The Ultimate Guide to Buying Sectional Sofas for your Home

A modern sofa in a furnished house.

If you have a large family or regularly host a lot of people, the sectional sofa is for you. An alternative to the standard three-seat sofa, the sectional can accommodate a lot more people. Even if you don’t need the sectional for more people and you just like to lounge and stretch out, you can’t do better.

In the past, options for sectionals were limited. They were cumbersome and poorly designed, and they didn’t seem to fit well anywhere but in a gymnasium. Today’s sectionals have superior design and are much more streamlined than the monsters of the past. Many more stylistic options are available, such as velvet, leather, linen, and every color under the sun. Additionally, the modern sectional is far more versatile than it appears. It can fit in a small study just as well as it can in spacious basement or den. We have compiled the ultimate guide to buying sectional sofas for your home so that you can be an informed consumer and buy something you’ll love for a long time.

Why You Need a Sectional Sofa

The first reason why most people want sectional sofas is that they accommodate more people. Sectionals offer a lot more seating for a lot more people than conventional sofas do—in optimal comfort—and that’s the primary goal. They’re perfect for just lounging and putting your feet up. With a new sectional, you can have friends over to watch the big game or your favorite series.

Furthermore, sectionals are very versatile pieces of furniture that can fit in many spaces. Their purpose isn’t merely to eat up space in large rooms. They come in different-size pieces, making them capable of fitting in odd-shaped rooms. Utilizing the space available—as well as maximizing the space in the room—is key. Sectionals are also great at breaking up open floor plans. The open floor plan has been the preferred style in new homes for many years now, and the sectional is great at creating “rooms” within the open space. They can break up an open floor plan and define spaces in a way that standard sofas cannot.

Know the Different Designs

Like everything else in America, there are many different options for sectional sofas. So many, in fact, that knowing where to begin can be difficult. Still, having all those options means the odds are great that, once you wade through all the options, you’ll be able to find what you want. Becoming familiar with some of these basic designs will guide your decision-making process.


Not to be confused with the U-shape, the curved sectional has a sweeping, curved elegance to it. It’s a decorative piece as well as a functional one. However, this is not a good option for confined spaces. The shape of the sofa prevents it from sitting flush against any wall. You’ll need a large room and extra space to accommodate the curved shape.


The close cousin of the curved sofa is the U-shaped sofa, and it’s one of the more popular styles. The U-shape is perfect for filling a large space such as a home theater or basement. It will give you the maximum number of seats for your money. With arms that extend out and face each other, the shape almost forces conversation and togetherness.


Just like it sounds, L-shape sofas looks like two traditional sofas stuck together to make a right angle. They’re great for corner spaces and for defining a room or boundary. It’s one of the most versatile of the sectionals, and it can have different configurations. The most common configuration is the three-cushion sofa connected to a two-cushion sofa.


The chaise sectional comes with a gigantic chaise lounger for feet. Think of a regular sofa with an extended ottoman on one side. It’s the simple cousin of the L-shape, but it can go places the L cannot. The chaise can go just about anywhere a conventional sofa can, and it’s great for smaller spaces.


The modular sectional is the next generation of sectional sofa. If the curved sofa is a vintage Rolls Royce, then the modular is a Tesla. Most sectionals come in a few pieces that are designed to fit together in a specific way. Not true with the modular—it comes in as many as five pieces and can fit in any way you need it to. Modular sofas are designed for arranging in any way you see fit. Their mobility is their strength—you can use one sofa as five different pieces of furniture in one room, if that’s what you want.


The classic sleeper sofa is an option that may come with an already-useful sectional. If you need space for overnight guests, then the sleeper is a good option. The sleeper technology is improving, too; they’re no longer only slightly better than sleeping on the floor. Sleeper sofas usually come with the chaise-style sectionals.

Things to Consider Before Buying

Before buying anything, make sure you cover a few things that will help you narrow down your search for a sectional sofa. Decide what kind of material you want the couch to be made from. Do you want leather or fabric? Measure the room for which the sofa is destined to make sure it will fit. Also measure the doorways to ensure it will make it into the house. There’s no point in buying something that you can’t get in the house.

If you’re buying an L-shaped sectional, the most important to thing to consider is whether you need it to face left or right. The distinction between the two is simple, but it’s still easy to confuse them. Imagine standing in front of your sofa—that’s how you choose the orientation. If you want the sectional to extend out at the right side, choose a right-facing sofa. If you want it to extend to the left, choose a left-facing sofa.

Sofas & Sectionals is your home for elegant, quality Natuzzi leather furniture—among many other sectional sofas, couches, and reclining sofas in a wide array of colors and fabrics.

The Ultimate Guide to Buying Sectional Sofas for your Home Infographic

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