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When living in a small apartment or room or entertaining guests for one or more nights in your home, you may wish you had a second or third furnished bedroom. If you don’t have much space, a sofa bed may be an ideal alternative. Each has its benefits and disadvantages. A guest room’s large space may go unused for long periods of time, while some may not like the idea of sitting on bedding when it isn’t being used.
The good news is that there is a third option which can save space, provide storage and offer a comfortable sleeping space for you or your guests. Known as fold-up, wall, and Murphy beds , this space-saving solution can transform any room into a multi-purpose environment.
Benefits of a Murphy Bed
The main benefit of a Murphy bed is that it allows you to create more space in a room. When you have more space, you have more freedom to be creative. Another benefit is that these fold-up beds can be hidden behind nearly anything, from bookshelves to entertainment units. Even those custom Murphy beds which come in many state of the art laminates and woods, offer the benefit of a less cluttered and, therefore, cleaner-looking space.
Wall beds are also incredibly versatile, able to conform to any space while keeping things organized. When guests depart, you simply fold the bed back up and reclaim your space. When guests arrive, their bed can be ready with virtually no effort on your part.
How Fold-Up Beds Work
These beds are, essentially, one box situated inside another. Outside, the bigger box is the casing for the bed. This is what “hides” the Murphy bed when it isn’t in use. Inside this box is where the mattress goes. The inside box is folded down when needed and then folded back up when not needed.
In addition to the mattress in a wall bed, there are legs situated at the ends of either side to keep the bed off the floor when it is being used. Depending on the style of bed, latches may be required when it is folded up so that the bed stays in its upright position.
Other important parts of any wall bed are its pistons, which provide support during folding up and down. It is these pistons which, with the correct amount of tension, allow even the heaviest mattress to be lifted with ease by virtually anyone.
Some fold-up beds are installed right into a wall, which is a great idea if this kind of recess is pre-existing. However, making a recess will require your Murphy bed installers to go several inches into the wall. More commonly, free-standing wall beds are what the majority of customers purchase. This style of bed must be attached to its supporting wall in a secure manner.
Ways to Turn One Room into Two
Virtually any room can be transformed by a wall bed. Below are just a few of several ways that installing a fold-up bed can make your room more useful than ever.
In the Living Room
A sofa bed in the living room is a definite space saver, but it can’t store anything else. The same is true of an entertainment center; it holds your TV and DVR along with movies and other items, but it could be doing more.
By swapping out a static sofa bed and entertainment center with a Murphy bed entertainment center, you can have the best of both worlds. Some combinations offer a roll-away TV wall, while others leave the TV space as a static component. Regardless, the instant extra bed is only a few steps away when guests arrive.
The Convertible Office
An office space is yet another ideal location for a wall bed. There are many elegant designs available in a number of configurations. You can choose a bed that folds down to replace your office space or install a bed-only unit on an opposite wall when you want your office space to be more permanent.
Whatever the case, a wall bed with desk can afford you the opportunity to maintain your workspace without having to rearrange the room in order to have sleeping space for guests or yourself. If separation is needed between the two areas, a simple screen or pocket door can provide what you need.
Craft rooms are for creativity, which is what makes them ideal spaces for fold-up beds. Instead of trying to roll a single bed or fold out a sofa into or out of the room, all that’s needed is to pull the bed down. Today’s wall beds can include anything you need, including nooks and crannies to store all of your craft supplies.
With so many options, there’s no need to have to relocate any of your craft projects because folding down the bed won’t disturb anything.
Split a Studio
If you live in a smaller space, such as a studio apartment, this is where a fold-up bed can really shine. You can convert your space for living and sleeping, simply by raising and lowering your bed. These kinds of beds make it easy to define your space and keep it free of clutter, which is another important aspect of living in a small space.
With a free-standing bed, it can be easy to rearrange your space when you need a change, or when you are adding another function to your apartment, such as a small office. You can also choose a bed with closet space for even more versatility.
Should I Get a Murphy Bed?
Depending on its size, a traditional bed can take up several square feet of room, but a wall bed can allow you to reclaim all of that space. You can still enjoy a luxuriously comfortable mattress in your bedroom; the only difference is that you get the best of both worlds because you can free up lots of room in just a few minutes by making the bed and then folding it up.
The same is true in the guest room. If you’ve ever wanted another room in your home, a Murphy bed allows you to have it, but without the costs of renovating. You can move the bed into the room and, instead of keeping that room reserved for guests, you can use more of your home’s space.
Mattress Types and Direction
If you are used to having a mattress and a box spring, switching to a fold-up bed will require a bit of adjustment. This is because the depth of the bed doesn’t allow for a box spring. As well, the weight of the box spring wouldn’t allow the bed to be raised or lowered with ease.
However, with today’s pillow-top mattresses, you don’t need a box spring. Or, if you already have a mattress you love, you can find a bed that fits it or have a wall bed custom-made for it, depending on your budget .
When you think of a fold-up bed, you may think of the kind of product typical of the traditional wall beds in the SF Bay area that you reach up to pull down vertically. However, these beds are also available in horizontal configurations. Homes with narrow walls may benefit more from the vertical style, while homeowners wishing to offer space for guests that can also be used at other times may opt for the horizontally-mounted variety.
The Importance of Expertise
When looking for a Murphy bed, it’s important to ensure that it will not only fit your mattress but has been designed to fit your desired purpose. However, even the most attractively designed wall bed will serve no purpose unless it operates properly and has been correctly secured. This is why it’s so important to ensure you obtain the advice of professionals when choosing and installing your fold-up bed.
Bay Home & Window have been designing and installing custom wall beds and other solutions for over 20 years. Our installation team is one of the most experienced in the country. If you’ve been considering the many benefits of a Murphy bed and are in the San Francisco Bay area, you are eligible for a free in-home design consultation . Get the expert advice you need by calling 888-766-5919 or by booking your appointment online.