Bedroom has an exterior door, no window for egress

I just had a question come up and have done some research from other posts so sorry if this duplicates.

A realtor said a master bedroom that has a door to the outside but no windows is not a bedroom, though it is listed as one. Thoughts? There is also a door to the rest of the house, and a door to the bathroom that has a window. (And it has a closet.)

According to the IRC as I read it the room needs an exterior door or window, as a means of egress.

So, in my opinion the room is a bedroom, and they ran into a difficult realtor.

TREC license # 23335

To keep it simple.

  1. A bedroom must have Two means of egress.

  2. A bedroom must have at least One window.

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Stay away from habitability discussions in inspections. You don’t need to determine habitability or designate the purpose of a room. If it’s being represented as, used as or configured as a sleeping room, Document the deficiencies that it has as a sleeping room. If someone wants to argue whether it is or is not a bedroom doesn’t matter to you.


Yeah, except I see agents/sellers trying to get away with crap all the time. Sometimes, the home inspector, is the only one that’s truly on the buyer’s side and/or has their best interests in mind. If I feel something is worth mentioning to the client or that may affect them in some way, I’ll definitely tell them. I often won’t document in report (unless something that’s blatently obvious or glaring), but I’ll at least verbally mention for them to inquire further about.

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Kind of off topic, but how do you reply to a particular response? TIA. e.g. my above response was directed for Chuck’s reply, however, I guess I don’t know how to quote it directly?

So a residence can never have only “interior walls” and must always have at least one “exterior wall”?


Highlight the text that you wish to quote. As soon as you take your finger off the mouse button, you will see a “Quote” prompt hover just above the quoted text. Click that prompt and you will see the quoted text inserted into a dialog box at the bottom, all ready for you to add your comments.
Hope that helps.


Kind of off topic, but how do you reply to a particular response? TIA. e.g. my above response was directed for Chuck’s reply, however, I guess I don’t know how to quote it directly?
You can copy n paste

But that doesn’t create a “quote” box, or refer to the person quoted. I noticed the other day the old MB method of [quote] oh fudge! [/quote] doesn’t work here.

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Got it…

Take the time to do the quick training routines from the @discobot and you will get all the ‘new tricks’.

You don’t need to argue with the agent about whether it’s a bedroom or not. If it’s being presented as a bedroom, used as a bedroom or configured as a bedroom, document all the deficiencies that it has as a bedroom (e.g., lack of egress, lack of ventilation lack of lighting (there are alternatives to windows), no interconnected smoke alarm, etc.), but you don’t need to debate classification of habitability.

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Thankfully I’m not really in the middle, a friend asked me. I told them I felt it would be a conflict of interest if I did an inspection for them, but don’t see any harm in helping answer this question.

MPH Real Estate Inspections

(832) 986-9789

Simply put guys, IRC R310.1. ONE operable emergency escape and rescue opening. Read the entire section for all relevant information.


Also, check State and local ordinances for code addendums.


Folks; licensed in three states and each one has different requirements. When in doubt, consult the code requirements for the jurisdiction (many of which are available online now). There are few things more satisfying than sending a hyperlink to the direct scripture and verse as an implied STFU to a know it all realtor. And, it comes with the extra bonus of remaining professional through the fray.

What we see much more often is questionable basement rehabs with dungeon “bedrooms?” that would make Hannibal Leckter proud. Most are inescapable death holes!

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