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How to Buy a Bed for a Child

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Let's face it there are some pretty outstanding beds out there for the more adventurous parents wanting their kids' rooms to stand out from the crowd.

But as well as fulfilling a dream of a fairytale castle, a dinosaur's lair or even the world's largest nest, it's vital for parents to know their children are getting the greatest night's sleep possible, the healthiest mattresses and pillows and the best value for money.

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If you are moving your child out of a crib and buying a child's bed for the first time, your first step is to head into a Bedpost showroom to get an expert opinion on what's best for your child, your budget and your home.

The key questions you need to ask are:

1) Do I need an interim toddler's bed or should I invest in a bed which will last until they're a teen? The height of the bed, or choosing a bed which can work as a bunk and then uncouple to a regular bed may be considerations to help your investment last longer.

2) Is the bed going to be sturdy enough to deal with the type of heavy-duty monkeying around that children are sure to give it? There's no avoiding the fact that a bed will double as a trampoline for a few years at least!

3) Is the mattress hard-wearing? You're going to have to research mattress protectors and make sure your choice of bed is easy to clean. Bed-wetting is often a difficult subject to tackle but the right choice of bed and mattress can help both you and your child deal with it.

4) Is this bed value for money? If you're buying for a slightly older kid - say from seven or eight into their teens - then you should look for options which offer storage, durability and which help your money go a little further. After all, this is the time when your growing children are costing you most in terms of clothes, food and outings so you need to make sure you're making a practical purchase.

5) Is this bed right for my child's room? There's a foot and a half difference in width between a single (92cm) a king single (107cm) and a double (135cm) mattress so it's vital you know your room's dimensions and also consider that growing children may be more comfortable in the wider option if space allows.

6) Is this bed right for my child? This is the most important consideration and you can't make it without actually having your child in tow when you go to buy their new bed. Get them to test-rest any mattress in the same way you would for your own new bed and ask any Bedpost expert to help.

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Whether you're buying baby's first bed, making that move to "big-kid status" or coping with the practicalities of a growing teenager, making the right choice relies on being properly informed of your options. And once you've asked for expert advice on the bed, then you can get about organising how to decorate for your princess, dinosaur hunter or baby bird!