Upon receiving the keys to your beautiful new LifeStyle home, it’s time place your furniture and décor. Chances are, you’ve thought through where your couches and beds will go, but have you truly defined your furniture style or conceptualized the flow of your pieces? How do you go about the furniture selection and move-in process to ensure it goes smoothly and easy?

Here are five helpful tips to keep it simple.

  1. Plan Your Space. Before doing any work, spend quality time in the rooms. Walk them and get the feel of them to learn how each room functions best. Where are the best views? Which direction feels the most inviting? Where are the pathways? Will it have a TV? Will you host company here? Picture interacting in each room and recognize areas that feel most like home to you. Note any important needs that you have for each room so your final furniture layout functions as you hoped.
  2. Consider Sizing and Scale. Ensuring that your furniture pieces are the correct sizes is key. Nothing can take the allure of your new home away faster than an ill-sized couch or a bed frame that blocks natural light. For some people, it’s best to begin with the blueprints and determine furniture arrangements from a dollhouse view. If you’ve built a LifeStyle plan, we encourage you to take advantage of our online customization tools that allows you to view your floorplan online and drag and drop a multitude of furniture pieces into it. If you’ve opted for a LifeStyle custom home, explore various websites like Roomstyler.com to help you size furniture appropriately. If you prefer to do your furniture plan inside your finished home, but have trouble envisioning where furniture should go, place flat pieces of cardboard, newspaper, or blue painter’s tape in the room as templates. You can move them easily and leave them for a day or two to see if everything still feels right. Try to maintain 3 feet for pass-throughs and add 2 feet on each side of a dining table to account for chairs moving in and out.
  3. Define Your Style. Now the fun begins! This is your time to compile your favorite looks and styles. To help you on this journey, there are a wide range of design magazines that cover styles you can cut out and use to build a collage book. Sites like Houzz.com or Pinterest.com are great inspiration sources that allow you to search by style and save pictures for easy reference. Pinterest remembers designs you saved and provides more ideas automatically on your home page. When defining your style, combine colors to see how they work together. A major consideration is your wall colors—they are the backdrop where everything lives. Decide on the largest furniture items first since they make the largest impact, keeping in mind they should complement the walls. You can determine color matches using a color wheel which is purchasable online or at most art-supply stores.
  4. Set a Budget. This is your friendly reality check. Budget each piece you’ll want to include in a space. In addition to furniture, this may include draperies, area rugs, art, lighting, household appliances, greenery, artwork, books, coasters, candles, and more. You can estimate pricing by researching online. Take the time to list out every detail. Once you have estimated budgets, you’ll know where to spend.
  5. Shop! Find furniture sources locally and online that fit your budget. Consider the benefits of each, visiting stores and design districts and asking friends for feedback. Keep your draft and collage book with you so you can find furniture that fits appropriately and matches your color scheme. Find out who stocks locally, who requires shipping, and who sells items off the floor if timing is tight. And be sure to ask if any sales will happen soon.

By following these simple steps, you will have a head start in ensuring a smooth and hassle-free furniture-planning process, giving you more time to enjoy the experience of creating a home that you love.