Are Bungalows Safe? (Risks explained)4 min read

Bungalows eliminate the risk of injury on stairs but are susceptible to burglaries given easy access to all rooms. Security and risk should be at the top of any homeowner’s criteria for choosing where to live. 

Let’s find out if the reduced risk of injury outweighs the other risks associated with living in a bungalow.

Are Bungalows Safe?

Bungalows are more appealing to burglars due to being easy to scope out and accessible to gaining entry. This makes some people feel uneasy about sleeping with the bedroom window open at night. However, bungalows also tend to be built in safer areas where many elderly people live thus reducing the risk of break-ins. Bungalows also eliminate the risk of injuries on stairs which makes them far safer to live in for the elderly. Evacuating a bungalow during a fire is far easier. 

What Are The Risks Of Living In A Bungalow?

Families should feel safe and protected in their homes. However, security concerns and other risks should be carefully considered before moving into a new home. 

It may surprise you to hear that a whopping 131,400 preventable injury-related deaths took place inside homes in 2019.

Since these deaths were preventable, we put together some of the potential risks of living in a bungalow. 


3,370 burglaries happen in the US every day. Robberies and home invasions are two of the most critical concerns for homeowners.

Although this statistic could be concerning to any homeowner, people that live in bungalows may be particularly concerned with burglaries. 

In a traditional house typically the ground floor is broken into whereas people sleep upstairs. Whereas in a bungalow, if you get burgled you are also likely to be sleeping on the same floor. Additionally, some people may be concerned about leaving windows open at night. 


Unfortunately, the threat of a fire is present regardless of the type of home you live in. There are many styles of bungalows with most bungalows utilizing a wooden frame. Wood is highly flammable and so people living in bungalows should be aware of increased fire risks. 

Cooking is the leading cause of house firer and the kitchen is usually where housefires start. In a bungalow, bedrooms are likely to be closer to the kitchen compared to a standard two-story house. This poses a significant threat to those that are sleeping when the fire starts as they will have less time to evacuate. 

However, in a bungalow, occupants will not need to escape downstairs and will always be close to evacuation points. 

Wildlife Home Invaders

While our homes are designed to keep us safe from the outside, there is not much we can do when wild creatures decide to step, creep, or crawl inside. 

From bears and rattlesnakes to bats, scorpions, and rats, a few safety adjustments can turn your bungalow into an impenetrable fortress from unwelcome guests of all shapes and sizes.

If your bungalow is invaded by wildlife, you are likely to be closer to the intruder compared to a two-story house. 

Are Bungalows More Likely To Be Broken Into?

Studies suggest that ground-floor flats were twice as likely to be burgled simply because they were a lot easier to scope out. 

Perhaps due to the lack of need for the thief to climb into greater heights to sniff out an opening, semi-detached and detached bungalows are a part of the list of houses with higher than average burglary risks. 

As a bungalow features all of its rooms and valuables on a single floor, it is a more appealing target to bandits. Intruders are easily able to scope out bungalows and see-through windows and decide whether to break in.  

Are Bungalows In A Safer or Riskier Area?

Bungalows are known for being well suited to the elderly due to having fewer trip hazards (i.e. the lack of stairs). Their single-story layout allows mature homeowners to maintain their mobility and independence as it offers all of the essential amenities of a house on one floor. 

Bungalows are therefore often built in residential communities which attract a similar demographic of people. 

Bungalows are often built in safe, low-risk areas as they promote easy, smooth, and unobtrusive way of living. 

Is Living In A Bungalow Safer Than A House Or Apartment?

The most significant risks to homeowners are accidents in the home, fire, and theft. 

Accidents in the home

Roughly 1 million Americans injure themselves on stairs each year. Whilst it’s easy to assume the reduced risk of the lack of stairs is solely appealing for the elderly, people of all ages injure themselves on stairs. 

According to a study by the census bureau, the cost of non-fatal stair injuries totals $92 billion annually.  

This risk is eliminated in a bungalow (assuming there are no stairs up to the front door). 

Fire risks

With apartment living, everyone bears the responsibility of being fire-conscious. Whilst many newer apartment blocks are built with fire retardant materials, there are still many older blocks that are highly flammable. 

Compared with a bungalow, it is solely the occupant’s responsibility to not create a fire. Statistically, this reduces the risk of a fire occurring in a bungalow vs an apartment. 

Bungalows are also far easier to escape from in the event of a fire. Since there are no stairs or lifts, there is always a direct evacuation route regardless of where you are when the fire occurs. 


Whilst bungalows and ground floor flats are at greater risk of being broken into, bungalows tend to be built in safer areas. 

However, it should be noted that apartments have the additional safety of security at the front door, CCTV, and the comfort of many neighbors. 

Other Problems With Bungalows

Regarded as one of the most popular property types across the world, bungalows were first built in the Bengal region of Asia and were designed to house at least a family of three. While it is well-loved by many, some recognized some of the drawbacks of owning this single-story type house:

Costs More But Less Space

Since the asking price of a bungalow often includes the plot of land where the property sits on, it offers a bigger footprint all while offering a smaller living space.

In-House Privacy Issues

Because all the bedrooms and living areas are on the same floor, privacy and solitude problems may consequently arise.

Maintenance Costs

Naturally, houses are susceptible to wear and tear which means that owners are liable for their upkeep. 

While the elderly may not invest as much in the modernization of the property, young owners may have to spend a considerable amount to update their estate.

Why Are Bungalows So Cold?

Generally crafted with an open concept design, bungalows allow additional ventilation and natural light into the home which not only expands its owner’s vision but also helps decrease the temperature of the house. 

While it can get very hot during the warmer periods, the cool winter breeze can leave the rooms comfortably cold. Greatly significant and beneficial, the sunny and airy atmosphere that a bungalow brings makes it one of the most favorable houses to live in.

How To Be Safer In A Bungalow?

Much like in most homes, the family’s security is always of utmost importance. Here are a few simple steps on how bungalow owners can improve their home’s security and safety.

  • Constantly secure doors and windows.
  • Use lights on the house’s perimeter.
  • Set up a simple security system.
  • Value your privacy.
  • Be cautious of strangers.


Whilst there are certain downsides to living in a bungalow such as the increased cost per square foot, there are significant advantages particularly for the elderly. 

Bungalows tend to be built in a safe area and also eliminate the risk of injuries on stairs. For some people such as the elderly, this is hugely important in the ability to live independently without the risk of falling down stairs. 

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Hi, I'm Ed, and I run BuildFanatic! I enjoy providing the best possible information on a range of home improvement topics.

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