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How Much Money Should You Expect to Spend on a New Mattress - by an Ex-Mattress Salesperson
The most expensive thing in a normal Innerspring mattress is the material in the top 'comfort layers'. Foam beds have the most foam in them, that's one of the reasons why they are often more expensive.
Foam is made of petroleum, and we all know how high the price of oil is right now.
The price of any mattress is determined by the costs in the varying quality of these soft foam layers, as well as the coil system, of course. A stronger mattress will often have more and thicker Innerspring coils which will make it more expensive.
Other Cost Factors that Determine Mattress Costs
How 'fancy' the mattress is made is also a factor. For instance, if it has a pillowtop, that involves more materials and labor, etc. If the mattress has a nicer ticking in Damask or an Organic Fiber, etc. - up goes the price.
Really, you can pay up to five-figures for a Luxury Mattress if you want to. I was actually sorry I didn't have one, once. A guy came in and only wanted the most expensive bed I had on the floor - he didn't even lay down on it before he bought it!
This is something we definitely tried to educate our college kids and newlyweds about: You certainly don't need to spend money on a luxury mattress to get a good night's sleep.
But, unless you're really strapped for cash - the financial jump up in the value and/or mid-range mattress sections can be considerable toward mattress QUALITY (and your sleep) if you can spend just a little bit more. (I'll talk about this more later when I get into mattress construction.)
Because, SURE you can sleep on anything NOW. But gliding into your 30's, 40's on up - yeah, your body and sleep quality will be in a much better place by the time you arrive at those decades if you have given your body the kind of sleep support that it needs up until that time.
The average person spends a THIRD of their lives just sleeping, and you know how much better you feel the next day with a good night's sleep than with a restless and/or painful one. Those sleepless nights add up and take their toll during our aging process.
Name Brands Also Play a Big Role in Mattress Pricing
Also be aware that the NAME BRAND of the mattress plays a major factor in the price. The 'Big S' mattress manufacturers - Sealy, Serta, Simmons and Stearns & Foster - all are big corporations with big expenses to do things like extra sleep & mattress research, testing & analysis and of course, MARKETING.
Believe it or not, you can pay up to an additional $1000 or more JUST for a National Brand Name mattress for those reasons. These things may be of value to you, however - along with their reputations.
The only thing I really have to say about these big brand names is that their reputation is OFTEN what sells the bed for them. BUT, all of these manufacturer's have been sold and tossed around a bit since their reputations were developed. I've heard many customer complaints regarding, 'they're not what they used to be' as often happens when a business passes hands - just FYI.
NEVER buy a 'value' mattress - any mattress with less than a full 10-year manufacturer's warranty - for an adult unless you absolutely have to because of financial reasons. You may like the price, but the quality of the Innerspring will not give very much support for very long and the comfort layers will break down fast.
Value mattresses are Okay for guest rooms that don't get used very often, small children and/or temporary sleeping situations, like a temporary job. If you're going for 4 years of college, SPLURGE a little you deserve to sleep well in college and every phase of your life. And four years is a long time to not sleep comfortably.
Basically, most mattress manufacturers - both the big names and the little guys - make three quality levels of mattresses: Value, Median and Luxury.
These will all vary in cost because of the different quality of materials used within each type of mattress. This is a good resource on the different grades of foam currently used in mattress manufacturing.
What Should You Expect to Spend on a New Mattress by Value, Median or Luxury Grade
Twin / Twin XL
$100 - $300
$300 - $800
$800 - $2000+
$200 - $500
$500 - $1000
$1000 - $4000+
$300 - $600
$600 - $1500
$1500 - $7000+