Measuring up your new home

Written by Douglas Ross in Moving House on April 26, 2017

Measuring up your new home

One of the more enjoyable aspects of moving house is figuring out what will go where. However, knowing whether that sofa will work in that corner all relies on you measuring your home and playing around with ideas. If you are moving with kids in tow, this can be one activity that they can be involved with and it is up to you whether you do it the old fashioned way by creating a floorplan on graph paper, or the 21st century way of doing it online or on your phone/tablet.

Before putting pen to paper

Firstly, you should have had access to your new property’s floorplan long before you even purchased it. Most online listings and open homes will provide you with a floorplan. With this in hand, you can easily draw up your own floor plan on graph paper from which to play around with furniture ideas.

Walk around your new home during inspections, or if you can, before moving day. Get an idea of how the light works in each room and whether this will have an effect on how you will want to use each room. If the afternoon light is particularly pleasing in one room and you know that you will be working from home a lot, that room, even if it is larger than others, may work better as an office than a bedroom.

Once you have an idea of how you will use your new home’s space, it is time to measure your home to confirm it matches the measurements in the floorplan given to you by the real estate agent.

Measuring your home on paper

With graph paper, a pencil and a ruler in hand start to draw out your floorplan on the paper. Assign one square on the graph paper with a particular length, such as 10 cm. If the length of the living room in reality measures 4.5 metres, then you will need 45 individual squares on your graph paper to represent that wall. If this requires too much space on the paper, increase the scale so that one square represents 20 cm.

Once you have your floorplan sketched out (remember that you can use the floorplan provided to you as a guide), you can then do the same for your major pieces of furniture. Measure your beds, couches, tables and all other large furniture pieces and scale them to the same measurement you used for your sketch.

This is when the kids can become involved. Let them colour in the different furniture pieces and talk with them about how to arrange the home. Of course, if their suggestions are mad, just nod politely before sending them off to bed. If they argue that it’s only 1pm, tell them not to talk back.

Measuring your home online

If you don’t particularly fancy getting out the ruler and graph paper, and who can blame you, then there are some great digital tools for creating a floor plan.

One of the best online tools for this is Homestyler, which allows you to easily drag and drop rooms, adjust them to suit your measurements and then print this out or save it to your computer. While you can then add furniture and amend their measurements to suit your own furniture, you cannot change the measurement type (from inches) nor enter precise measurements. It is best to print your floorplan out and use your own scaled-down furniture drawings to play with.

If you are on your tablet or phone, Floor Plan Creator is one of your best options for Android users, while MagicPlan is just one of a number of options of iOS users.