Tips for Buying a new Mattress

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Tips for Buying a new Mattress

Buying a mattress is one of the most major purchases you can make for your home. You will likely spend more time on your mattress than any other piece of furniture that you own. For this reason, take a few steps to make sure that you buy the best mattress for your lifestyle.

A. Researching Before Purchasing

1. Visit mattress websites to see what’s offered.

If you haven’t purchased a mattress in a while, it’s good to see what options are available before going to a store.

  • Check prices online to see what you feel is reasonable based on what is being offered.
  • Mattress brands are often coming out with new styles of mattresses including ones that offer adjustable firmness levels and temperatures. Decide how high-tech you want your mattress to be, as some of these may only be available at specialty stores or online.
  • Look up what special features may be offered by each mattress brand including a trial period or money-back guarantee. If desired, you can print this information to bring to the store with you.

2. Decide on a level of firmness.

Although this is difficult to determine without first testing mattresses, a few physical factors can help direct your decision.

  • If you have back problems, consider a medium-firm to firm mattress choice. These are best for supporting your lower back and reducing back pain.
  • Pillow-top mattresses are best for people who aren’t too light, as they won’t have enough weight to suppress the top and the springs to a point that it makes a difference in comfort. Larger people typically find pillow-top mattresses more comfortable for this reason.
  • Ignore the spring count that is given as proof for a mattress’ supposed quality and firmness or softness. Studies have shown that the number of springs doesn’t actually affect how comfortable the mattress is.


3. Measure the space you plan to put the bed.

Nothing is worse than finding and purchasing your perfect mattress, just to realize you can’t fit it in your house. Check your space availability in your bedroom, and then decide on a size of mattress to fit.

  • Twin mattresses are the smallest size, and measure on average 39”/75”.
  • The next largest size after a twin mattress is a full or double mattress, which measures at 54”/75”.
  • The queen sized mattress is the most commonly purchased by couples for its size and relative price. It measures at 60”/80”.
  • King size bed is the largest standard sized mattress available. It is 76”/80”.
  • Some mattress brands and stores offer an extra large bed called the California king, which measures at 72”/84”.
  • Be sure the mattress size you intend to purchase not only fits inside your bedroom, but also through all doors used to enter the room.

4. Find a store(s) to shop at.

Typically, specialty mattress stores will have more informed salespeople and information on mattresses than a generic furniture store. Be sure that where you choose to buy has a good reputation and helpful employees.

B. Purchasing Your Mattress

1. Test out mattresses.

In order for you to know how well you like a mattress, you must test it out in the store. Search around looking for mattresses that meet your criteria, and then lay on each to see how you like them.

2. Ask about a comfort guarantee.

A comfort guarantee varies between brands, but is a certain period of time after you’ve purchased your mattress in which you can return or exchange it for free.


  • Always do this before you purchase and verify at purchase to make sure you are getting the correct information.
  • Find out how long the comfort guarantee lasts for, as this can be different depending on each brand.
  • Learn if you must pay for shipping to/from your home if the mattress doesn’t work out for you. This way you won’t be surprised by extra costs later.


3. Take it for a trial run.

Many mattress brands and stores allow you to test the mattress in your home for up to thirty days. If you can, take this opportunity to verify that this mattress meets your sleep needs.

4. Check the warranty.

Make sure that the mattress you are purchasing offers a minimum ten year, non-prorated warranty.

5. Purchase the necessary mattress add-ons.

Although buying just a mattress is all that seems necessary, you must also purchase a minimum of a box spring to support it as well.

  • Always buy a new box spring with your new mattress, as old box springs wear out over time and lose the desired support and firmness.
  • Purchase a waterproof mattress protector to cover your new mattress. This not only makes cleanup easier should something spill on it, but will keep the warranty intact. Many warranties void out if the mattress is stained or spilled on.


6. Negotiate the price.

The prices of mattresses can often be lowered with a little bartering done with a sales associate or store manager. Use the numbers you found online earlier to determine if you are getting a good deal.

  • Include the cost of old mattress pick-up and the delivery and setup of the new mattress in the total cost.
  • Ask for freebies; many stores will throw in free services if they are simply asked.