The Ultimate Guide to Buying a Futon: Perfect Choices for Your Home


Are you looking for a versatile piece of furniture that can function both as a couch and a bed? If yes, then a futon might be the perfect addition to your home. Futons are great for small spaces, guest rooms, or even living rooms where you want to maximize functionality without compromising on style. However, choosing the right futon can be a daunting task with so many options available on the market. This guide will help you understand how to buy a futon that suits your needs and preferences.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know about buying a futon. From understanding different types of futons to considering the best materials and styles, we’ve got you covered. Whether you’re a first-time futon buyer or looking to upgrade your existing one, our tips and insights will make your shopping experience smooth and enjoyable.

Understanding Futons: A Brief Overview

Before diving into how to buy a futon, it’s essential to understand what a futon is. Originating from Japan, a traditional futon is a thin mattress that can be folded and stored away during the day. In the Western context, futons are typically sofa beds that consist of a mattress and a frame, which can be easily converted from a couch to a bed.

Types of Futons

  1. Bifold Futons: These are the most common type of futons, consisting of a mattress that folds once in the middle. They are easy to convert from a sofa to a bed and are perfect for daily use.
  2. Trifold Futons: These futons have a mattress that folds twice, making them more compact when in the sofa position. They are ideal for smaller spaces.
  3. Loveseat Futons: These are smaller, bifold futons designed to seat two people. They are great for compact living spaces or guest rooms.

Factors to Consider When Buying a Futon

Choosing the right futon involves considering several factors. Here’s a breakdown of what you need to keep in mind:

1. Purpose and Usage

Think about how you plan to use the futon. Is it for everyday use in the living room, occasional use in the guest room, or as a space-saving solution in a small apartment? Your answer will determine the type of futon you should buy. For frequent use, look for a futon with a sturdy frame and a high-quality mattress.

2. Size and Space

Measure the space where you plan to place the futon. Futons come in various sizes, including twin, full, queen, and king. Ensure that the futon fits comfortably in your space when both folded and unfolded. If you have limited space, consider a loveseat or trifold futon.

3. Frame Material

Futon frames are typically made of wood, metal, or a combination of both. Each material has its pros and cons:

  • Wooden Frames: These are sturdy and add a warm, classic look to your room. They can be heavy and more challenging to move.
  • Metal Frames: These are lightweight and usually less expensive. They offer a modern look but may not be as durable as wooden frames.
  • Combination Frames: These frames use both wood and metal, offering a balance of durability and style.

4. Mattress Material and Comfort

The comfort of your futon largely depends on the mattress. Here are the common types of futon mattresses:

  • Foam Mattresses: These are lightweight, affordable, and provide decent comfort and support. They are ideal for occasional use.
  • Cotton Mattresses: Traditional Japanese futons are made of cotton. These mattresses are firm and can be folded easily. However, they may require more maintenance.
  • Innerspring Mattresses: These mattresses have built-in springs, offering better support and comfort, similar to traditional beds. They are suitable for everyday use.
  • Memory Foam Mattresses: These are the most comfortable and supportive but can be expensive. They conform to your body’s shape, providing excellent comfort for sleeping and sitting.

5. Style and Aesthetics

Your futon should match the décor of your room. Futons come in various styles, from modern to traditional. Consider the color, design, and upholstery of the futon. Some futons come with removable covers, making it easy to change the look whenever you want.

How to Buy a Futon Without Overdoing It

Now that you know the factors to consider, let’s break down the steps to buying the perfect futon for your home.

Step 1: Determine Your Budget

Futons can range from affordable to high-end. Determine how much you’re willing to spend before you start shopping. Keep in mind the total cost, which includes the frame and mattress. Investing in a high-quality futon can save you money in the long run, as it will last longer and provide better comfort. Look for sales, discounts, or package deals that can help you get more value for your money.

Step 2: Measure Your Space

Measure the area where you plan to place the futon. Note the dimensions for both the sofa and bed positions. This will help you choose a futon that fits perfectly in your space. Consider the surrounding furniture and ensure there’s enough room to convert the futon from a sofa to a bed without any obstructions. Use a tape measure to get accurate measurements, and jot down the numbers to refer to while shopping.

Step 3: Choose the Right Frame

Decide on the frame material based on your preference and budget.

  • Wooden Frames: Offer a sturdy and classic look. They come in various finishes and can blend well with traditional décor.
  • Metal Frames: Lightweight and modern, metal frames are typically easier to move and assemble.
  • Combination Frames: Provide a mix of durability and aesthetic appeal, often featuring wood arms with a metal body for added stability.

Think about the ease of assembly and whether you need a frame that can be easily disassembled for moving.

Step 4: Select the Mattress

Choose a mattress that provides the right balance of comfort and support.

  • Memory Foam Mattresses: Offer excellent comfort and support, perfect for frequent use. They mold to your body, providing a customized sleeping experience.
  • Innerspring Mattresses: Provide traditional support with built-in springs. These are great for those who prefer a firmer mattress.
  • Foam Mattresses: Lightweight and affordable, suitable for occasional use. They are easy to fold and store.
  • Cotton Mattresses: Traditional and firm, these are ideal if you prefer a more authentic Japanese-style futon.

Consider any specific needs, such as allergies or back support, when choosing your mattress.

Step 5: Consider the Style

Pick a futon style that complements your room’s décor.

  • Modern Styles: Sleek lines and minimalistic designs can make a statement in contemporary settings.
  • Traditional Styles: Rich wooden frames and plush mattresses suit more classic interiors.
  • Convertible Styles: Some futons come with additional features like adjustable arms or multi-positional backs.

Check if the futon comes with a removable cover, which allows you to change the look easily. Removable covers are also practical for cleaning and maintenance.

Step 6: Test Before You Buy

If possible, visit a store to test the futon.

  • Comfort Test: Sit and lie down on it to check for comfort and support. Ensure it feels good both as a sofa and a bed.
  • Ease of Conversion: Test how easily the futon converts from a sofa to a bed. Look for smooth mechanisms that don’t require too much effort.
  • Stability Check: Make sure the frame feels stable and doesn’t wobble. This is especially important if the futon will be used frequently.

Online reviews can also provide insights into the quality and durability of the futon if you can’t test it in person.

Step 7: Read Reviews and Compare

Before making a final decision, read customer reviews and compare different futons.

  • Comfort: Look for reviews that mention the comfort level of both the mattress and the frame.
  • Durability: Pay attention to comments about the long-term durability of the futon.
  • Ease of Use: Find out how easy it is to convert the futon from a sofa to a bed and back.

Comparing multiple options will help you find the best futon for your needs. Take note of any recurring issues mentioned in reviews, such as uncomfortable mattresses or difficult assembly.

Additional Tips for Buying a Futon

  • Check the Warranty: Ensure the futon comes with a warranty, which can provide peace of mind and protection against defects.
  • Consider Delivery and Assembly: Check if the store offers delivery and assembly services, which can save you time and hassle.
  • Look for Sales and Promotions: Futons often go on sale during major holidays or end-of-season clearances, so keep an eye out for deals.

Top Futon Recommendations

To help you get started, here are some top futon recommendations based on different needs and preferences:

  1. Best Overall: DHP Emily Futon Sofa Bed – This modern and stylish futon is perfect for any room. It features a split-back design, allowing multiple positions for lounging and sleeping.
  2. Best for Small Spaces: Nirvana Futons Westfield Wood Futon Frame – This compact and elegant wooden frame futon is great for small apartments or guest rooms. It comes with a comfortable innerspring mattress.
  3. Best for Comfort: Novogratz Brittany Sofa Futon – This futon offers excellent comfort with its memory foam mattress and stylish design. It’s perfect for everyday use.
  4. Best Budget Option: Mainstay Memory Foam Futon – This affordable futon provides good comfort and support with its memory foam mattress. It’s ideal for occasional use or as an extra bed.

Maintaining Your Futon

To ensure your futon lasts long and remains comfortable, follow these maintenance tips:

Rotate the Mattress

Rotating and flipping your futon mattress regularly is crucial for maintaining its shape and comfort. This helps prevent uneven wear and sagging, which can lead to discomfort and reduce the mattress’s lifespan. Aim to rotate your mattress every three months.

  • Bifold Mattresses: Rotate the mattress 180 degrees.
  • Trifold Mattresses: Rotate and flip each section if possible to ensure even wear.
  • Innerspring and Memory Foam Mattresses: These may not require flipping, but rotating them helps distribute wear evenly.

By rotating your mattress, you ensure that the weight and pressure applied to it are evenly distributed, which helps maintain its structural integrity and comfort over time.

Clean the Frame

Keeping the futon frame clean is essential for both hygiene and the longevity of the futon. Dust and clean the frame periodically to prevent the accumulation of dirt and debris, which can cause damage over time.

  • Wooden Frames: Use a soft cloth and a mild wood cleaner to wipe down the frame. Avoid using water, as it can damage the wood.
  • Metal Frames: Wipe down with a damp cloth and mild detergent. Ensure the frame is dry to prevent rust.
  • Combination Frames: Clean according to the materials used, treating wood and metal parts appropriately.

Regular cleaning not only maintains the appearance of the frame but also helps in identifying any potential issues, such as loose screws or joints, which can be fixed before they become major problems.

Use a Mattress Cover

A removable mattress cover is an excellent investment for protecting your futon. It safeguards the mattress from spills, stains, and general wear and tear, making it easier to keep clean.

  • Waterproof Covers: Ideal for protecting against spills and moisture.
  • Fabric Covers: Available in various colors and patterns, these can enhance the aesthetic appeal of your futon while providing protection.
  • Removable and Washable: Look for covers that are easy to remove and machine washable for convenience.

Using a mattress cover not only keeps the futon clean but also allows you to easily change the look of your futon to match your room’s décor.

Avoid Overloading

Overloading the futon with heavy items when in the sofa position can lead to damage. Excessive weight can strain the frame and cause the mattress to sag or the frame to bend.

  • Seating Capacity: Stick to the recommended seating capacity. Most futons are designed to comfortably seat two to three people.
  • Storage: Avoid using the futon as a storage area for heavy items. When not in use, keep the futon clear to maintain its shape and function.
  • Careful Use: Encourage gentle use, especially if children frequently use the futon. Jumping or rough use can quickly wear out both the mattress and the frame.

By avoiding overloading, you help maintain the structural integrity and comfort of the futon, ensuring it lasts longer.

Additional Maintenance Tips

  • Spot Clean Spills Immediately: Address any spills or stains as soon as they occur. Use a damp cloth and mild detergent for spot cleaning. Avoid soaking the mattress to prevent mold and mildew.
  • Check and Tighten Screws: Periodically check the frame for loose screws or bolts. Tighten them as needed to maintain the stability and safety of the futon.
  • Sunlight and Ventilation: Occasionally airing out the mattress in direct sunlight can help eliminate odors and reduce moisture build-up. Ensure the room is well-ventilated to prevent mold and mildew.
  • Avoid Direct Sunlight on Upholstery: Prolonged exposure to direct sunlight can cause the upholstery to fade. Position your futon away from windows or use curtains to block direct sunlight.


Buying a futon for your home can be a great investment if you choose wisely. By understanding the different types of futons, considering factors like size, frame material, and mattress comfort, and following a step-by-step approach, you can find the perfect futon that meets your needs and preferences. Remember to read reviews and compare options before making your final decision.

A well-chosen futon not only adds functionality to your space but also enhances its aesthetic appeal. With the right futon, you can enjoy the best of both worlds—a comfortable sofa by day and a cozy bed by night. Happy futon shopping!

Leave a Response

Kris S
Make yourself timeless and confident every where by simply dressing sharp all the time. Fashion is expensive, Style is timeless, but your mind and body can have them both without emptying your savings. Fashion Style should not be expensive and if you know where to look for right information, you're in the right page of your life.