A Guide to Moving House: How to Measure a Room for New Furniture

A Guide to Moving House: How to Measure a Room for New Furniture

Moving into your new home is exciting, but there can be a lot to consider. However, with some thoughtful preparation, you can make sure moving house is a smooth transition. Accurately measuring the rooms in your new home is an important way to prepare for moving. Then, you can decide what's staying, what isn't, and pick out new furniture that harmonises perfectly with your new space.

To prepare for your house move, here is our helpful guide to measuring a room for new furniture.


Why Do Room Measurements Matter?

Accurate room measurements matter when it comes to furnishing your new home. By planning the layout of a room, you can make sure that you are able to make the most of the space, and ensure you can move comfortably around it, as well as keep the proportions of the room just right; with no overcrowding, or too little furniture.

By accurately measuring a room, you can also plan to enhance the space's practicality, because your home needs to be functional as well as beautiful! Maybe you're measuring up your new living room? By identifying the focal point, whether it's family time or enjoying a good film, you can make sure that the space works best for you. For example, you’ll want to make sure you can place a coffee table or side table in the living room, as well as sofas, TV, and other pieces of living room furniture.

You’ll also be able to size up potential storage space. As you begin picturing your belongings in your new home, you will find where a practical and stylish blanket box, useful wooden shelves, or perhaps a little extra storage with a bookcase may be best placed.


Ouseburn Tall Bookcase

What Do I Need to Measure a Room for New Furniture?

When it comes to measuring a room for new furniture, there are some essential tools that you will need to be well-equipped to take accurate measurements. 

You probably already have most of these tools at home, so pulling them together is easy!

Tape Measure

When measuring length, height, and width in a room, a reliable and flexible tape measure is essential. Choose a tape measure with clear markings and a locking mechanism which works wonders for accuracy.

(Handy hint - on a retractable tape measure, the holder has its width in cm or mm marked on it. So you don’t need to bend the tape measure back and move the holder out of the way to fully measure something like a windowsill, or an alcove. Simply add the width of the tape measure holder onto the length displayed on the tape to get the total length.) 

Spirit Level

For accurate horizontal and vertical measurements, a spirit level is your best friend! It's particularly useful when hanging shelves or artwork after furnishing your room, too. 

Pen and Paper

Note down all your measurements and sketches. It will help you visualise your room layout and ensure everything fits well. Consider using graph paper for more precision, especially if you love a good sketch! 

Laser Measure (Optional)

If you want to invest in a high-tech tool, a laser measure can make the process quicker and provide precise measurements. However, a traditional tape measure works just as well for most applications. 

Now that you have your tools ready, let’s move on to the steps of measuring a room for new furniture.

Step-by-Step Guide to Measuring a Room for New Furniture

Follow these steps to measure a room accurately and plan for your new furniture:

1. Start with a Rough Sketch

Begin by sketching a rough outline of the room. You don't need to be an artist; a simple representation with the dimensions will do. Include doors, windows, and any architectural features that might affect furniture placement.

(Tip - Measure the overall room dimensions first. Once you have those, measure specific features like doors and windows from the same starting point, so everything lines up correctly in your sketch.)

2. Measure the Walls

Using your tape measure, measure each wall's length. Start from one corner and extend the tape measure to the opposite corner. Repeat for all walls, noting down the measurements on your sketch. If there are any recesses or alcoves, measure those separately. 

(Tip - Always double-check your measurements for accuracy. It's easy to make a mistake, especially if you're working alone.) 

3. Measure Windows and Doors

Measure the width and height of windows and doors. Include the height from the floor to the window sill or top of the door frame. This information is crucial for choosing the right-sized furniture that won't obstruct windows or doors when opened. 

(Tip - If you're planning to place furniture against a wall with a window or door, consider leaving a few inches of clearance to prevent a cramped look.)

4. Note Room Features and Obstacles

Identify any permanent room features like radiators, built-in cupboards, or fireplaces. Measure their dimensions and mark their locations on your sketch. Also, note any obstacles like the swing of doors. 

5. Measure the Furniture

If you already have furniture you plan to use in the room, measure its dimensions. This step is crucial for ensuring your existing furniture fits well with the new pieces you're considering. 

6. Consider Traffic Flow

Think about how people will move through the room. Ensure there are clear pathways and that furniture placement allows for easy traffic flow. Avoid creating tight spaces or blocking natural walking paths. 

7. Plan Furniture Placement

Now that you have all the measurements, start planning where your furniture will go. Consider the focal point of the room and arrange furniture to enhance that feature. Play around with different arrangements until you find the one that maximises space and looks appealing. 

(Tip - Use a furniture template or cut-outs to try different arrangements on your sketch before moving the actual pieces.)


By following these steps, you'll be well-prepared to furnish your new home with style and functionality. Remember to take your time and enjoy the process of creating a space that reflects your personality and meets your needs.

Happy measuring and happy moving!

Sophie, Interior stylist at Funky Chunky Furniture discussing our wood options

Sophie O'Mahony

Sophie is our in-house interior fashion expert, writing our on-trend blogs and curates our ethical accessory collections.

Sophie works with the furniture designers at Funky Chunky Furniture - she has quite a bit of experience creating rustic interior design sets for photo shoots across all rooms in the home.

About Sophie