by The Rug Truck November 11, 2019 3 min read

Author: Carly Daniele

Everything You Need to Know Before Placing an Area Rug in Your Living Room

If you’re thinking about getting an area rug for your living room you may be questioning where to place it. With a seemingly infinite amount of possibilities, you may not know where to begin. To help make this process as easy as possible for you, we have compiled a guide to placing an area rug in your living room.

Table of Contents

1. Steps For Placing Your Area Rug

2. Area Rug Illustration

3. The Importance of a Rug Pad

4. Get Your Free Infographic

Steps For Placing Your Area Rug


  • The first step is to decide how you want to arrange your furniture. This is dependent on the focal point of your room. Are you arranging your furniture to face your television, or are you positioning your furniture in a conversational arrangement? Once you have determined the placement of your furniture, use a piece of painter's tape to mark the front, center point of your sofa on the floor. Next, move all of the furniture out of the area if possible. This will help you have the maximum amount of space to place your area rug where you please.
  • Next, open and lay-out your area rug pad* so that the middle edge of the pad is aligned with the painter's tape that you marked. The longer length of the sofa should be parallel to the longer length of the pad. Area rug pads come in pre-cut sizes based on the size of your rug, so as long as you correctly place your pad, all you have to do is center the rug on top.
  • Once your pad is in place, position your rolled area rug at one end of the pad, a couple of inches before where the pad begins. Next, slowly roll the area rug from the center towards the open pad. Once the rug has been opened, you may need to trim excess padding. Make sure you do so with a strong pair of scissors and cut a couple of inches off the pad so it is not observable with your area rug on top of it.
  • If you need to slightly adjust the positioning of the area rug and pad to re-align with the painter's tape, try to recruit one helper for each corner of the rug. Move the rug AND pad together in a subtle up and down motion. This motion will leverage the air you've created under the rug to help move it in the direction you need. The two people on the ends that the rug needs to move towards should be gently pulling, and the two on the other end should simply be guiding the rug into position.
  • Once your rug is in the correct place, it's time to put your room back together! As a rule of thumb, we suggest placing the front feet of all the surrounding furniture pieces on the rug, at least 6 inches in from the edge. If your rug is large enough, you can place all four feet on the rug. Center your coffee table on the couch, and place it 18 inches away from the couch to leave plenty of room to walk in between.
  • Area Rug Illustration

    An illustration of a white couch with two white chairs is shown with an area rug placed under the first feet of the furniture.A white couch is shown with a green and pink area rug surrounding it entirely.

    The Importance of a Rug Pad

    We strongly recommend purchasing a rug pad for many reasons. Rug pads create a protective moisture-resistant, anti-microbial layer between your area rug and your floor. This prevents scratching and discoloration of your area rug. Rug pads also keep the rug in place when vacuuming, prevent permanent wrinkles from forming and provide extra comfort underfoot. If your area rug has creases or residual roll marks from shipping, do not fret. The creases will settle within a few days, but to expedite the process you can reverse roll the area rug, or place a heavy book on the edges.


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