Londoners are breaking up with partners over interior design


New research today reveals that more than half of couples in London argue (58%) with their partner about the interior design and renovation of their home because they each have different tastes. Whilst disputes about furnishings, entertainment areas, tv units and other household choices are commonplace, this research suggests that the impact of these disagreements is far more widespread than many would likely think.

The findings from Ideal Home Show, who conducted the study, uncovers that one in three Londoners and their current partner agree on everything except interior design and home renovation, and 35 per cent say they thought they knew their partner inside out until they started designing a home together. More than one in seven (15%) have even broken up with their (now ex) partner over a home renovation row.

Interestingly, disagreements about paint colour cause the highest proportion of disagreements (39%),with wallpaper and lighting (32% each), and flooring (25%) falling closely behind.

There’s no end in sight for some with more than a third (34%) stating they will never be able to see eye to eye on interior design or home renovation with their partner. Partly because almost half (49%) of confident Londoners think their taste in interior design is superior to their partner’s taste and style.

And it seems we are willing to lie to our partners. More than four in ten (41%) couples have lied to their partner and said they like their design tastes, when in fact they don’t to appease them. And almost one in five (19%) have pretended they like a homeware item their partner has bought just to keep the peace.

And after the arguments have subsided, almost a third (32%) of couples have ended up compromising by ‘owning rooms’ with one person designing one room and their partner designing another. Sadly, 31 per cent say their home is still not completed as they still can’t agree.

Justin Levett at Ideal Home Show said “We were sad to see that 31 per cent said that when they walk into their home it doesn’t feel like their own due to their partner’s interiors taste. It really doesn’t have to be that way!”.


Simone Gordon of Owl Designs, the interior designers of this year’s Evolving Show Home added “One of our top tips for couples is to both write out separate lists of the things you want,  need  and  love as well any major dislikes – think broad terms like crushed velvet, the colour pink and bedside tables – and then compare your answers. Any real dislikes should be discarded, loves should be considered and needs may well crossover. Once you have a base of the large items, it should be easier to add the smaller things you both like. 

“In a similar way, before you get started you can both go away and grab images of the things you like, put them out on the table and see which ones you both like – you’ll be surprised to see that there will be some common ground.”

Property expert Kunle Barker said: “Renovating a home together is a really exciting and fun time for couples. But it’s not uncommon to see that both people have different ideas about what they want to do. I’m going to be on hand at the show on April 5th and 6th to give couples visiting the show tips and tricks and help them come up with compromises which work for both, in the instances that they just can’t agree.” 

Kunle’s DIY Expert sessions are free and can be booked in advance at to secure a place. The Ideal Home Show, sponsored by Zoopla, returns to Olympia London from Friday 22nd March to Sunday 7th April 2019.