Why and How to Buy a $1000 Mattress

I’m in the market for a new mattress.  That just sounds funny coming from me because I’ve never thought I would say anything like that, let alone write about it.

Frankly, I’ve never “shopped” for a mattress in my life.  I mean I bought mattresses off craigslist before for $50-$100 in college, but it was more like a buying a replacement doormat which didn’t requires any research.

However, the idea of buying a mattress carries a whole new meaning to me.

I have seen the light and I found out that I’ve been missing out big time in life… A good mattress.

Surf & Sand Resort Hotel

My family and I, we had a mini vocation over at Laguna Beach, CA at a Surf & Sand resort hotel.  It was an ocean front room overlooking the ocean on a perfect sunny Orange County weather… it was beautiful.

I’m not sure why I didn’t notice this before, but when I got to the room, I did one of those drop the bag and jump on the bed thingy and I notice how soft and pleasant the bed was.  Maybe I was just tired because of the heat, but man, I did not want to get out of that bed.

So to make long story short, we did our thing for the day and I went to bed and the next morning when I got up… OH MY GOD… I believe I just had the best sleep of my life.

It was so good, I felt refreshed, rejuvenated and so rested, I started taking the bed cover off to find out what type of bed this was.  It was a Stearns & Foster brand queen size bed costing over a $1000 on popular websites and mattress dealers.

Now, $1000 was not something I was expecting.  I never knew mattresses costs that much.  I though at most, compared to mattresses that I’ve bought before, it would cost around $300-$500 at most, and not in the $1000.

But I couldn’t get over how good the sleep was, so I started doing some research.  It could just be me trying to justify my spending, but if you think about it, I think it’s well worth it.

Think with me here…

  • If you do your math, considering you sleep on average about 6-8 hours a night, that equates to about 1/3 of your life.  We don’t spend that much time on your car.
  • Most of these mattresses has 10 – 20 year warranty and it will last you about 10 years.  And at $1000, that breaks down to about $8.33 a month, and $0.27 a day.
  • Just think about waking up every morning feeling refreshed without pain and stiffness.  What kind of effect would that have on your day?  What kind of effect would it have on your productivity and to people you love and work with.

Now, I’m no expert in mattresses, so I won’t tell you what to look for in buying a mattress, but now that I’ve convinced you (I think) in buying a good mattress is worth every penny.  Let me share with you what I’ve learned from my mattress shopping and how to deal with a salesman.

When you walk in to a Mattress store, it feels lot like walking into a used car dealer lot.

You are greeted by a salesman with one single objective: Make a sale.  And I don’t say that in a degrading way at all or that these guys are some sleaze balls like we have stereotype about used car salesman.  They are good people I assume that get paid by commission, so some negotiation stills are needed.

Here are 10 tips I’ve found very helpful

  1. Always ask “What is the best price you can do on this?” Then gauge their facial reaction, if they hesitate, they can negotiate. This question assumes there is room to negotiate, and mattress salespeople will assume you know they can!
  2. Go out for lunch. Tell the salesperson, “I want to grab lunch first and think it over, maybe check out another store, can I have your card?” If the salesperson is good, he will try to keep the conversation going by asking follow-up questions, or being cleaver by saying “Bring your lunch receipt back and I’ll deduct it out of the mattress price”.
  3. After your first discount, ask “What discount can you give me if I use cash?” Cash is King! These financing plans eat up the cost of the sale for the salesperson, and although financing helps close more deals, salespeople are paid on margin (money they make for the company)
  4. Do your research! Some products are price-protected or have “Integrity pricing”. However, if a competitor or the manufacturer offers a great price, often the store you’re at will match or beat it!
  5. Don’t fall in love with the story. In my many years, there are no significant differences between Silk, Cashmere, Alpaca, etc. Find a mattress that is comfortable (in all sleeping positions – so shop in comfy clothes). Comfort is how you feel when you lay down, support is how you feel when you wake up. Don’t buy the sizzle!!!
  6. Warranty sharmanty! Please don’t pay more money for an extended warranty. Please don’t buy a mattress over another based on this either. Manufacturer defects are highly rare, and even if you do get one, it’s a long & tedious process to collect. 15 years, 20 years, 25 years…you’re not going to want to keep it that long anyway. The average “comfort life” of a mattress is 5-7 years (innerspring: Sealy eg) 7-10 years (foam: Tempurpedic eg). Warranty issues usually occur within the first 60 days anyway.
  7. “If I?”. Times are tough! Salespeople are willing to work to close the deal. Once settled on a price ask “If I accept your price, will you throw in two pillows?” If they say “yes” then great! If they say “No” then ask, “Since you’re keeping my pillows, what can you deduct off this price”. Customers fight the PRICE battle, Salespeople fight the VALUE battle.
  8. If the first discount they give is $100, then they can do more. If they give $20, then they have tight margins on that item (or salesperson is good). The more expensive the mattress set, the bigger the available discounts!
  9. Be kind!!! I always gave bigger discounts to nice people and rarely gave discounts to those who were unpleasant.
  10. Be silent! Salespeople are usually conversationalists, so gaps in conversations are uncomfortable for them. They may stick their foot in their mouth. I was more concerned about silent people’s willingness to purchase then disagreeable people.

*BONUS* – “I’m still not sure…” After you’ve “worked the deal thoroughly”, tell the salesperson, “It sounds like a great deal, and I really like the mattress, but I’d still like to think about it before I make a decision. Here is my number, would you mind calling me if you can find an additional discount or rebate?”

These are proven because they were used very effectively every day by a confessing mattress salesman.  I heard that the mantra of these sales guys is to “Never let money walk out the door”. The sales cycle of a mattress shopper is 48 hours. If they leave, odds are, you’ll never see them again. Customers have ALL of the power!!!!

Tell me about your bed.  I still haven’t decide on my mattress yet.  Let me know what mattress you have and how much you spent on them and your experience.

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