Futon Beds vs. Sofa Beds

Futon beds and sofa beds are popular in college dorm rooms and guest houses. When space is scarce, they are perfect, because you can put the bed up after a good night’s sleep. In some cases, families want extra sleeping space in their family room or attic, so that relatives can stay when they are in town. There are advantages and disadvantages to both futons and sofa beds. Let’s look at the good and bad of both.


Futon beds are a rather casual piece of furniture. When you compare it to the sofa bed, it is sometimes less desirable, because the sofa bed looks like a couch. A futon really gives the appearance of informality. The reason is that futons are generally associated with college-age kids, and people renting their first apartment. If you put a futon in some living rooms, it looks like it doesn’t belong there. A sofa bed, however, blends in with more traditional surroundings. The sofa bed can be purchased to match your current living room furniture. This is a very classy way to add some sleeping space to your house. With a futon, 1 positive thing is that you have the option of covering it with a new color when you change your décor.

Comfort and Variety

Sitting on futon beds is not as comfortable as sitting on a sofa bed. The mattress is very flat, and does not give much support. That being said, it is firm. If someone likes a firm mattress, then they will be comfortable on a futon. The sofa bed has a softer mattress. A sofa bed can have springs in the mattress, which can make it uncomfortable. Sofa beds typically come in 1 size, while futons have a few different choices. You can have twin, double, full size, and even queen sized futons. With a sofa bed they are usually a double. A double is the best to fit under the couch. Sometimes a double is just not big enough. You may have all different sizes of guests. A double, however, is a good size for a lot of guests, and can comfortably sleep a couple. If you plan on getting a lot of use out of the bed you choose, then you might want to go with the futon.

Some More Factors

Futon beds are usually less expensive than a sofa bed. Sofa beds can cost hundreds of dollars, depending on what kind you get. A futon runs around 80 dollars, or a little more, depending on the size. Another down side to a sofa bed is that they are hard to move. Sofa beds are twice as heavy as a regular couch. Futon beds are easier to move and easier to store. Futons are also easier to clean than a sofa bed.


You can make a decision based on the one that best serves your needs. It really depends on what room you are adding a futon or sofa bed to, to determine which one will be better. Futons beds are better in cost, but sofa beds are better on appearance.