How To Find The Perfect Murphy Bed For Your Space

Have you ever thought about adding a Murphy bed to your bedroom design? A convenient and often overlooked option for a bed, the Murphy bed (also called wall bed or pull-down bed) may be the space-saving solution you haven't thought of yet.

While traditional beds are customarily used for bedrooms, a Murphy bed is a great pick for small apartment bedrooms and studios. While you may think you're giving up on that fluffy cloud-like mattress and trading comfort for space, Wallbeds "n" More argues that finding a comfortable mattress for a Murphy bed is just as easy, mainly because they can use almost any kind of mattress, just like traditional beds.

If you're intrigued and want to know more about a Murphy bed, this post will help. We'll go through the pros and cons, why they aren't as popular as one might think (after all, a bed takes up considerable space in a bedroom), and how to find that perfect Murphy bed for your space. Let's get into it!

What is a Murphy bed?

According to Smart Spaces, the Murphy bed was invented in the 1900s by a man named William Lawrence Murphy. He was living in a studio apartment in San Francisco at a time when it was not OK for women to be in a man's bedroom. Cleverly, he designed a bed that could be hidden when not in use so that he could entertain an opera singer he was interested in at the time.

A Murphy bed is a convenient, space-saving sleeping solution much like a trundle bed for kids. It basically fits inside the wall (usually in a cabinet or closet space) and stays there when not in use, therefore freeing up space that the bed would normally take up. Once it's time for bed, you simply pull it down, mattress and all, and go to sleep. In the morning, the bed can be lifted back into the wall until it's needed again. It's that simple.

Pros of a Murphy bed

There are substantial pros of owning a Murphy bed, the main one, of course, is the fact that it seemingly disappears when not in use. According to Mattress Nut, Murphy beds can be used for multiple purposes, as well as act as a nice design element for a bedroom (or room, if in a studio). For example, there are Murphy beds out there that have built-in shelves, storage cubbies, or even convert into a couch when not in use. Furniture that serves multiple purposes is a gift to the small homeowner.

Another awesome convenience of owning a Murphy bed is that the room will look instantly cleaner when it's not in use. A messy bed can change the way a room looks, just as when you enter a room and see a clean, made-up bed with the sheets and comforter nice and smooth. With a Murphy bed, you can easily lift and tuck the bed out of the way, no bedmaking needed, which is great for those early mornings when you're running late to work.

Cons of a Murphy bed

Just as there are a lot of pros to having a Murphy bed, there are also plenty of cons to consider. According to Upgraded Home, while it may seem super convenient to lift the bed and slide it back into the wall, it can become quite tedious to do that every day. 

There's also a significant price difference between a traditional bed and a Murphy. A Murphy bed can cost anywhere from $1,000-$6,000, depending on what you get. Factors include the size of the Murphy bed, which comes available in all traditional sizes: twin, full/double, queen, and king, and whether or not the Murphy bed is a manual design or automatic. When compared to traditional beds, price is definitely a consideration.

Further, with so many other multifunctional options for beds, like futons, sofa beds, and trundles, a Murphy bed might actually prove more of a daily hassle than a convenience. 

Another significant con is the risk of danger when using one. Kids can accidentally fold up the bed while lying on it, or improper lifting can cause it to fall back down. While these risks are minimal, and there have been lots of technological advances that put safety as a priority, the risks still exist.

The rise of the Murphy bed

The Murphy bed has definitely made a comeback after being a thing of the past for so long. But why? The Associated Press suggests the pandemic had something to do with it. With people spending more time at home and looking at their space daily, there was a rise in a desire to create a comfortable and more open living situation.

With the automatic space a Murphy bed provides when folded up, it's a great solution for apartment dwellers or those that live in smaller homes. Even now, though people are venturing outside once again and not stuck  at home anymore, consumers are still looking at the Murphy bed as an optimized design solution, given its space-saving functionality.

The trend of the Murphy bed looks like it's here to stay, and is projected to rise significantly in the future. The biggest challenge will be awareness of the Murphy bed, according to Market Research Future, which is what brands specializing in this bed type will be focused on in their consumer research and plans. We believe you'll be seeing a lot more advertisements and models on the Murphy bed at furniture stores soon.

How to find the perfect Murphy bed

If you're considering a Murphy bed but aren't sure how to find the perfect one, start by making a list of what you want in a bed, and see if a Murphy design fits those needs. For example, if you truly want something customizable and cut to the space you need, a Murphy bed may work. Also, we suggest prioritizing comfort and picking a good mattress that will provide you with restful sleep. Sleep is one of the most essential things you can do for the health of your body, according to the University of Michigan School of Public Health, so don't skimp on a quality mattress.

Also, as reported by The Associated Press, experts emphasize purchasing a Murphy bed from a trusted manufacturer. Do your research, as the term "Murphy bed" is no longer a trademarked name (since 1989). With fewer restrictions in place for the name's use, it becomes that much more important for you to ensure you're getting a true Murphy bed when you make the big-ticket purchase.

Lastly, think about the construction that may have to be done in order to install a Murphy bed. If it can easily fit into an empty closet or cabinet, that's great. Otherwise, installing a Murphy bed may come at a bigger cost that wasn't originally considered.

We hope this post gave you a bit more insight on the Murphy bed and helps make the decision to get one or not a bit easier. While it's not for everyone, it can be the perfect space-saving solution when struggling to free up space in a small room or home.