Size Matters When Shopping for Furniture


If you’re not a designer, it can be hard to anticipate how new furniture will function in your living space. What you expect to fit comfortably might make a space feel crowded, and pieces you assume will be just right could make your room feel bare.

So whether you’re redecorating or moving into a new home, keep some numbers and measurements handy. They’ll help you plan, shop, and configure like a pro.


According to home remodeling resource, a couch that measures about 72 inches (183 cm) in length works well for a living room in a modest-sized apartment or house. Got more room to work with? Go for a comfy, overstuffed 96-inch (244 cm) option.


If you’re working with a small space, such as in a condo or a home office, a love seat – typically about 5 feet (152 cm) long and between 38 and 40 inches (97–102 cm) deep – might be a better option.


When it comes to placing tables, space between tables and seating is important. Houzz recommends setting tables between 18 and 20 inches (46–51 cm) from chairs and couches to make it easy to reach items. As for size, tables in modest spaces should be at least 42 inches (107 cm) in length or radius to provide maximum surface area. In larger spaces, that can go up to between 66 and 72 inches (168–183 cm).

Need a hand? Before you hire professional help, try using an app on your smartphone or tablet. Home Design 3D, Magic Plan, and Floorplans are all good options for iOS; Android users can try Inard Floor Plan, Master-Design Furnish, and Floor Plan Creator.

These apps can help you create a digital floor plan for experimenting with furniture sizes and layout before you decide on what pieces you need to keep, toss or buy.