September 4, 2024 | By Elie Mansdorf

There are several reasons to calculate the square footage in a room, apartment, or house. You might want to make sure you have enough living space for your family, or you may want to check whether your bedroom is big enough for the furniture set you plan to buy. In any situation, being able to accurately calculate your square footage is essential.

Before you begin, make sure you assemble the tools for measuring the square footage. While some devices and apps can help you take measurements, you don’t need state-of-the-art gadgets. As long as you have a pencil, writing pad, and tape measure, you’re ready to get started.

In addition, set aside a chart that will show you the proper square footage formula and conversions used during this process. The following chart should prepare you for taking and precisely converting your measurements.

- Length x width/height = gross square footage
- 12 inches = 1 foot
- 144 square inches = 1 square foot
- 3 feet = 1 yard
- 1 square yard = 9 square feet
- 3.28084 feet = 1 meter
- 10.7639 square feet = 1 square meter

While some of these calculations convert meters to the English or American system of measurement, you will use the other conversions in changing inches to feet. This process will help you learn how to measure a room with less confusion.

A room or living space with a simple square or rectangular shape is the easiest to measure. Learning how to measure a room involves following the basic square footage formula.

Since determining the square feet is an essential part of evaluating coliving spaces, make sure you have an accurate tape measure that’s easy to read. The long side of a room is the length, while the shorter side is the width. Use the tape measure to calculate the length of the room’s longest side. Measure the shorter wall to get the width of the room.

This is where knowing how to measure a room becomes useful. Imagine you have a room with a length of 35 feet and a width of 20 feet. Multiply 35 by 20 to get a total square footage of 700 feet. When a contractor, real estate agent, or another professional asks you about the area size of a room, you will tell them it’s a 700-square-foot space.

What should you do if the room has an irregularly shaped space? Your calculations will be a little more complex in this situation.

Imagine the irregular space measures a length of 7 feet and a width of 3 feet. Calculate the square footage of this space as 21 square feet. Adding this part of the room to the original 700 square foot measurement gives you a total square footage of 721 for the entire area.

When looking at NYC apartment listings online, the site may provide the square footage for you. If you own a home or have lived in your apartment for years, you may not have access to these resources. Instead, you’ll measure your living space firsthand.

An easier and less accurate method is to measure the length of each exterior wall of the structure. This method is less precise because it doesn’t account for the thickness of the walls, the presence of cabinetry, or other variations. However, you can use a digital square footage calculator to determine how the unit’s layout divides the gross square footage.

When adhering to ANSI standards, you’ll use a computer-generated blueprint of the home. This blueprint makes it easier to break the interior surface area into separate living spaces. A square footage calculator comes in handy when calculating hallways, staircases, and other spaces. Add the square footage for each space to get the home’s full square footage.

You can get more accurate measurements by measuring each room individually. Follow the process for getting the square footage of a room and use that formula for every room, hallway, basement, and attic. After measuring each of these spaces and calculating their square footage, add those sums together. This sum is the total square footage of your apartment or house.

How big is my bedroom? This is a common question to ask before buying a new bedroom furniture set. You’ll want to make sure you have enough space for everything without leaving the room crowded or uncomfortable. Even if you know how to calculate square footage in apartment or house floor plans, this process can be complex.

To fit new furnishings into any room, you may only need the measurement of a single wall. This is also true when hanging shelves or artwork. You can use this simple process to measure for an embedded bookcase or new cabinetry.

Follow the same formula (L x W), but in this case, you’ll measure the height of the wall in place of the width. Imagine the wall is 10 feet long and has a height of 8 feet. This measurement gives you a surface area of 80 square feet.

If the ceiling has an irregular shape, you might not have a perfectly rectangular wall. In that case, separate the wall into multiple rectangular or triangular sections. Measure each section separately and add the square footage for all sections together to get the gross square footage of the wall.

The value of square footage depends on the reason for measuring your living spaces. If you need the measurements to estimate the value of your home, keep in mind that other factors will affect your property’s market value. A swimming pool, balcony, or other special living spaces can add value to your home.

Use this guide to calculate the square footage of any living space or surface. Since you’ll use these measurements in a variety of different situations, you can avoid wasting time by saving these calculations for future use. Even if you need an official assessment, keeping your own records can help you verify accuracy when selling or remodeling your home.