The Difference Between Living Room and Sitting Room

The Difference Between Living Room and Sitting Room

March 29, 2023 0 By Brett Simons

Living rooms and sitting rooms often get confused for one another, but they’re distinct. Understanding these distinctions can make for a smoother home renovation project.

The living room is usually the largest room in a home, located either at the front or center. Here, family members come together for socializing and relaxation.


A living room typically has more square footage than the average sitting room, as it typically houses furniture sets, coffee tables and entertainment systems.

It also serves as a multi-purpose area, making the most out of common areas in the home and accommodating guests and family members.

Comparatively, a sitting room is typically smaller and designed for privacy when hosting guests or meetings. This ensures that people can communicate without being seen by the rest of the household, making it the perfect setting for such gatherings.

Typically, a sitting room will feature comfortable chairs and a small table for reading or relaxing. A sofa or love seat adds to the coziness, while adding chaise lounges can create an even cozier ambiance.


A living room is commonly used to entertain guests and create an inviting first impression. It tends to be larger than a sitting room and designed with more formality in mind.

A sitting room is a place for families to unwind, chat and take naps. It typically offers more intimacy than the family room and can be decorated according to the homeowner’s taste.

Sitting rooms tend not to include TVs, computers or entertainment centers and instead serve as casual recreation spaces for the whole family.

A sitting room should provide seating for all guests, except in cases where standing room is allowed. Large framed couches, sofas and chairs work best in this space as do coffee, end and accent tables which provide space for drink holders as well as family photos.


Though they may appear similar, living rooms and sitting rooms are actually very distinct in design and purpose.

Living rooms often feature more opulent couches that set an aesthetic tone and convey luxury or formality. Furthermore, many feature fireplaces to provide warmth and a sense of coziness.

Sitting rooms, on the other hand, offer more seclusion and can serve as a tranquil oasis for guests to unwind and savor a cup of coffee or tea in peace.

When working with a builder or designing your own home, understanding the distinctions between these spaces will help you get the best results.

Though you can adjust the use of these rooms over time, they usually have a specific place within the home and should be designed with specific purposes in mind. Understanding the distinctions between living room and sitting room will help you create an area that works perfectly for all members of your family.


A living room is the main gathering spot in a home for guests and family members. It also serves as an area for entertainment and relaxation, such as watching TV or reading a book.

Interior designer Corrine Mathern believes that a spacious, open room should be the focal point of any home. To achieve this look and feel, she suggests selecting furniture with a clean, modern aesthetic.

She suggests using a neutral color palette to create an inviting space that’s pleasing on the eye. Then, add accent pieces for individuality.

“Find a sofa that’s not too large or bulky, and opt for lighter fabrics to keep it from feeling heavy,” advises Shelton. Additionally, using a rug as additional padding can soften the surface.

Ideal, the living room should be situated near the front door so guests are the first to see when entering your home. This ensures they won’t have to travel through less organized or cluttered areas and helps prevent them from slipping into other parts of the house.