the OP found offensive in these posts. There was no snark at all. It's a shame that everyone's feelings are on a hair trigger here. I don't understand why people even bother asking for free advice on this page if all they're going to do it get mad when they don't hear what they want to hear. Good grief.

7 moms found this helpful


answers from Columbus on

Yes, it's suitable. I don't know if your sister is planning to go to college in a couple years, but if she does, she'll likely have a roommate. Not every kid has her own room. Oh well.

7 moms found this helpful


answers from Richland on

I agree with Veruca, where is the hate?

Why don't the two younger kids share a room if the rooms are small. They are obviously the smaller humans in your house. They are also closer in age. Even if they are different genders by the time that is an issue your sister will be in college and find the sofa an acceptable place to crash.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Amarillo on

It might be a stretch for your sister to be in a room with her niece but she is in the one moving into a safe environment. I commend you for looking out for your sister. As a person growing up, I recall having cousins share a room and a bed in a home.

Your friends who told you your landlord should allow us to move may not know what the requirements are for the number of people per apartment and bedroom.

Please get a clear understanding on the regulations.

Also, I am sorry that you feel like we "attacked" you and did not give you an answer that you thought you should receive. We have had a rash of people complaining that we are not nice and blow sunshine up skirts. Instead we, as a forum, tell it like it is in sweet, flowering, polite, and blunt in your face responses with our big girl panties on.

May your family have a safe, happy and peaceful holiday season.

the other S.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

Why on earth is it wrong for the two girls to share a room? I shared a room with my sister for many years. It has only been the last 20 years that people feel that each child needs its own bedroom. I have a girlfriend who had 8 siblings they had 2 sets of bunk beds in each bedroom. No one was scarred. And they are all a close knit family. Are you afraid to have your sister in the room with your daughter? The only time you need separate rooms for kids is when the gender is different and they are getting older. 2 girls can share a room.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Boston on

Two kids of the same gender in the same room - absolutely. Why wouldn't it be appropriate? I'm sure your teen sister would like her own room, but that doesn't always work out that way in zillions of homes. If the kids or your friends object, have them watch a few episodes of Little House on the Prairie or anything else where everyone was crammed into smaller spaces!

I agree with Veronica who said the 16 year old will be going to college or into a job/apartment soon and will have a roommate. I think it's a good lesson for both girls if they learn to decorate in a way that both will enjoy or that allows each to have her own space. You might consider one of those inexpensive room divider screens to create a little alcove so each girl has a sense of privacy.

I'm not sure what's up with the apartment manager who won't let you transfer - I would think open apartments with higher rent would be a high priority to fill. But taking on extra rent when you already have extra expenses for your sister may be beyond your reach. Teens rack up a lot of costs and if you will also be chipping in for college on top of proms and activities and clothes, you want to really have a solid budget before committing to anything more.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Portland on

I'm confused by your question. I've never heard of a landlord or HUD or any other organization having the authority to consider who can and cannot share a room. However, if a child is a foster child or someway some way supervised by an agency they can require certain sleeping arrangements.

If you are wanting to know if you can force the landlord to give you a larger apartment by saying it's necessary because of your daughter and sister having to share a room you are out of luck. Your landlord is not required to be concerned about such issues. Even if your sister's care is supervised by someone who has the authority to say she can't share a room the landlord is not required to rent you a larger apartment.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Miami on

Sorry, L.. It's not your landlord's problem that you let your sister move in. Your friends are being silly.

This is a problem you're going to have to solve without your landlord's help. Quite frankly, your children should come before your sister.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Chattanooga on

I'm guessing you live in a rent-control or something... If so, the landlord is perfectly right that you can't move because your sister moved in. Legally, she is NOT your dependent and thus does not count as a part of your "household".

If not, then I'm not sure why the landlord would not allow you to move, if you have sufficient credit and are able to pay the higher rent associated with a larger apartment.

Sharing a room for me would depend on why your sister is living with you and the type of person she is. If she is a bit wild or likes trouble, I would have her sleep on the couch. Otherwise, I wouldn't have a problem with her sharing a room so long as she understands that it is your daughter's room FIRST.

As far as the size issue you face, it is entirely possible. We had 6 kids and my parents living in a tiny 3 bedroom trailer... That's 3 kids per room. (Bunk beds with trundles are very handy!) it was cramped, but we worked it out.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

I think it's fine. While it would be nice for a 16 year old girl to have privacy, it isn't necessary.

How old is your other child? Could your daughter share with him (I assume it's a boy) instead? If he is younger than her, I really don't see it as a problem, especially since your sister will probably move out in 2-3 years anyway.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

and your friends are some sort of housing legal authority? why are you taking their word?
i presume you have a lease. your apartment manager is not out of line for requiring you to adhere to its terms. letting your sister move in isn't her problem, and nor is 2 girls sharing a room.
if you want to push it, they could probably evict you for adding someone.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

Totally fine. Or depending on the ages/genders of your two kids THEY could share a room.

It is completely fine for children to share bedrooms in a household. IF you have the space to give each child his/her own room and want to do that, great... but it isn't the property manager's obligation to allow you to break your current lease to make that happen.

My advice on this is to stop pushing... because frankly... your lease is for a 3 bedroom for you, your fiancée and two children... I'm assuming you've already officially added your sister... if you haven't , your property manager COULD actually cause a problem for YOU for having someone live there who isn't on the lease. Get her on the lease now... and move to a 4 bedroom when your lease is up for renewal if you still feel like it's that important at the end of the term.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Dover on

You don't say how old or what gender your other child is. I am assuming that child has a room to him or herself. Would it work better for you if your sister shared with that child or your two children shared? Maybe that's an option for you. If not, there is nothing wrong with your daughter and sister sharing a room unless there is something you haven't told us yet.

What rationale does the manager give as to why he can't allow you to transfer to a larger apartment? Is it because it's too early in your lease? Is it because of state assistance (such as in low income housing?

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Anchorage on

There is no reason the girls can not share a room.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

Yes, they can share. And I also agree with those who say you might be able to set up the room so the 2 girls have a little privacy. My 2 sisters shared a room, and they set up a bookcase across the middle to give each of them some privacy. You could so the same with a screen or, depending how big the room is, maybe the dresser.

Alternatively, your kids are the right age that they would probably love bunkbeds. Since they are boy and girl, they would just need to respect each other's privacy a little bit in terms of getting dressed in the morning. For example, if you put your daughter's clothes in your room, she could get dressed in your room while he gets dressed in the kids' bedroom, or vice versa.

I think there are a lot of creative ways to solve this without moving to a bigger (and probably more expensive) apartment.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

There is no issue with having kids share a room. I am wondering why the younger two can't share? If there is some reason they can't then I don't see a problem with the 16 year old sharing other than that she probably doesn't want to. I suggest a bunk bed! YOu can find them on craigslist for about $50.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

Well, my older daughters are 14, my younger is 5--9 yrs apart. If we had bought a house a few years ago, they would have shared a room. Same age difference. What is the problem? As long as there is no conflict between the two, why worry? The landlord does not HAVE to let you get into a 4 bedroom but have you asked why you can't get the next one?

Also, others posts suggest your kids are 2 yrs apart. At this age, there really is no reason your 2 kids cannot share a room. They just need to understand privacy and personal boundaries. MY 3 oldest shared a room (still kind of do) until they were 12. Now my son sleeps in the living room and my girls sleep in the beds but all their stuff is in the bedroom.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Oklahoma City on

Okay, according to what you said you already had 2 kids so they're sharing the 2nd bedroom?

So you and fiance' have one room and the 2 kiddos have the other room and now there is a 3rd child that needs a room?

The kids should not all be sleeping in the same room. IF IF IF the manager has an apartment available and is refusing to rent it to you he has to have more of a reason than he just doesn't think you need it. If it's open to be rented by anyone then he has to give you just as much option to rent it as anyone else.

Are you in low income housing? Is one of the kids a baby that stays in the room with you?

I think you need to look up the nearest HUD office and call them to ask. I think he can't decide if you deserve a larger apartment or not unless this is low income housing. If it is I do think HUD is your best bet anyway.

HUD is the one that sets the standards most apartments and organizations that house families. We used them when I was president of the Habitat for Humanity board in my community.

My friend had a 4 bedroom apartment with 4 kids. 2 girls and 2 boys. They were boy, girl, twins-one boy one girl. They made the older 2 kids have different bedrooms but had to get special permission for the twins to share a bedroom. HUD finally allowed them to share a room because they were under school age. The older kids were out of elementary school, basically the same difference as your kiddo and sis.

They could not allow the boys to share or the girls to share due to age differences. I think this would apply to you also.

The manager cannot discriminate against you in this matter if you have legal guardianship of your little sister. If she's just staying with you then she could move out at any time and you'd have a larger apartment than you need, if it'snot low income housing and you can afford it I don't see why he won't rent it to you anyway.

If this is low income housing and she moved out you could get evicted and have no where to go. He can't be switching you back and forth at her will.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Boston on

I'm curious what reason the landlord gives you that you can't move, I assume the rent would be higher on a 4 bedroom and you say that they're open. Do you have a lease that she doesn't want to break? Your personal situation is not a concern to the landlord, the fact that two kids are sharing a room shouldn't matter to her or affect her decision. Also I don't really see a problem with two girls those ages sharing a room. My two girls will be 6 years apart and sharing a room. I have a 3 bedroom house and 3 kids. If they all needed their own room I"d have to buy a bigger house, but that's not anyone elses problem.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Cincinnati on

So there are 5 people living in your apartment? Yes you have every right to get a 4 bedroom apartment. And it doesn't matter what your reasoning is behind it, your manager doesn't need to know they whys, only that you need it.

Your 16 year old sister doesn't want to share her room with her 8 year old niece. She wants her own privacy, she's at that age and she should get it.

Have you asked your apartment manager why you can't transfer to a 4 bedroom apartment? When is your lease up? Could you wait until then to transfer?

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Bloomington on

I did read all your responses and you got some good advice. Granted there were some opinions that were a little blunt and some that were pretty snarky (these were in response to your "so what happened" comments. The best way to deal with the snark is to just ignore it, no reason to take anything on here (or any other online forum) personally. Also remember it is pretty much impossible to read tone in written communication so something that comes across as rude when it is read might not have been intended that way and may not have come across that way had it actually been spoken.

In response to your question, personally I don't see a reason that the girls sharing a room should be an issue. I think it is great that you were willing and able to take your sister in. I am sorry to hear that your father is sick.

The requirement used to be (and this may have changed as it has been several years since I worked in the apartment industry) 2 people to room not counting adults - meaning an adult could not share a room with a child. You have 5 people in a 3 bedroom and the adults have their own room so you should be good.

I am curious as to the reason the manager has given you as to why they won't let you transfer to a bigger apartment though.

Good luck!

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