Buying new furniture and appliances is a huge investment. We want to make sure your new purchase will fit inside your home. Our delivery team can attest to the many unhappy customers who are disappointed because their new couch, mattress, refrigerator or table doesn’t fit in the desired room, or sometimes even through the door.
These three easy steps will help you measure – and fit – your exciting new investment in the desired space.
Measure before you shop
Always shop with three measurements in hand: Width, height and depth. Compare these measurements with the item in store.
Width (measurement A): Measure width from the outside edge of the space to the other, along the widest area where the furniture or appliance will go. For instance, the sofa you want may have an oversized padded arm and you’ll want to make sure there’s room for the extra fabric. Or the refrigerator you want may have wide hinges that take up an extra half-inch of space.
These measurements sometimes exceed the width measurement provided by the manufacturer, so it’s important you measure the space and then the item itself to determine an accurate width.
Height (measurement B): Measure height from the floor up. You may not need this measurement for furniture unless your ceilings or light fixtures are low or if you’re trying to fit the piece below a window or wall opening. For appliances, this is critical as the item is usually fitting in predetermined cabinet spaces. If you have a cupboard with trim overhang, or a stove area with a large vent fan above it, measure up to the point that is closest to the ground.
Depth (measurement C): This is the trickiest measurement because how far an item extends out into a room can be deceptive. Manufacturer measurements usually don’t account for the item’s function, such as door openings or reclining footrests.
Begin measuring from the back of the space where you will put the item, and stop when you’re happy with how far it extends. How far can the item extend before it will be in your way or bump into something else? Can you fully open doors around or across from the item?
There are three easy steps for measuring depth:
- First, measure the depth of your space (using the manufacturer’s dimensions) to ensure the area is deep enough to hold the item. Start with where the back of the item will be placed, and lay a piece of masking tape on the floor to mark where the front of the item will be (measurement C).
- Measure from the masking tape line to the wall/cupboards/furniture directly around. Make sure there is enough room for you to open any doors, drawers or reclining features (measurement D)
- Compare measurement D with the piece of your item that will open (measurement E). If it’s a door, footrest, or other feature, you’ll want to fully extend it before taking this measurement.
More Basic Measurement Tips
- Place a tape measure or mark the measurement area with masking tape along the floor or wall to ensure you get a level, accurate measurement.
- Measure the narrowest point of each dimension. Take into account door handles, cupboard knobs and layouts you cannot change or remove.
- Do not round up your measurements. While rounding down may ensure your products will get down your hallway and into your space, recording at least two decimal points when marking measurements will give you the most accurate idea of whether things will fit.
- Some areas may be wide open and not require measurements. But if there is anything that could get in the way of delivery or installation (cupboards, walls, etc.), then measure those areas as well.
- Diagonal measurements are also useful when considering the area around where your new furniture will sit. This will help you visualize how your new item will fit in the room.
Plan your space
When shopping for furniture, it’s important to consider the entire room. There are a few key things to think about.
Empty space: Account for the functionality of the whole room when you look at your space. Even if a piece of furniture fits in your home, it may not be functional. Can people sit comfortably at the kitchen table while others move around? Is there room to walk between your couch and loveseat? Will you be able to walk around the coffee table? Room entrances, light fixtures, windows and window hangings, fireplaces and any other architectural features all play a factor in how your furniture will fit, and look, in your space.
In your kitchen, the key thing to remember is cabinetry and accessibility. More often than not you will be replacing an existing appliance so you will know how best to move around your kitchen. If an oven or dishwasher door can’t fully open without hitting a wall or cabinet, will it be useful? Air clearance is also important as refrigerators and freezers need approximately 1-inch of space around for air flow. Hinges, coils, vents and power outlets are other considerations.
Packages and coordinating pieces: If you are buying pieces separately, or pieces to match an existing item, measure all items to be sure they fit together within the space.
Moving pieces: Consider the space requirements for furniture and appliances with moving pieces. Will the recliner’s footrest have space to swing out? Can the doors to your hutch open fully? Can the appliance door fully open without impeding or hitting anything else? These features will also affect the space you have to move around.
The Door-to-Room Dance
When shopping for new furniture or appliances, you are likely replacing old pieces. This works to your advantage because you already know the limitations of your room. Still, don’t forget the journey your new purchase will take into your home. Ask yourself:
- How wide is the entryway to the room you’re placing the item? The entryway to your home where the item is coming in?
- If your doorway is not wide enough, do you have the option to take your new purchase apart and put it back together?
- Are there sharp turns, staircases or narrow hallways you have to maneuver through? Will the item fit in those spaces?
The answers to those questions can affect the delivery and placement of your item. If you arrange for delivery, mention any limitations to the salesperson before the delivery team arrives to ensure the item can be safely and efficiently placed in your home. Read more tips from our delivery experts on making your experience a smooth and effortless one.
You’re now ready to go shopping and successfully fit your perfect new furniture piece into your home. Let’s get started!