Sofa Bed Vs Wall Bed: What’s Best For Your Small Space?

With the increasing prices of homes in the real estate market, people have resolved to utilize every single square foot of the space that they have. As a result, small space living has grown to become more and more common among many households. This is why people have resolved to look for furniture that will take less space and allow them to make the most of their small floor space.

Fortunately, people have discovered various ways to transform furniture, particularly with beds that are spacious and convertible. And the two main categories of this furniture is the sofa bed and the wall bed (also known as a Murphy bed). But while both options may enable you to maximize the little space in your living room, they are quite a number of differences between them.

Both come in quite different styles and this is why those interested in transforming furniture get stuck whether to buy a sofa bed or a wall bed. To help you, we will first explain what this two furniture are, their differences, and the pros and cons of each. By the end of this article, you will be able to make a well-informed decision regarding which type will fit your space-saving needs.

With that in mind, here is a detailed guide on sofa bed vs wall bed: what’s best for your small space.

Want to buy a Sofa bed? Check our articles : Top 5 Best Comfy Sofa Beds of 2019 before make your choice !

What Is a Sofa Bed?

When most people think of a space-saving bed, this is the first option that often comes to their minds. And in fact, you have most likely slept on one at some point in your life if you try to remember well. It may have been at your friend’s sleepover or while you were visiting your uncle who lived in the other town.

One thing that makes sofa beds more appealing and common among many households is their dual purpose. This makes them more functional. During the day, this piece of furniture will serve as a normal seat but then convert into a comfortable bed during the night.

A standard sized sofa bed often comes equipped with an averagely-sized mattress, although it may not be like that standard-sized mattress that you have in your regular bed. Unlike regular beds, their mattresses are quite thin and flexible. This is for the reason that they have to fold up inside the sofa during the day when the mattress is not in use.

In terms of construction, a standard sofa bed will feature a folding metal frame that is firmly attached to it. When you want to use it as a bed, you simply remove the cushions, lift the frame up and out and unfold it as the mattress gets to stay on top of the frame. To convert it back to a sofa, you just fold the end of the bed over and then lift the frame as you lower it inside the sofa.

What Is a Wall Bed?

A wall bed, also known as a murphy bed, is quite different from a sofa bed in various ways. Basically, it is a simple bed that comes with a hinge for connecting it to the wall. Unlike a sofa bed, a wall bed can only be used only as a bed. When not being used as a bed, the entire platform will be swinging up against your wall.

In terms of construction, a normal wall bed features a robust metal frame as well as a mattress that is just the normal size. The mattress is relatively larger compared to the standard sofa bed mattress which is specifically designed for folding. This means that you will find the wall bed quite a little bit comfortable than a sofa bed thanks to the thicker mattress.

wall bed

A wall bed’s mattress rests on the platform’s beechwood slats which provide optimal comfort and support. Wall beds operate with the use of a hinged counter-balanced system. This is what makes them easy to fold up and down.

The bed comes with a safety mechanism that works together with its weight to keep it in position. This prevents the bed from folding or opening on its own while you are asleep. To better suit the space, wall beds can be designed to either open vertically or horizontally. Just like sofa beds, wall beds come in various options and some even provide multiple functions. For example, some seem to fully disappear while others feature shelving on the front.

What to Consider When Choosing Between a Wall Bed and a Sofa Bed

Should I choose a sofa bed or a wall bed?

This is one question that nearly everybody asks himself or herself when looking for a piece of space-saving furniture. However, the answer to this question will depend on your current requirements. Ideally, it will depend on your entrance to the room that you plan to use, whether you live in a walk-up and the measurements of your living room.

To better understand which type of convertible bed is best for you, below is a comparison based on various factors:

  • Comfort Factor

To most people, comfort comes out as a major factor for consideration when looking for a bed. However much space you may lack, you will still need to choose a product that will be comfortable for you or your guests to sleep on. Talking of comfort, a wall bed proved to be more comfortable than a sofa bed thanks to its large mattress. Most come with a mattress that is just the same size as that of a regular bed. It is the thickness of the same that provides more cushioning which in turn translates to more comfort. Wall beds also use a sturdy platform to hold the mattress, making them provide a large surface for support. Besides, you have a greater variety to choose from when it comes to the mattress.

On the other hand, most sofa beds feature a rather thin mattress, often with a thickness of between 4 to 5 inches. This is because the mattresses have to be flexible enough to fold up into the sofa beds. Although it may not be as comfortable as a wall bed, you may not notice a very big difference in the level of comfort if you just use it for a night or two. It is also worth mentioning that sofa bed mattresses have improved over the years. Today, you will find a product like the Panana 3 Seater Linen Fabric Sofa Modern Settee Couch#ad which will give you just the same support and cushioning as of a wall bed.


Unlike in wall beds, the mattress goes directly on top of the metal frame in the sofa bed. The metal frame has metal bars going across and without those bars, the mattress would sink. However, in cheaper sofa beds, these support bars can add to the discomfort by making you feel the bars as you sleep. This is why you should always choose a sofa bed with a thick mattress or the much comfortable air mattresses. This way, you won’t feel any discomfort even after it has had several years of use.

Generally, when you are buying a wall bed or sofa bed just to provide an occasional place for your guests to sleep on, comfort may not be a very big factor.

  • Convenience Factor

Most space-saving beds will require you to set up the bed every time you want to sleep. Therefore, when comparing the two space-saving options, the Murphy beds vs Sleeper beds, convenience should also be considered. A wall bed is very easy to set up when you want to sleep. You simply pull down the bed into position and jump right in.

Likewise, you won’t need to have a lot of muscle to get your Sleeper bed ready. You simply remove the cushions and pull it out and you are done! It will take you seconds to create an instant spare bed.

  • Space Savings

When it comes to space savings, you will find some wall bed models to come with additional features. For example, some will have integrated cabinetry and shelving. This means you will get to save on the space that would be used to install the cabinets and shelves.

However, a sofa bed is the most excellent solution when space is a big problem in your home. Thanks to its dual functionality, you will be using one space for two very important and large furniture – a bed and a sofa. This makes sleeper chairs ideal and most preferred for those households that require extra space to add an extra bed or sofa. Besides, you will save money since you won’t have to go out and buy a separate bed or sofa.

Sofa bed and Wall bed pros and cons

The above are some of the factors that will help you determine the best space-saving option for your home. But to help you make a more solid decision, we will provide you with a comparison of the sofa bed and Murphy bed pros and cons:

Sofa bed pros and cons

The Pros of a sofa bed

sofa proIt is just the size of a twin bed thus occupies very little space in your home, which makes it ideal for a single person.

sofa proYou don’t need to add extra seats since it can be used as a sofa during the day.

sofa proThe cost is very minimal when compared to wall beds which cost up to two times more.

sofa proA daybed with trundle offers your guests with additional sleeping area and sometimes storage area.

sofa proYou don’t have to move furniture around for you to have full use of the sofa bed.

sofa proAvailable in a wide variety of styles and finishes.

The Cons of a sofa bed

sofa cons Most sofa beds can only be used by one person. However, some provide additional sleeping space like the Yaheetech Luxury Fabric Sofa Bed 3 Seater#ad.


Wall bed pros and cons

The Pros of the wall bed

sofa pro Are available in a wide variety of sizes including the queen size and king size for those who require extra length.

sofa pro Offers adequate sleeping space for both you and your guests.

sofa pro You will not need for more than bedding necessities like the pillowcases, bedsheets, or blankets.

sofa pro Available in a variety of styles and finishes.

The Cons of the wall bed

sofa cons Offers you no additional seating area when it is not in use as a bed.

sofa cons They are up to two times expensive when compared to sofa beds.

sofa cons In most cases, you will have to move chairs and furniture for you to open the wall bed.

Want to buy a Sofa bed? Check our articles : Top 5 Best Comfy Sofa Beds of 2019 before make your choice !

Sofa Bed Vs Wall Bed: Final verdict

When buying a piece of space-saving furniture, certain factors need to be in your mind. Going through the pros and cons, you will realize that the sofa bed seems a little better option.

While they are both great inventions, saving space with a sleeper bed is definitely the smartest move for someone living in a small space, especially if you are single. You can keep it as a sofa every other time and convert it into a bed whenever the need arises. You just have to ensure that you store your pillows and blankets elsewhere if you are looking for a very comfy one.

Also, you can consider getting yourself a high quality and more comfortable one like the Stunning 3 Seat Designer Sofa Bed#ad. Although it will be quite pricey, it will be still ridiculously cheaper compared to the price of a simple wall bed. Besides, it will provide you with the comfort and the additional space of a wall bed.

However, your final choice will depend on your personal preferences and what works better for you. So if your main aim is just getting the most comfortable space-saving furniture with lots of sleeping space, you will most likely go with the wall bed. This may also be a good idea if you are going to have guests who you expect to stay for some time. So, the bottom line is to just decide on which one specifically works best for you and your needs and have a happy shopping experience!