A bed is the one piece of furniture on which you can’t afford to cut corners. There’s nothing worse than an uncomfortable bed with loose springs, a lumpy mattress and wobbly legs. You can’t get a decent night’s sleep and if you have to share the bed with a spouse or partner, both of you will end up sleep deprived. So what should you look for when purchasing a new bed?
What’s your budget?
Although lots of people end up with a second-hand bed, in this post we’re talking about new beds. This isn’t to say that there’s anything wrong with a second-hand bed, but if possible, you should try and purchase new because used mattresses will be moulded to their former owner’s shape and size, so if that person was exceptionally large, the mattress won’t be terribly comfortable.
Before you go bed shopping, think about how much you can afford to spend. In general, the bigger your budget, the better the bed. More expensive mattresses and bed frames are constructed with more resilient materials and are unlikely to fall apart if you or your partner is at the heavier end of the weight scale. However, there are plenty of bargains to be had, so don’t assume that the big brand names are the only ones worth looking at. Often a lesser well-known brand can provide a more affordable product and a better service.
What size bed do you need?
Beds come in different sizes: single, double, queen, king and California king being the most common.
- A single bed is appropriate for a child, but an adult will find it a bit on the small side.
- A double is large enough for two adults, but most people prefer a larger bed that affords them extra room to move around. However, a double is useful for the spare bedroom.
- A queen or king-sized bed is ideal for two adults.
- A super-king is a good option for larger and taller adults or if you have a very spacious bedroom.
If you’re taller or heavier than average, make sure you look for a bed that can comfortably accommodate you. Anything less than optimal will be uncomfortable for you and your partner.
Adjustable beds are a personal comfort bed. They are designed to lift up at the head and/or feet end. The bed frame is engineered in such a way that it can be adjusted to suit your needs. So if you have a mobility problem and you can’t get out of bed without assistance, press a button to instruct the bed to lift you upright. Or, if you need to keep your legs raised, elevate the bottom of the bed. This type of bed is suitable for older or disabled people. They can be expensive, but there are cheaper options that are the equivalent of Sleep Number bed bases.
When buying a mattress, go for the most expensive one you can afford. Most mattresses need replacing after ten years because they wear out, but the heavier you are, the faster this process will happen, so if you’re suffering from back ache, or localized twinges, consider replacing the mattress. Pocket-sprung mattresses are very comfortable, but memory foam mattresses can offer an extra level of comfort.
Some people prefer an extra-firm mattress while others like a softer option. It’s really a matter of personal choice, so try a few out in the store and see which one is the most comfortable. Just remember to take your partner with you, as you both need to have a say in the buying process.
Divan beds offer the bonus of under-bed storage. This can be very useful if you need extra drawer space for storing bedding, a spare duvet or a pillow. Alternatively, if you prefer a traditional bed frame style, you’ll still be able to buy nice storage boxes and slide them beneath the bed.
There are hundreds of different styles of bed from which to choose. Wooden framed beds are always popular because they fit well with both modern and traditional décor. Metal framed beds can also be very attractive. Other styles you may wish to consider are sleigh beds, loft beds or even four-poster beds. There’s the option of pull down or sofa beds if you don’t have the room for a full-size bed in a flat our house that’s short on space.
Beds can be bought from a bricks & mortar store or online. Prices will vary between different retail outlets, so make sure you shop around before you commit to buy.