New research by retailer AHF has identified a gap in the amount of time the British public keep their furniture, compared to the lifespan recommended by watchdog guidelines.

Items of furniture are replaced at a rate of an average of 3.2 years less than stated by consumer advice, researchers found when quizzing 1000 Brits on their sofas, bedframes, mattresses and dining tables.

According to AHF, the lifespan of a bed frame, based on manufacturer advice and consumer advice columns, is 10 years – whereas its findings show that these items are actually replaced every 7.19 years. Differences in recommended lifespans were also recorded for dining tables (7.54 years), mattresses (1.08 years) and sofas (1.38 years).

The research - which took lifespan averages from advice offered by consumer sites and industry experts such as GoCompare, MrAppliance and The Sleep Council – also showed that furniture and appliances lasts six months less in flats as opposed to houses, likely due to the wear and tear caused by a higher turnover of residents.

The gap between recommended lifespan and actual turnover proved far higher for appliances – televisions in particular recorded a 14.26-year difference between the guideline of 20 years and the actual turnover of 5.74 years.

Jonathan Gregory, ecommerce manager at AHF, says: “It is clear that the guidelines given by the experts have not taken into account the everyday effect that busy homes, with children and pets, can have on our items, and with research stating that Brits spent nearly £14b on new furniture in 2014, it’s important that we ensure no money is lost by having to replace items sooner than expected."