How to Make a Small Living Room Appear Larger on a Budget

A collage of photos showing a living room with white furniture and a fireplace, designed to make the space appear larger.

Redecorating small rooms can help them appear larger if certain design rules are followed. Here are our top tips for making a small living room appear larger on a budget.

A spacious living room with chairs and a view of a city.

Add extra floor space with legs

Add extra floor space to your living room by opting for furniture with legs. For example, choose couches with wooden legs that lifts the seating off the ground instead of more bulky sofas that go right to the floor. This will help to make the room appear larger without having to opt for smaller lounge chairs.

A white chair beside a wooden table makes the living room appear larger.

Leave extra space between couches

Leave extra space between your couches and increase the floor space by not having a coffee table. Coffee tables dramatically reduce the amount of floor space you have in your room and should really only be used if you have a larger living room. Instead of a coffee table, opt for side tables next to couches for your lamps that double as a place to sit your tea of coffee. You can add extra coffee and book space by using well placed bookshelves or hall tables at the back of your lounge chairs.

Choose large area rugs

A spacious living room with a fireplace and a rug.

Instead of having a smaller rug or carpet positioned between couches and tables, choose large area rugs that cover the entire space and have to be placed slightly underneath couch legs to fit. Don’t go so huge that they cover the entire area plus go straight behind your couches, but just large enough to slip under the first couple of legs of all couches in the room. This helps to make the floor space appear much larger.

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Add mirrors

A round mirror placed strategically in the living room to make it appear larger.

This is an oldie but a goodie because it always works to help smaller rooms appear larger. Add mirrors to the room as a focal point. Even one mirror will help to dramatically alter the appearance of the room and help make the space appear larger.

Paint everything white

A room with a white door and wooden floor.

Another good tip is to paint everything white. Paint the walls, cornices and ceiling the one shade of white paint. Not only will this help to reduce the appearance of any faults in your walls if you’re in an older home but it will also help to make the room seem larger and the ceiling higher.

Choose neutral shades

A black and white couch making the living room appear larger.

Opt for neutral shades throughout smaller rooms. Choose neutral, non-patterned curtains or window dressings and select a plain carpet or area rug. All of the larger items in the room, including furniture should either be white or plain and neutral coloured to make the space appear larger. Of course you will want to add some pops of colour. Do this with smaller homewares and buy used to keep the cost down.

Add light

Three white vases on a window sill make the living room appear larger.

If the space doesn’t already have a lot of natural light, you’ll want to create some. Opt for sheer curtains so that you can have the space airy and bright while maintaining privacy. Add more lighting with table lamps and floor lamps to help lift up the space.

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