DO make sure the rug you buy for your living room is large enough to get at least the front feet of all your furniture onto the rug, especially in open floor plan homes. It will add warmth, clearly define the space, and make it feel larger.
DO NOT buy a rug that you cannot get at least some part of all your furniture on - and make sure that if you have a coffee table it doesn't obscure the entire rug. A small, un-anchored rug floating in the middle of the room will make a room feel smaller and less cohesive.
DO NOT settle for a rug you don't love - if the rug you love doesn't come in the size you need consider layering. You will be living with your rug everyday - you will never love something you settled for more than the day you bought it.
DO buy a rug in a size that will serve it's functional purpose. If you are buying a rug for your bedroom, make sure the rug covers the floor in all the areas you will be barefoot. i.e.: along the side of the bed, in/infront of the closets. Consider buying several smaller rugs to place in those areas if one large rug is too expensive or cannot cover all those areas.
DON'T leave the floor bare where you most want to have a rug underfoot. Observe how you use a space and measure to determine a rug size that will best cover all your traffic patterns.
DO make sure your rug is big enough to sit down at your dining room table and have plenty of room to pull out your dining room chairs. It is recommended that the rug should be no less than 18" larger than your dining table on all sides. The ideal is to have 24" on all sides to allow for chairs.
DON'T buy a rug that is too small for your dining table - if your rug is too small as you pull the chairs out and push them back in, the friction of the chairs on your floor and on the edge of you rug will cause damage to both the rug and the floor. Making the rug a moot point and costing you more money in the long run.
We highly recommend getting out some painters tape or newspaper to mark out potential rug sizes in the room to get a good visual sense of what will work or won't. Since rugs typically come is standard sizes (i.e.: 5x8, 6x9, 8x10, etc.) it's good to keep those sizes in mind - but also measure your ideal size, there are always some variations on standard sizes out there. It's also helpful to measure your minimums and maximums in either direction to know what your possible ranges for sizes are.
Good luck, have fun, and remember to buy what you love!
For even more helpful info on choosing the right rug size visit our website: https://www.bradfordsruggallery.com/pages/size-guides