Tips for Moving and Rearranging Furniture

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Moving into a new home is the perfect time to experiment with decorating, furniture placement and exploring all your options for the best use of the new space. There’s nothing like a blank canvas to inspire creative solutions. While you may be buying new pieces and accessories to complete the look, your first decision will be how to arrange the furniture you moved from the previous home. Plan ahead by drawing diagrams or floor plans of the rooms that incorporate your furniture and this task will be much easier.

Measure Twice, Move It Once

As you’re planning your design, be sure to take some accurate measurements of the room and your furniture. This will let you place pieces proportionately in the space. You might think your huge sectional will look great in a specific corner of the living room, but it has to fit and not look out of scale. Be aware of the flow you’d like in the room and create pathways that make sense. Taking time in the early stages of the process will also give you measurements to take with you when shopping for new furniture and décor.

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Visualization Tools and Apps

To further develop your layout, there are handy online visualization and room-design tools that make the job of planning and perfecting your design a snap. Similar to virtual painting tools that allow you to visualize your rooms in different paint colors, these tools give you a preview of how the room will look with your furniture in various positions. There are also some cool phone and tablet apps available for download. In addition to allowing you to envision your options, you won’t injure your back moving heavy furniture around to find its best spot.

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Here are more room-design selections:

  • Floor Planner: This online tool allows you to do your designs in 2-D or 3-D.
  • Arrange-a-Room: A bit more low-tech, this tool on Better Homes & Garden’s website still allows you to visualize how your room will look.
  • Mark on Call: An iPhone app that is useful for determining how a particular piece of furniture or design option will look in your home.

Get Moving

After you’ve done the planning and visualization, it’s time for the actual placement of your furniture. It might sound exhausting just thinking about moving those hefty pieces, but luckily there are helpful tools to do the heavy lifting with an assist. You may have finished the prep part of this process solo, but to do the moving, you’ll need to enlist some help. The following concepts and products are often borrowed from those used by professional movers, but are designed for consumers to easily use.

Furniture Pads

Also called sliders, furniture pads are small square pads, usually made of rubber or plastic. It seems impossible from a physics perspective, but these little tools allow you to move very heavy and bulky furniture relatively simply. You place a slider under each corner or leg of the item and can then glide it over the flooring. These work on most floor surfaces—hardwoods, carpet and linoleum—and protect your flooring from scratches and tears. You can find brands like EZMoves in home accessory stores or online, and most come with an instructional video.

Lifting Straps and Hand Trucks

Lifting straps or slings also allow you to lift and move objects much heavier than your body weight. Using physics and leverage, the straps help prevent injury from strained muscles by distributing the weight between you and a partner. These tools come in a shoulder strap or elbow/forearm style. It’s important to thoroughly read the instructions before using the lifting straps so that you are doing it correctly.

Hand trucks and dollies let you get under an object to lift it for moving. Used for deliveries and in warehouses, homeowners will find this tool helpful in many situations besides moving furniture. It’s best to have a partner when using these tools, especially if the item you’re moving is very heavy.

Enjoy Your New Space

Taking the steps above—measuring, planning, visualizing and lastly moving your furniture and possessions into place will guarantee an amazing end result. You may have started planning what to add to complete your home’s new look, but don’t be in a rush to go out and purchase new items for your home yet. Give yourself and your family an adjustment period before shopping. You may find you love your old stuff even more in its new digs. Take a moment to congratulate yourself on a job completed and well done. Now, settle in and enjoy!

This article was written by Nancy LaFever for, an online resource for moving information, products and coupons.

Last Updated: December 11, 2012
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