Can You Put a Sauna in Your Apartment? (Practical Advice & Options)

Home saunas are extremely popular with homeowners as a way to elevate their wellness and enhance their home’s appeal. For people who are living in an apartment or rented condo, a home sauna might seem inaccessible because of the space constraint and any rental agreements. Is it possible to put a sauna in your apartment?

As long as your rental agreement permits it, installing a sauna in your apartment is possible. An infrared sauna will likely cost anywhere from $2,000 for a basic pre-fab unit to $10,000 for a custom sauna. A typical prefabricated infrared sauna is 31.5 in wide by 33 in deep by 41 in tall and can be plugged into a standard electrical outlet.

Keep reading for more information about installing a sauna in an apartment or condo, plus some important considerations before you dive in. 

Can you have a sauna in an apartment?

If you are looking into putting a sauna in your apartment, the number one question is whether or not it’s permitted by your apartment complex. Be sure to check your contract before making a purchase!

The second most important consideration is space. Apartment living means that you will need to go for a smaller sauna that can fit one to two people as opposed to a traditional sauna that can fit multiple people inside.

Having a sauna inside an apartment is doable and practical especially if you like spending time in the sauna. People who have space constraints in their homes typically go for infrared saunas that can fit one or two people. Home saunas have multiple designs and configurations that can fit any space you have available. 

Here are the different advantages of choosing an infrared sauna over traditional saunas for your apartment: 

  • Electrical use – Infrared saunas can be plugged into any electrical outlet. Since infrared home saunas are smaller, more compact, and portable, it is easy to unplug and move them to another area in your apartment. For 1-2 person infrared saunas, the designated wattage is below 1.6 kilowatts which are slightly above the electrical usage of a space heater or a microwave.
  • Pre-heating time – Heating an infrared sauna is quick and easy, most of them can heat up in ten minutes. 
  • Weight – Home saunas that are made for apartments and condos are on the lighter side, and it usually comes up to 220-250 pounds assembled. 

Will a sauna fit inside an apartment?

One of the good things about home saunas is that it comes in different shapes, sizes, and configurations.

If you are entertaining the idea of purchasing a sauna and placing it inside your apartment, you have to think about where you want to put it and make sure that you measure the area to make sure it fits.

Infrared saunas that fit 1-2 people can easily fit inside an apartment. The typical dimension of this type of sauna is 31.5” W x 33” D x 41” H which makes it easy to fit through any size apartment without taking up too much space.

Purchasing a home sauna is like purchasing another home furniture, you have to make sure that you have ample space to fit it in – and a way to get it into your space!

The standard door size is 36″ W x 80″ H, meaning a small pre-fab sauna should fit easily through the door.

Once you know it’s possible to install a sauna in your apartment, you have to ask: can you?

Portable infrared saunas that you can plug into any electrical outlet are allowed in most rentals. If you are looking to install a bigger sauna, you should check with your landlord or property manager.  

Rental rules and regulations vary by state and city and it’s hard to determine if you can install a sauna inside your rental without checking with your property manager or landlord. Checking with your property manager beforehand is ideal because you don’t want to be liable for any damage or anything that happens with the sauna.

Can you put a sauna on an apartment balcony?

You can put a portable infrared sauna on your apartment balcony as long as you have an electrical outlet.

Infrared saunas are preferred for apartments as you don’t have to deal with water, or vents which will sometimes lead to water seeping out of the sauna especially if you live in an upstairs unit.

Placing a portable sauna on your apartment balcony is a great idea because it will lead to less clutter inside your apartment. This move will also lead to you saving space indoors.

The best sauna for apartments

Depending on the amount of research you’ve done recently, you may be surprised to learn how compact and energy-efficient they can be.

An infrared sauna that holds 1-2 people is ideal to place in an apartment or condo. Infrared saunas are the preferred type because it heats up using electricity and infrared panels which leads to lower usage of electricity compared to other types of saunas. 

Keep reading to learn more about the key differences between traditional and infrared sauna installations in your apartment.

Traditional dry sauna or infrared?

Infrared saunas are the preferred type for apartment or condo usage. Infrared saunas can be portable and compact. It can be powered by electricity and can take minimal space especially if you live in a smaller space.

The main difference between a traditional dry sauna and an infrared sauna is the way the heat travels and transfers from the heat source to your body. With traditional dry saunas, the space around you has to be heated first which leads to higher temperatures which also means that more electricity or energy is consumed.

Infrared saunas use infrared heat or lamps which heat your body from the inside. Because of this, the temperature for infrared saunas is lower compared to traditional dry saunas. This leads to lower energy and electricity consumption which makes it ideal to use inside your home.

Pre-fab, sauna kit, or DIY?

Prefabricated saunas have modular home sections that you can easily assemble. Assembly for a portable infrared sauna usually takes up to 30 minutes. One of the main benefits of a prefab sauna is that it can easily be moved and disassembled. A DIY sauna kit is a package containing all the materials that you can use to build a sauna. 

Since apartments have limited space, a prefabricated infrared sauna will work best because you can move it to different areas of your apartment if you need to. 

Prefabricated saunas are designed to minimize the amount of work that you have to do for installation. Deciding which type you want depends on your preferences and lifestyle choices.

Prefabricated infrared saunas for apartments

Your home should be your sanctuary and a stress-free place for relaxation. Putting a prefabricated infrared sauna in your apartment is easy, thanks to the numerous different options that are available in the market. With a plethora of options, you can choose the best one that will fit your space and meet your needs. 

Here are some examples of pre-fabricated infrared saunas that can be installed in a relatively small place, making them ideal for apartments:

  • Maxxus Dynamic Barcelona DYN-6106-01 – This is a relatively small (39″ W x 36″ D x 73″ H), but highly rated sauna box. It can be installed pretty much anywhere, including on carpet, and even boasts a music system with Bluetooth capability.
  • JNH Joyous 2 Person Sauna – This popular two-person sauna is 47.3” W x 39.5” D x 75” H, and offers a wide variety of upgrades including ergonomic seats, a footwarmer, and an ionizer.
  • Heat Wave BSA2406 Deluxe Ceramic Infrared Sauna – This two-person sauna offers a more luxurious design than you find in most prefabricated installations, and includes a color therapy system, and full music system (CD player, radio, and aux input).
  • Serenelife Portable Infrared Sauna – This portable sauna is useful for those who don’t have space to dedicate to a semi-permanent sauna installation.

How to build a sauna in your apartment

If you are planning to install a sauna in your home another option is to build it from scratch.

Doing this will enable you to customize and put your sauna vision into reality. The downside to this option is it will cost much more. If you have the financial means and the time to build your sauna, it will be all worth it in the end.  

The outright cost of building a sauna can be between $3,000 to $10,000. The cost estimate depends on the size and material that you elect to use. A home sauna is a great way to relax and you can do it in the comfort of your own home.

It is best to consult a contractor or an expert if you don’t have experience with building things but here are the basic steps on how you can build a sauna in your apartment:

  • Determine where you want to put it – Choosing the right location is important even before you think about building your sauna because this will determine the measurements of materials that you need to get. The location will also enable you to picture how much space you need. Most apartments can fit 1-2 people saunas and nothing bigger than this.
  • Consider turning a closet or small deck into a sauna – Put this extra space to work for you by installing a sauna. Closets and decks can easily fit at least one person and this will save you space in the long run. 
  • Keep in mind the different elements of a sauna – Different elements comprise a sauna. You have to think about the type of flooring you will use, insulation or wooden panels, and the actual heater. A glass door is ideal for safety reasons.
  • Consult the professionals – You can probably do the work on your own if you are handy but it is smart to consult a building contractor just to make sure your plan will work.

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