If you’re new to fostering, you may find the rules regarding a spare bedroom a bit confusing. You do not need to own your own home and it’s perfectly okay to rent. However, it is an essential requirement that you have a spare bedroom in your home to foster a child in the UK. A room entirely for the child. 

A bedroom acts as an essential sanctuary for a vulnerable child who may not ever have experienced what it’s like to have a room of their own before. What is important is that you are able to offer a child a caring home and that you can provide a bedroom. A bedroom gives them a safe, quiet, and comforting place for them to call their own. A safe sanctuary for them to collect themselves and adjust. It can be very scary to live with new people for the first time so the room helps to provide privacy and also encourages them to settle into their new home. In some cases, if you are fostering siblings they may be allowed to share a room together. This will depend on the age and gender of the children and will be down to a social worker’s discretion. It’s always best to act under the assumption that every young person will require a room of their own.

Many children will not be used to boundaries, rules and the idea of having their own space. A room of their own helps them to learn what it means to have a routine, consistent bedtimes, and other rules that help them to get an idea of how it works to operate as a family. This also helps to avoid any disruption to birth children or other foster children who are living in the home.