In many cases, the living room is the focal point of a house and the most used space in your home. Having the right setup is crucial to the flow of the house, and good flow creates a warm and homey atmosphere to come home to after a long day at work—or to entice potential buyers during showings.
Here are a few major elements to keep in the forefront of your mind when planning out your living room for your family to enjoy or to trying to stage most effectively for the best sale.
Consider Size and Space
Catering to the size of the living room you’re working with is not only essential to the ambiance of the space, but also logistically imperative. Take the time to carefully plan and measure out your living room before you begin furnishing it; you don’t want to end up paying for a couch that doesn’t fit through the doorframe. Do your best to create a floor plan so you don’t get overly-ambitious at the furniture store and come home with a loveseat you don’t have room for.
Start with the basics when furnishing your living room. If you know you’re definitely going to need or want a couch, a coffee table, and an entertainment center for the television, decide where those will be placed first and then work around them to fill and arrange the rest of your space. It might even be a good idea to put some tape on the ground to section off those areas and help you visualize.
Keep your furniture proportional to the room and to coexisting pieces. Don’t overcrowd a small living room with a giant couch; and don’t leave a large room feeling small and cold with tiny furniture and a ton of empty space. Aim to choose pieces that work together in terms of style and scale—you don’t want a huge recliner, two loveseats, four tiny end tables, and no full couch leaving the room feeling awkward and cluttered.
Determine the Function of the Room
What you plan on using your living room for will dictate how you arrange and style it. Most of us use the living room to relax and lounge; it’s a place to sit back and read a book or be lazy and fall asleep watching a movie—choose furniture to reflect that. Invest in a big, comfy sectional or a luxurious leather reclining chair. Keep the coffee table near the couch for easy access to snacks and the remote.
Some people might designate the living room as a space for entertaining guests and holding special occasions, so a soft and squishy couch might not be the best fit. If that’s the case, opt for furniture that better emphasizes the interior design of the room and sacrifices a bit of comfort for class. This sort of space would be ideal for more fragile, decorative pieces and elegant décor accents.
In a living room being used to unwind and chill out on a day-to-day basis, the goal should be comfort and functionality in choosing furniture. Invest in good quality pieces made of durable and easily cleaned and maintained materials—especially if you have kids. Maybe don’t splurge for the gorgeous antique lamp for your end table if there’s a good chance a football is going to fly through the room and shatter it.
Either way you look at it, your living room should be accessible and equipped with a practical, well-thought out layout that is easy to navigate.
Reflect Your Style
Whether you’re using the living room to indulge in comfort and warmth in your free time, or as a space to impress and entertain the in-laws, it should be infused with a cohesive sense of style that reflects you and your personality. Keep everything coordinated but customized to your personal preferences—or if you’re staging, have enough character to attract and connect with potential buyers but not so much as to make them feel like they’re walking into someone else’s home.
Have fun with the furniture in your living room! If you want it to feel cozy and welcoming, fill it with a warm brown sectional topped with a fuzzy throw blanket and patterned couch pillows. Decorate the walls with art and photos that make you feel happy—that sentiment will translate to others and emanate throughout the room. Make sure your décor complements the style, shape, color and/or pattern of furniture you choose.
Choose a consistent theme to connect pieces and decorations within the space and keep that flow going. Go for a rustic and natural vibe with wooden tables and a rich brown couch, paired with photos of nature or accented with soft greens and bright floral throw pillows. If you want something more traditional, fill the room with opulent furniture, ornately detailed accent pieces, and classy art for the walls.
Whatever you decide to do with your living room, just focus on arranging, furnishing, and styling it in a way that reflects how you want people to feel in it. This gives you the control to determine the emotion your home conveys to you, your family, your guests and—if you’re trying to sell— your potential buyers.
If you need some help preparing your house for the market and staging individual rooms to attract the right buyer and secure the best deal, check out the staging packages we have available on our website. With our convenient and affordable furniture packages, we do all of the hard work for you!