Renting a bounce house can provide the main attraction at the next party for your kids and their friends. Selecting the correct bounce house for your needs involves many factors to consider, however.
Do you need one for the children only, or will adults want to hop in for a little fun? How many people do you expect to attend the event? How much do you have to spend when renting your bounce house?
You need to find answers to all of these questions and many more. Don’t worry, though, because this bounce house rental guide details everything you must know when working with a bouncy house rental company.
Let’s get started.
How Many People Will Attend?
It’s impossible to set a budget or know what type of bounce house to rent if you don’t know the number of attendees.
For example, you’ll need multiple or at least one very large bounce house when planning a big event where both parents and kids plan to hop around inside the inflatable.
If you’re having a fairly large birthday party where only the children plan to use the bounce house, then you can probably get away with one large kids-only option. Are you planning a small get-together with only a handful of children? One small bouncy house is all you need in that case.
The last thing you want to see at a party is children becoming frustrated because they have to wait in line to get into the bounce house. Gather the number of people attending the event and let your rental company know the number.
They can talk you through how many people can simultaneously enter each available bounce house based on its size. From there, you’ll have the needed information when deciding if one bounce house meets your needs or how many bounce houses you need when the situation requires multiple models.
Age, Height, and Weight of Attendees
The most important element here is the average height and weight of the kids in attendance. This might become a sensitive topic if you’re planning a rather large event and don’t know the specific height and weight of each child coming to the party. In this case, you can rent a larger bounce house that fits a broader range of height and weight requirements.
While some bounce houses cater to very young kids and even toddlers, most of the available options will work best for older children. You’ll also find plenty of options that handle the height and weight requirements to make it easy for adults to join in on the fun. You may need multiple bounce houses to ensure that everyone at the party can participate.
With all that said, you should know that most manufacturers make inflatables to handle 150 lbs. per person, while others will handle up to 200 lbs. Of course, toddler bounce houses come with much smaller weight limits, and adult options handle heavier people.
Consider the height of attendees as well. Most bounce houses meant for children include height requirements that range from three to five feet. Of course, the larger options meant for older children or adults allow for taller people to use the bounce houses.
You’ll want to consider the age of attendees when planning to rent a bounce house. It’s not as critical of a factor as compared to weight, however. Bounce houses don’t come with suitable age ranges. The industry depends more heavily on height and weight factors.
Think about the average age of attendees to start narrowing choices but know that the rental company won’t worry as much about this metric.
How Much Space is Available in Your Backyard?
You can’t rent a bounce house until you know how much space you have for the set-up process. Think about whether you can set up the number of required bounce houses in your yard while also avoiding dangers such as power lines, low-hanging trees, steep slopes, or other debris that might cause tears or punctures.
Consider the room required to secure the bounce house (tie-downs or sandbags). Do you have enough available electricity to power each bouncy house? If you don’t, then you need to think about leaving extra room for a generator.
You can use small bounce houses inside if you have large rooms or plan to hold the event at a church or a school with a gym. You shouldn’t have any problems with power when using an indoor bounce house. Most of them use the standard power supplied from a normal wall outlet.
Never run a generator inside if you need extra electricity. This poses a health issue with carbon dioxide going into the air.
Think about the noise generated by the blower. You’ll need a room large enough to dispel the noise so it doesn’t become annoying during the event.
Do You Have the Proper Ground Space?
Inspect the area where you’re thinking of placing the bounce house. You need a wide, flat area to safely secure a bouncy house.
The best option is a soft, grassy area without sharp objects such as wood, rocks, or any other debris. A large patio area or your driveway can work. In either case, you want to lay down a protective tarp so that the concrete or any yard debris doesn’t puncture the vinyl bottom.
Check to ensure that you have enough ground space to tie down the bounce house and make it secure. You’ll need room to place sandbags on the edges of the bounce house when putting it on concrete. The rental company will typically drive stakes into the ground when setting up on your grassy areas.
By the way, if you’re renting a slide to go along with the bounce house festivities, it’s probably safer to keep it away from concrete. Place it on any available grassy ground so that kids have a softer landing area.
Check Your Available Clearance Area
We briefly mentioned items such as power lines and trees above. You must take the clearance area seriously, so let’s look at it more in detail.
If you’re using a small bounce house inside, then your room needs high ceilings to provide proper clearance space. Remove any large objects near the bounce house in case a child stumbles getting into or out of it. You don’t need anyone falling into a hard nearby object that causes an injury.
In your yard, look for any awnings, low tree branches, or power lines that might become obstacles that get in the way when setting up a bounce house.
Look for clearance of 15 to 20 feet to avoid any issues when the rental company’s employees come in to set up your bounce house. You might even take a picture of the area and show it to the rental company so they can advise you about whether that area works well.
What About Slides or Other Inflatables?
A bounce house isn’t the only inflatable item that can bring joy to everyone attending your event or party.
Think about adding a water slide into the mix so the kids get to play in some water. Did you know that some bounce houses combine with the slide idea to offer hybrid fun experiences for you and everyone else at the party? Some hybrid bounce houses even come with tunnels and smaller slides.
Inflatable water slides exist that are bigger than the bounce house itself. You can rent slides with single or double lanes to give more room for larger groups of attendees. This type of inflatable needs plenty of clearance room because they might come in at 10-15 feet in height.
Other inflatables include:
- Dunk tanks
- Water battle features
- Horizontal slides
Many adults might not get excited about a bounce house. Add a water slide, water battles, and dunk tanks, and you might discover that everyone experiences a day that you’ll all talk about years from now.
If you’re renting any water-based inflatable, then you need to think about another clearance issue. Do you have a way to drain all the water safely after the event? Be careful here so you don’t cause a problem with flooding and turn the fun party into a soured event.
Accessories and Add-ons
Think about the accessories and add-ons that you may need while holding your kid’s birthday party filled with bounce house or inflatable slide fun.
What will you do when dusk hits and you need to wind the kids down from jumping in the bounce house or sliding down the slide all day?
How about taking in an enjoyable backyard movie? Some inflatable rental companies offer a backyard movie package. These packages typically include:
- A large inflatable movie screen
- Projector table
- HD projector
- Speaker system
You can use that set-up to extend the fun long into the night for both the kids and adults.
Another cool add-on to consider is multiple cotton candy flavors. Others include renting tables and chairs for the event and even an old-style popcorn maker!
Ask your local rental company about their add-ons and/or combo packages. You can sometimes find nice deals that include everything you want, such as the movie theater, popcorn maker, cotton candy, dunk tank, and slides.
Who Handles the Setup and Take Down Duties?
Your rental company typically does all this work for you. Your rental will include a certain number of hours to use the bounce house and any other accessories or add-ons you decided on.
However, most rental companies exclude the set-up and takedown work from the hours purchased. This means they’ll show up early to set everything up and come in after your party to take everything away for you.
Who Provides the Required Electricity?
It’s your responsibility to provide the electricity for your event. Remember that a bounce house must stay plugged in at all times. The blower needs to run continuously to keep the bounce house inflated and working correctly.
You shouldn’t have any issues with electricity when holding your party in your yard. Most homes come with outdoor outlets that provide the correct hookup for the blower.
However, many of these outlets run on the same circuit as other items inside your home. Pay attention to anything else you might need to run during the party that could cause too much energy drain on that particular circuit.
If you think you need an extra power source, then ask your rental company about renting one of their generators. This also comes into play if you’re holding the event in a park, for instance, where you can’t plug into an electricity source.
Price and Budget
Everything we’ve discussed so far must fit into your budget. You can only add as much fun to the party that you and your wallet are comfortable with!
Don’t forget about other expenses that a party entails. Look at your total budget and divide it up between your bounce house and accessories rental cost and the following:
- Food trucks
- Catering company
- Costs associated with water and power usage
- Venue rental (if away from home)
- Musical entertainment
- Other entertainers, such as a clown
- Game prizes
If you plan your budgeting well, you shouldn’t have trouble building out a wonderful party experience for your children.
Phew, that was a lot of information about renting a bounce house. It might seem like there’s a lot to think about. However, it’s like everything in life: planning it step-by-step is the best method for having it all go off without a hitch.
One last tip: use an RSVP system so you know for sure how many children and adults plan on attending your party.
That’s the key piece of information you need. It helps you and your rental company to accurately plan how many bounce houses or slides you need to provide the most enjoyable experience possible.
Now it’s your turn. Get started planning your party and let us know if you have any questions.