The living room is arguably the most important room in your home and it’s often a big selling point for potential buyers. If you’ve been thinking about increasing the value of your property, then a well-designed living room is one of the best places to start.
Renovations don’t have to cost the earth and there’s plenty you can do without knocking down walls or making major, irreversible changes. With this in mind, see below for our top living room design ideas to increase the value of your home, including maximising the space and upgrading the floors.
Make the room feel larger
‘More space’ was top of the list of priorities for UK homeowners in 2021, but what can you do if an extension or loft conversion isn’t possible? Luckily, there are plenty of ways to give the illusion of more space and make your living room feel much larger and more open.
The right colours
Most people know that white walls create the illusion of a larger room, but you don’t have to stick to such a plain colour palette. Any pale colour works just as well, including pale green, yellow, blue or lavender. You don’t have to choose an all-muted colour palette either, bright pops of colour can help draw the eye and create the illusion of more space. Be wary of large items in bright colours however, especially if your living room is particularly small. Stick to accents like cushions, artwork and rugs.
Large pieces of furniture can swamp a smaller room, but too many small pieces can make it feel cramped and cluttered. Choosing the right proportions is key to making the most of your space, so think about each piece of furniture and how it will fit. Low-armed sofas that are raised off the ground are often much better than a large three-seater with overstuffed cushions. Similarly, look for padded chairs with wooden arms over huge armchairs which could dwarf the room. If in doubt, try a virtual interior design service to see how the pieces would look in the room before you make a purchase.
Clear the clutter
A cluttered room will always feel smaller, so sometimes a quick tidy is all you need to make the room feel larger! You don’t have to drastically rid the room of all possessions, but think carefully about which objects you want to display. Children’s toys, books and other objects can be tidied away with smart storage (more on this later) to create a streamlined, open space.
It’s one of the oldest tricks but adding a mirror really does help to open up the space. If possible, place the mirror opposite a window to reflect natural light and greenery from outside. The bigger the mirror, the more space it will create, so don’t be afraid to choose something oversized. If you’re worried about the space feeling cluttered, forgo a frame for a clean, streamlined look.
Use your walls
Make the most of your walls to free up floor space and open up the room. If you don’t have room for up high also draws the eye upwards and gives the illusion of higher ceilings.
Add hardwood floors
Hardwood floors look stunning in a living room and they add a valuable selling point. One recent survey found that installing wooden floors can increase a home’s value by up to 10%, so it’s definitely a worthwhile investment. You may have wooden flooring hiding underneath your carpet or you can install new or reclaimed timber from scratch.
If you can’t afford solid hardwood floors, engineered wood is a great alternative. Engineered flooring features several layers of timber with a solid wood veneer to create a natural look that’s durable and hard wearing. Wooden flooring is great for a high traffic area like the living room as it’s easy to clean and will last for decades with the right maintenance. It’s also highly versatile and looks just as stylish in a modern living room as it does in a vintage or cosy cottage design.
Refresh the paint
Sometimes a lick of paint is all you need to completely revamp your living room decor. Painting is one of the most cost-effective and easy ways to freshen up your space and increase the value of your home. If you’re looking to sell in the near future, stick to neutral colours to avoid putting off any potential buyers. As mentioned above, this doesn’t mean you need to stick to white, you could opt for soft pastels, neutral earth colours or pale shades of grey.
As well as the walls, don’t forget to paint skirting boards, doors and window frames. If they’re particularly dusty or dirty, clean surfaces first using a sugar soap solution to remove grime.
Increase natural light
A living room that’s light, airy and open will be much more appealing to potential buyers, so incorporate as much natural light as possible into your living room design. Keep large pieces of furniture away from windows to avoid blocking sunlight and hang curtain rods as close to the ceiling as possible. This will help to make ceilings feel higher and your windows bigger.
Again, use mirrors to make the most of any natural light in the room and add lamps and wall lighting for when the sun goes down. One overhead bulb is often insufficient to light a room and dark corners can make a room feel cramped and unwelcoming. Use table lamps, floor lamps and wall sconces to light each area and create a warm, welcoming space.
Restore period features
Period features like an original fireplace, wooden floorboards and decorative mouldings are highly appealing and they can increase a property’s value. Period features need to be restored carefully and it’s worth finding out more about the building’s original construction before you start.
Original building plans can reveal features that may have become hidden, such as a fireplace or timber beams. Period features add a unique touch to your living room and you can choose to make them a focal point for the overall style. For example, an original restored fireplace provides a stunning focal point for a vintage-style living room.
However, some period features are seen as undesirable and removing these can increase the value of your home. Polystyrene ceiling tiles, textured walls and ceilings and fake plastic beams often look out of place in a stylish, modern home. Remove any mismatched period details and enhance the features you want to keep instead.
There’s no such thing as too much storage and you can cleverly combine storage features into your living room design. Look for multi-functional furniture, like an ottoman with hidden storage or a floor lamp with built in shelves.
Lack of adequate storage space can actually decrease your home’s value, so any additional storage is a worthwhile investment. If you’re looking for something more permanent, built-in bookshelves are very eye-catching and they provide valuable extra space without cluttering up the room.
Professional interior design services from BoConcept Scotland
Are you looking for professional help with your living room design? Get in touch with the local interior designers at BoConcept Scotland to book an appointment with our interior design service. We’ll work with you every step of the way, from discussing initial ideas and what you want to get out of the space, to design boards, 3D visualisations and delivery and assembly of any new furniture.
Our experienced designers take on projects both large and small, from a full home redesign, to sitting room design or help choosing that perfect table or luxury sofa. If you’re in need of more inspiration, browse our lookbook to see how we’ve styled some of our favourite pieces or view our projects page to take a look at some of our previous work. Ready to make an appointment? Call us directly on 0141 341 4920 (Glasgow), 0131 226 6367 (Edinburgh) or contact us online.