7 Jan

Project Planning: Adding a Murphy Bed

Category: Wall Beds

With the new year here (thank goodness!) you may be thinking about adding a Murphy bed to your home. Before you start shopping there are several considerations to ensure that you are prepared and choose the right model for your space. This is our project planning guide for adding a Murphy wall bed in any room of your home.

Why Do You Need a Murphy Wall Bed?

plaza wall bed
Plaza wall bed with built-in bookcases, storage and computer workstation. This installation would be ideal in a rec room or family room, rather than a sleeper sofa.

We think the better question to ask is why not add a Murphy bed? Chances are you have a limited amount of space in your home to use for various functions. For instance, most of us have only one extra room which we use to accommodate the occasional overnight guest. The rest of the time, this room is often used as a home office, craft or hobby room, home gym or more. Why take up most of the square footage in the room with a traditional bed when you can mount a Murphy bed to the wall? In addition to freeing up tons of space, a Murphy bed can also come equipped with side piers that include shelving, cabinet storage, a wardrobe, drawers and so much more.

Configure the Necessary Space

Amish collection Hampton wall bed
When the mattress is pulled down from the cabinet, you will need 5 – 6′ of space in front of the cabinet.

The first thing to consider when adding a Murphy bed is the amount of space required. The Murphy bed cabinet must be securely attached to the wall, which will require a foot or two of thickness that protrudes from the wall. Although this is several square feet less than you would need to account for with a traditional bed, it is still important to factor in.

mirage desk wall bed
This horizontal Murphy bed with desk would fit almost anywhere. Just pull the cabinet front down over the desk and leave your work in place.

Another important thing to remember is that when the wall bed is in use, you will need about 5 – 6’ for the mattress when it is pulled down from the cabinet for sleeping (unless you choose a horizontal wall bed). It wouldn’t be a problem putting a small or easily movable piece of furniture, such as a table or chair, in front of the cabinet and moving it when necessary.

Find the Right Wall

As previously noted, adding a Murphy bed requires proper installation by securing the cabinet to a wall. A thin or flimsy wall will not accommodate installation. Then again, a block wall, although sturdy, would require specialized mounting hardware.

Consider the room’s configuration, as well. You won’t want to install a Murphy wall bed where it will interfere with the opening/closing of a door or window when in use.

How Do You Use the Room?

Murphy wall bed system
Make beautiful music or artwork in this guest room cum studio featuring the Arizona wall bed with rustic industrial design.

Consider adding side piers or other features, such as a fold down desk, sofa or table to your Murphy wall bed. This greatly increases functionality. For instance, a wardrobe side pier is an ideal place to store workout equipment and towels while a cubby could hold a mini refrigerator for keeping bottled water handy. If the guestroom is also your home office, a wall bed with desk and side piers that include file cabinets, bookshelves and perhaps a slide out for your CPU or printer would be perfect. All these extra features and more are available with standard side piers or a customized order.

Installation Considerations

After you have measured the space and accounted for all the ways you will use the room, think about installation. At Murphy Beds of San Diego, we have a team of professionals who will both deliver and install your Murphy wall bed and any additional, custom millwork. We do not recommend adding a Murphy bed as a DIY project to ensure your safety and the logistics are properly accounted for.

With this project planning guide, adding a Murphy bed to your home will be nice and easy.

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