Best Sleeper Sofas & Sofa Beds 2012

Apartment Therapy's Annual Guide

Sofa beds may get a bad rap but they're lifesavers for small spaces – or any home that is expecting guests, for that matter. Not all sleepers will break your back ... or the bank. In fact, there are quite a few really good sofa beds out there if you know where to look. And, hey, that's what we're here for! Check out this roundup of the best sleeper sofas available today.

Pin it button big

Returning Favorites
Twilight Sleeper Sofa from Design Within Reach, $1785
Great modern design, has more in common with a daybed than a typical sofa bed.
Patterson Sofa from American Leather, approximately $3000
American Leather sleepers are often referred to as the best of the best for both comfort and quality.
Soto Sleeper from Design Within Reach, $3910
Conservative styling plus comfort equals a sofa that will last you a lifetime.
Manstad from Ikea, $800
This corner sofa bed gets high marks for convenience (it includes storage) and has gotten great reviews from readers.

Pin it button big

Reader Favorites
Ektop from Ikea, $650
We'll admit that we were surprised that so many readers heaped praise on Ikea's sleepers. Both the Manstad (a returning favorite) and the Ektop have reviewed very highly.
Alex Upholstered Sofa from Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, $1875
One commenter boasts that this is the only sofa bed to own, praising it as both a comfortable couch and a nice bed.
English Queen Sleeper Sofa, approximately $2000
A few commenters have remarked about how much they love their sofa from Carolina Chair – although they also recommend upgrading to the Air Dream mattress.
Cornell Queen Sleeper Sofa, $1049
We've heard good things about Sleepers in Seattle, both on our site and across the web.

Pin it button big

New Additions
Flat Out Sleeper Sofa from Blu Dot, $1099
This stylish option is similar to a futon. We love the simple styling and poppy red color.
Gus Modern Flip, $1599
As the name suggests, the seat of this sofa flips out, meaning there's no cross bar to dig into the sleeper's back.
Encore Sofa from Room & Board, $899
Similar to the Flat Out – except that this one gives you the option of folding down three separate sections of the back of the sofa.
The Stella Sofa from Sofa.com, $2060
Sofa.com has just arrived in New York and we're already hearing good things about their offerings. This little two seater would be a great option for small spaces.

Reader Reports
We rely on our readers to let us know furniture behaves in the real world. It's one thing to sit on a sofa for a few minutes in a showroom; it's quite another to live with on a daily basis. Here's what some of our commenters have said about sofa beds:

I have a Manstad from IKEA and love it. It's incredibly comfortable, easy to pull out and set up for guests, the storage is great, and it looks fantastic. I was actually sold on buying one after I spent a long weekend with friends and slept well on their Manstad. Yes, traditional sleeper sofas are typically heavy and awful, but after moving mine this summer, I have no issues with endorsing it. - potterychick
We looked into www.carolinachair.com based on EnergyNet's recommendation. We received our new sofa the other day and love it. With our upgrades, we paid $2500 including shipping. It's construction is comparable to a much more expensive sofa. Because they build every sofa custom, we were able to adjust the dimensions of the sofa to fit our bodies for a minimal upcharge. We upgraded to the Air Dream mattress for just $250. We've slept on it, and it's very comfortable. Because it's part air mattress, you can adjust the firmness. They have about twelve zillion fabrics to choose from. And they have literally the best customer service I have experienced in years. It was a little weird to buy a sofa without sitting on it, but it turns out the most important thing is the dimensions of the sofa. We sat in enough sofas to know the dimensions we wanted, and when the sofa appeared it was perfect. - unprotectedwrecks
I own the only sleeper sofa I've ever liked, and its fantastic. Its an amazingly comfy couch, and a better bed than any of the expensive futons I've owned. Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams - Alex II Deluxe Queen Sleeper. It was expensive, and worth EVERY. SINGLE. PENNY. We've had several guests extend their stay just to sleep on this bed, and its the best couch I've ever sat on. Plus its slipcovered (easily removeable), and I can get new slipcovers in more colors whenever I want. - sandyliz
Another vote for the Room & Board air coil - it feels like a regular mattress! - slangevar
I got the Valencia sleeper from Sleepers In Seattle. Almost got a Comfort Sleeper from them, but $2500 was really not in my budget. I got the valencia for under a grand..and it is still super comfy and compact. Also got the spring-free latex mattress, which I've heard nothing but good things about from my guests. - janeh

Previous Years Best Sleeper Sofa Guides
Best Sleeper Sofas & Sofa Beds 2008
Best Sleeper Sofas & Sofa Beds 2009
Best Sleeper Sofas & Sofa Beds 2010

More Sleeper Sofas on Apartment Therapy
Bedroom in a Minute: All About Sleeper Sofas
How to Shop for a Sleeper Sofa
Daybeds, Futons & Sleeper Sofas: 12 Resources for Small Space Sleeping

(Images: As linked above.)

49 Comments