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How To Pick The Right Couch (In 7 Steps)

Which room in your house do you use the most? Probably your living room, right? And which item do you use the most in your living room? Your couch, of course!


You watch TV on it, have friends and family over on it, take naps on it, read your books on it, have your morning coffee on it, and the list goes on.


A couch is a significant investment you don't want to regret buying. Follow these seven designer tips and easily pick the right couch to fit your lifestyle.

Neutral couch with blanket under mirror, coffee table with decorations

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How To Pick The Right Couch (In 7 Steps)

 

1. What's Your Lifestyle?

  • How many people will use the couch? Should you buy a big or small couch?

  • How old are the people that'll use the couch?

Should it be higher so older people can stand up easily or lower so kids can get on easily?

  • Do you have pets or kids? This will make a difference in the type of fabric you choose.

  • What's the primary purpose of the couch? Sitting? Sleeping?

  • Where will the couch go? In your living room, in your bedroom, on the balcony?

  • Will the couch stay in one place or be moved around often?

Should it be on wheels, the frame made of a lighter material, or can it be heavy?

  • What's your budget? Consider these couches under $500 if you're on a tight budget but still want a quality product.

Ask yourself these questions, and you'll quickly find a basic overview of the couch you should buy.

 

2. Couch Orientation

  • Where in the space will your couch go? In the middle of the room? Against a wall?

  • Will the back of the couch be exposed?

  • If you're buying a sectional sofa, which side will the corner piece go?

  • Would you like a couch that can be arranged in several different ways?

Knowing these details will save you time by helping to eliminate any options that don't fit your requirements.

 

3. Measure Up

What's the saying? Measure twice, buy once. Ain't that the truth!

Why do you need measurements to buy a couch? Well, what's the biggest size couch that'll fit in your space? This includes length, height, and width.

  • Will it fit through your doorway? Hallway? Be able to be navigated through tight corners?

  • Once in your space, will you be able to fit anything else in?

  • Will you be able to move around the couch with ease?

Tip: Cut the shape and size of your couch from newspapers and place it on the floor in your room. This allows you to easily check if it fits, what you can place around it, and if the other furniture in your room can still be used without obstruction.

 

4. Which Fabric is Best?

The type of fabric/ upholstery that you choose will have a massive impact on your day-to-day life.

  • If you have pets or kids, you'd want a fabric that's easy to clean.

  • Removable couch covers that you can throw in the wash will give you much more peace of mind than stressing over removing a stain from a permanent cover.

  • If your couch gets a lot of direct sunlight, choosing a synthetic fabric that will fade less is the better choice over natural materials.

 

5. Choose the Right Color

The biggest thing to consider when choosing a color is the color palette you already have in your space or one you're working towards.

  • What are the style and colors of the current furniture in your living room?

  • Should your couch be a statement piece or blend in?

  • Would you want a bright color, pattern, or neutral?

Since your couch will probably be one of the biggest furniture pieces in your living room, choosing a color you love and won't get tired of is essential.


Tip: It's easier and cheaper to buy new, smaller, colorful statement pieces than to replace a whole couch when you want a change.

For example, buy a neutral-colored couch and jazz it up with colorful accessories and different textures.

 

6. Invest In a Good Frame

Be prepared to spend some money on a good frame. You'll use your couch daily for hours; you want a quality product that will stand the test of time. Opt for manufacturers who offer a 10+ year guarantee on the frame.


Tip: The arm style of the couch often gets overlooked. Have you ever tried to get comfortable on a couch where the arm style is too high or too low? It's a very disappointing experience.


Make sure you test out the arms of the couch you like and ensure they are sturdy, firm, and the right height for your comfort.

 

7. Test the Seat Cushions

  • Do you want a "sink-in" feeling or a firm, structured seating experience?

  • Do you mind regularly plumping the cushions back into shape, or would you want to invest in memory foam-type cushions?

  • How much support must the back cushions provide?

These are all things you need to think about. Then, sit on as many couches as you want to figure out which one fits your needs best.


Tip: Take into account the depth of the couch. How much should your legs be on the couch vs. hanging off the couch?

 

The Bottom Line

A couch is a significant investment, and buying one without considering these 7 points will cost you more than you should be willing to part with. So consider these tips and pick a day to go couch hopping, sitting, and shopping. Good luck, and I hope you find your dream couch!

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