A high-quality, well-made cotton futon will last a long time. DH and I have been sleeping on ours since 1999, and it's still in great shape. They do tend to get firmer with time, but if you like a firm bed like we do, that'll be fine. We turn ours regularly, and steam clean it a few times a year, and then drag it out onto the lawn on a sunny day to dry and air. (Put it on cinderblocks or something similar, while it's drying, to get airflow underneath.) I expect ours to last at least another ten years. (Ours is not innerspring. I don't think it's a true futon if it is.) A wool topper will also prolong the life of the futon, as will waterproof protection if you have small children or pets.<br><br>
Cheap futons won't last long at all, and will be very uncomfortable after only a few years, because the stuffing will shift around. My old roommate and I bought one cheap when we were just out of college. I slept on it for a few months and it was shot.<br><br>
I highly recommend White Lotus futons. All our mattresses are white lotus futons, and they're the best futons in the business, I think. And no, I'm not affiliated at all. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink">
Thanks for all you responses and reccomendations. Dh and I prefer firm, he prefers very firm, but this bed will be for our sons'. For some reason I think the firmer a mattress is the longer it will last, not sure why I think that. I think the kiddos would do fine with a firm mattress, and I think they are better for your back.<br><br>
Anyway we are looking at both futons and latex mattresses, full size, trying to find the best warranty, quality, comfort for our budget. We will be putting it on a platform frame, hopefully homemade. We may eventually get a bunk bed that can also be two separte beds with full on bottom/twin on top, as we are expecting our third in April. So we have a few months to research and build.<br><br>
Thanks again and keep it comming.
<p>I had two futons that both molded quickly and got flat and hard. (seriously tortured me through 2 pregnancies!) I am not a fan of them at all. I find natural latex to be far more incredibly comfortable and more dust mite/mold resistant.</p>