Considering you spend 6-9 hours a day sleeping, the decision to purchase a mattress shouldn’t be taken lightly. In addition to being one of the most important products you’ll own in a lifetime, it can also be the most expensive. See what you can do to get a better value from your mattress purchase, and find out the best place to buy a mattress you’ll actually love to sleep on!
High-End Mattress Stores
One of the benefits of buying your mattress from a brand-name store that only does mattress sales is that you’ll be focused on getting the job done. All of the sales reps are ready to answer your most pressing mattress questions, and you’ll likely have a larger selection of products to choose from. You can take your time, test out the mattresses, and find all accessories in one place. They usually have a very good warranty and return policy, as well as shipping and financing offers.
Be ready to pay more for the mattress stores experience, however. Depending on the brand name, you can pay thousands for the mattress, frame, and protectors that they will push you to buy.
Bargain Mattress Stores
If you’re not into labels, and are savvy about how mattresses are made and priced, you can sometimes get a good deal on a box spring or set from those discount mattress stores you see in many downtowns. Be aware, however, that if a price seems too good to be true, it usually is. $100 mattresses aren’t designed to last very long, and you should expect to pay around the same price from the discount store as you would for a similarly-priced model on sale from a high-end store.
Be sure you ask a lot of questions and spend a realistic amount on your next mattress. Bargain mattress stores don’t usually have a reputation as the best place to buy a mattress, but they aren’t always the worst, either. If in doubt, ask around, and check the ratings from the BBB for complaints or consumer issues to be aware of. (Always read the fine print on your purchase contract. Returns may be difficult or impossible!)
Furniture and Retail Stores
Many of the big furniture warehouses offer a good selection of mattresses, both as part of a bedroom set and as an individual product purchase. Some people swear that these locations are the best place to buy a mattress, even though the sales reps may not be the most educated on the products they are selling. If you’re willing to do your own research, find the best product for your needs, and watch holiday sales for amazing markdowns, you can find the mattress of your dreams at a furniture store for 30% off or more.
Just be wary of their return or warranty policies, since mattresses are among some of the products that may have exceptions to their generous satisfaction guarantees. You will also want to be very clear on whether you need a box spring; some of the newer, firmer mattresses are built to be used with a flat foundation and won’t need this extra component.
Wholesale and Club Retailers
Paying a membership to shop has its perks. Most of the big-box wholesale clubs, such as BJ’s and Sam’s Club, also sell mattresses. You’ll most likely find the largest selection online, which means you will be buying sight-unseen for the most part. If you can combine your club discount with seasonal sales (such as Labor Day and President’s Day), you can usually get a great deal on a mattress and have it shipped to your door for free! Check your club sales ads often for the best pricing year-round.
It’s important to understand that mattresses are priced differently across brands, chains, and locations. Just because a mattress is made by a particular company at one store, doesn’t mean you can expect the same mattress to be available at another. Each store chain has a different agreement with the big mattress brands, and several “house brands” are also made available to give shoppers a wide range of prices to choose from. The best way to know if a mattress is high quality is to test it out yourself. Whether you try it in-store, or take advantage of the 30-day trial, you can tell the most about a product in person. (Be aware of return or re-stocking fees that can cut into your “free” trial. Ask what would happen if you weren’t happy and use it to determine whether to buy from a store or not.)
The Best Place to Buy a Mattress: Where the Deals Are
The best place to buy a mattress may fully depend on how firm the price is – not the mattress itself. Many places will work with you to find a price that both the buyer and seller are comfortable with. Big box retailers, however, aren’t as likely to work with you on price. If you’re set on negotiating, look for a store with lots of markup on the price; those national, high-end chains usually have a quite a bit of wiggle room to work with.
Finally, if a store won’t lower their price – no matter how you ask – you may find you can haggle on other aspects of your purchase. Can you get a more lenient return policy? Is there free shipping to be gained? Will they throw in a discount on a foundation or perhaps a free set of pillows? If you’re determined to get the best deal on your mattress purchase, remember that you’ll probably buy a whole set of new products to give you the best night’s sleep. Don’t be afraid to ask for a discount if you plan on spending a small fortune at any one retailer.
A good night’s sleep can be in your future, at a great price, if you’re willing to work at it. Don’t make hasty decisions and be prepared to search a bit before you buy.