I have a small studio apartment I want to rent in my basement. It has two exit doors, and block glass windows. First entry door is about 6 feet to the foot of the stairs (which leads to the main floor foyer/side door to the outdoors) and a second door straight into the laundry room(laundry room is adjacent to studio area). The studio's two doors that exit out of the studio are different escape routes, one facing north, the other west. The basement also has a family room for use to all units (upper, main, and basement), so I would like to put the egress window into the laundry room, so it can be utilized by the studio or anyone within the family room. Would this pass code to rent the studio, since each door leads to an exit area?

If I do need to put the egress window in the studio area, could it go into the studio bathroom? The bathroom already has a very large block glass window, so it would be more economically feasible than the old small windows in the open area of the studio. I was also told that I might need an egress window for the family room as well ...so again, I thought the laundry room (which has a very large opening from the family room as well) is the best possibility to service both areas. House is in Detroit, Michigan. Thank you!

2 Answers 2


The Code says: 1) “basements and every sleeping room shall have at least one operable emergency escape and rescue opening”, 2) “where basements have more than one sleeping room, an emergency escape opening shall be required in each sleeping room”, 3) emergency escape and rescue openings shall open directly into a public way or into a side yard that opens directly to a public way”. (See ICC R310.1)

Btw, the Code says from the sleeping room, not from an adjoining room like a laundry room, (which can be highly flammable. )

Btw, two exits into two separate exit systems does not qualify, unless one exit is in an approved fire rated exit system that leads directly to a public way.


Ask your local fire or building inspector. Some jurisdictions also require egress from each sleeping area.

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