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So, you?re in the market for a new bed and, unlike most people, you?ve decided that it makes sense to put some time and effort into finding the right one. I remember when I first moved into my own place, and the priorities were slightly different. We didn?t have a lot of money to hand, and we didn?t have a whole lot of time, to be honest. We needed a bed, and we needed it to be cheap ? otherwise, we were sleeping on the floor.

If you?re in that kind of situation right now, this feature is not for you. If you don?t currently have a bed and need one as soon as possible, this might not be the best time for research ? go with cheap and cheerful as anything is better than a carpet mattress. However, if you?re in the market for an upgrade, and have the luxury of time, then I would definitely suggest putting in the minutes to find the bed that best suits your needs. With the following tips, you stand every chance of getting it right the first time.

Choose a Bed that Suits the Room

If you?re in the market for a bed but not in a rush, you should make use of the available time to choose a bed that best suits the room. If you?ve gone with a minimalist style, then a luxurious four-poster bed that wouldn?t look out of place in Downton Abbey probably isn?t the right call. Beds are usually the centrepiece of the bedroom, even if only because of their sheer size, so it makes sense to get it right.

While we can?t speak for everyone, some bed retailers have taken the plunge with augmented reality which, as a writer for a part tech blog, part home and garden blog, is right up my street. An actual image of how the bed will look in a room and in different positions to boot can be just what you need to ensure that you make the right decision. Naturally, you don?t want to discount a retailer if they don?t offer these advanced purchasing options, but at the very least, you want to know that your bed of choice fits, and not just in terms of size.

Consider How Much Space You Have

I have to admit, every time I?ve bought a new bed, I?ve gone for a super kingsize. I?m not the smallest person you?ll ever meet, and I like to have space to stretch out. Sometimes, it has been to the detriment of the bedroom and while I?ve had all the space I need to toss and turn, anything else in the bedroom ? even something as simple as getting dressed ? has suffered in the process.

At the very least, you?ll want to leave enough space for your wardrobes and dressing table if you have one, and a good rule of thumb is to be able to walk around each side of the bed comfortably. If you can walk it, you can use it, and while the bed itself is bound to dominate the room, it doesn?t need to make the rest of your space useless.

Think About Getting it Into the Bedroom

In our old house, we had plenty to think about whenever buying a bed. It was an old terraced house with an annoying staircase that turned back on itself over the first three or four steps. With my preference for beds that are as big as possible, standard divans were out of the question ? even when they came in two pieces. You just couldn?t get the angle right to turn back on yourself up the stairs. In the end, our beds came in dozens of pieces and took hours to put together.

Hopefully, you?re not in an identical situation, but it still pays to think about actually getting your bed off the delivery truck and into the bedroom. The bigger it is, the more angles you?ll need to consider so grab a tape measure and ensure you can get your bed of choice up the stairs and into place without damaging anything.

Choose a Mattress at the Same Time

I can?t speak for everyone but, as far as I?m concerned, the mattress is even more important than the base. Go without, and you?re just asking for backache. Choose the wrong one, and you?ll probably end up with the same results.

It isn?t lost on me that there are so many brands out there, seemingly all of a sudden, promising the best in mattress technology. ?Emma? springs to mind for some reason, but you can probably think of several yourself. On the plus side, most of these mattresses come with a guarantee, and often ones that last for months, so you?ll honestly know whether it suits or not by the end.

Also worth considering is that they are rarely cheap and you can get the same kind of thing for less without committing to a brand. Above all, the mattress needs to fit the bed perfectly, for obvious reasons. Also, a good rule of thumb is that the more you pay, the longer the mattress will last, so if you don?t want to replace it next year, it might be worth a few extra coins to get it right the first time.

Try Out Beds and Mattresses in Person

Don?t get me wrong ? I love online shopping, and if I can buy it online, the chances are that I will do. However, this does not extend to beds. I even get my groceries from a website, but when I?m spending hours on end lying on something, I want to know how it feels beforehand.

If you?re a regular visitor to Robode, you?ll know that the team and I are not exactly against the occasional Amazon link, but this feature is simply not the time for that. Unless you?re in a pinch and need a bed today, don?t buy it online. Instead, go into a couple of different bed shops and test them out. The proof is in the pudding, and only when you?re comfortable should you commit to any bed as the chances are you?ll be stuck with it for several years from now.

Bring Whoever You Share the Bed With Along

Comfort is the main criteria for me, but I always have to remember that it isn?t just me that will sleep in whatever bed I choose. There are two main reasons to bring your sleeping partner along, the first of which is to make sure that they like the look, feel and comfort of your chosen bed too.

Secondly, I need to go back to the issue of space. I don?t know about you, but I don?t want to feel like a sardine in a can when I go to bed, and the chances are that your partner doesn?t either. Lie down together and work out how much room you each have in a bed and be honest about whether you can see it working going forward. Nobody benefits when one person just goes along with it and, as a bonus tip, consider if you still have kids that like to sleep in the bed with you ? they?ll need room too.

Ask as Many Questions as You Like

You?re the one that needs to sleep on the bed, so you?re well within your rights to ask anything that comes to mind before you commit. Having never worked in a furniture shop, I?m not entirely sure of how much each sales assistant is expected to know about the products they?re pushing. Even if they don?t make a concerted effort to become bed experts, they?ll have picked plenty of knowledge up along the way, so don?t be afraid to demand a bit of that knowledge to help with your decision.

This can range from sizes and mattresses to added features like a TV that rises out of the end of the bed or mobility adjustments if you need or want them.

Don?t Feel Like You Need to Buy In-Store

I already mentioned that beds are something that should not necessarily be purchased online. However, you shouldn?t forget that the world?s your oyster when you shop online and you?ll often find better deals, lower prices or quicker delivery when you have multiple retailers competing for your money. As a showroom, they expect people to come in and explore the goods, and even the pushiest salesperson won?t assume that you?ll be able to make an immediate decision.

Indeed, while I spoke of the downsides to buying online, that might ultimately be the direction you choose to go in. Of course, if you?re purchasing an exclusive brand that cannot be found anywhere else, then your price research will be minimal.

Even if you?re in a rush, most bed shops in my experience are located on retail parks and trading estates. Even if you don?t want to go home and sleep on it ? which is tricky if you don?t have a bed ? you?ll probably find a Starbucks nearby where you can get on your phone and find out how much you should expect to pay.

Remember the Practical Elements

If you?re shopping for a replacement, you?ll need to have a plan in mind to get rid of the old one. I?m not proud to admit it, but when I last bought a new bed, the idea was to put the old one in the garage and take care of it later. It?s still there today. Nevertheless, that?s better than nothing and its unlikely that you?ll be able to fit two beds in a single bedroom. Make sure you?ve covered all the costs or have the cash to hand if you?re getting a man with a van to take the old bed away and take every step you can to make for a smooth turnover.

If it’s not a replacement or you?ve already ditched the old bed, you simply need to be available when the bed comes. Most delivery people will take the bed to the correct room, and some will even put it together. If you feel that you won?t be able to do either job yourself, get confirmation that this is the case beforehand. If your preferred retailer doesn’t do it, there will be an alternative out there that will be more than happy to do so.

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