5 things people with nice-smelling living rooms never do

Avoid these five common pitfalls for a living room that always smells fresh and fragrant

living room couch images
(Image credit: Tim Lenz / Samantha Todhunter / Patrick Cline / Kitesgrove)

The living room is one of the most used spaces in the home, for both entertaining guests and relaxing at the end of a long day. As a result, it is worth paying attention to living room cleanliness and how it smells to prevent unwanted odors and create a space that feels soothing and stylish. 

Knowing the common mistakes people make when trying to maintain a nice-smelling living room is just as important as understanding what people with great-smelling living spaces always do. While neutralizing smells is an important step in making your home nice and fresh, there are many more tips you can try.

Our experts have shared the five common areas that people with nice-smelling living rooms never overlook, so you can copy them.

5 things people with nice-smelling living rooms never do 

By avoiding these common habits and consistently maintaining cleanliness and proper ventilation, you can keep your living room smelling fresh and inviting. 

Large floor to ceiling bookshelf, orange armchair, patterned rug, brick chimney

(Image credit: Neville Johnson)

1. Neglect cleanliness and organization

'People with nice-smelling living rooms never neglect the importance of cleanliness and organization,’ says cleaning specialist Shayne Jeramos. ‘They understand that a clean environment is essential for a pleasant fragrance to permeate the air.’ 

Regular dusting, vacuuming, and mopping are never overlooked, as these tasks help keep the living space free from dirt, dust, and pet dander. 

Additionally, people with nice-smelling living rooms never allow clutter to accumulate. They make it a habit to declutter and organize their belongings, ensuring that their living rooms are free from unnecessary items that can trap odors. This chest from Wayfair is a great option for additional living-room storage with removable wicker baskets and pull-out drawers you can store a variety of items and declutter your space. 

Shayne Jeramos
Shayne Jeramos

Shayne Jeramos has been a cleaning specialist at Bright Cleaners for over 2 years and has extensive experience with residential and cleaning services. 

2. Eat in the living room

Colorful living room with bespoke blue shelving, red patterned sofa, ottoman, side tables,

(Image credit: Sarah Brown)

Eating in the living room can lead to unpleasant and lingering smells. According to Parveen Garg, manager at Ola Clean, rugs and carpets are like sponges for contaminants, their fibers absorbing everything including smells from cooking and any dropped food particles. Paying immediate attention to spills will prevent lingering odors. Any form of liquid, especially organic ones like juice or coffee, can create a sour smell if not cleaned up soon.

Odors in rugs build up slowly and gradually, our noses become adapted to the scents that the rugs hold and never notice them. However, a person visiting the home can immediately smell everything. By restricting eating meals to the kitchen or dining area and keeping both of those spaces contained you can prevent any bad smells from entering and settling in your living room.

Parveen Garg
Parveen Garg

Parveen Garg is a dedicated and experienced Manager in the cleaning business, specializing in leveraging my extensive knowledge of cleaning practices and products to ensure exceptional cleanliness solutions. With 4 years of experience, he possesses a deep understanding of the industry and excels at leading teams to deliver outstanding results. 

3. Overlook pet odors

If there are pets in the household, people with nice-smelling living rooms never neglect their hygiene. Pets can contribute to odors, so they prioritize regular grooming, bathing, and cleaning of their pet's bedding or favorite spots. This ensures that any pet-related smells are minimized, allowing for a more pleasant living environment.

Dog beds with removable covers, from Amazon, make it incredibly easy to clean and reuse on a regular basis. There are also a number of cleaning tools available for when your pet gets too dirty. This Aquapaw pet bathing tool from Amazon is a multifunctional grooming product that combines the features of a scrubber, a bathing brush, a massager, and a shower allowing you to clean and groom your pet at home with ease.

4. Forget about ventilation and humidity

Living room with large window and striped sofa

(Image credit: Kitesgrove)

People with nice-smelling living rooms understand the importance of a well-ventilated and a humidity-balanced room. ‘Never underestimate the power of fresh air,’ says cleaning expert Perna Jain. ‘Opening windows regularly allows for natural ventilation, letting in the crisp scent of the outdoors.’

This helps to remove stale odors and bring in the invigorating scent of the outdoors. If you live in an area with poor air quality, consider using an air purifier, like this GermGuardian Airsafe+ Intelligent air purifier from Amazon to remove airborne pollutants and improve the overall quality of the indoor air.

Excessive humidity can also contribute to musty or damp smells in your living room. Invest in a dehumidifier, such as this home and basement dehumidifier from Amazon, if your home experiences high humidity levels, especially during humid seasons. Regularly check for and address any potential moisture issues, such as leaks or condensation, to prevent the growth of mildew or mold.

Prerna Jain
Prerna Jain

Prerna Jain is the founder of Ministry Of Cleaning, a top-rated cleaning service with years of industry experience. 

5. Rely on strong-scented cleaning products and avoid natural scents

Modern living room with bespoke, dark wood media cabinet, painting covering TV, leather chaise, glass coffee table

(Image credit: Studio Ashby)

While it may seem counterintuitive, cleaning specialist Janille Mangat states that relying heavily on strong-scented cleaning products can actually have a negative impact on the overall fragrance of your living room. ‘These artificial scents can linger and clash with other elements in your space, creating an unpleasant or overwhelming aroma. Instead, opt for fragrance-free or lightly scented cleaning products and focus on removing the source of any unpleasant odors.’

Incorporating natural fragrances into your living room will help create a more inviting and refreshing ambiance. Fresh flowers, potted herbs, and essential oil diffusers can subtly release pleasant scents that enhance the atmosphere without being overpowering. Opt for natural fragrances like citrus, lavender, or eucalyptus, which are known for their calming and uplifting properties.

Janille Mangat

Janille Mangat has been working as a cleaning specialist at VMAP services for more than 2 years and has extensive experience with residential and cleaning services. 


For how long should I ventilate my home?

Opening windows in winter is key in order to maintain a well-ventilated home. It is recommended that you ventilate it once a day for at least five minutes. If you can leave your windows open for a little longer, between 15-20 minutes, this will help to keep air flowing. 

Individuals with nice-smelling living rooms recognize that consistent cleaning is fundamental to preserving a pleasant atmosphere. By prioritizing cleanliness, organization, fresh air, and mindful fragrance choices, people with nice-smelling living rooms create inviting and refreshing environments for themselves and their guests to enjoy.

Seraphina Di Mizzurati
Contributing Editor

Seraphina is a contributing editor at Homes & Gardens, writing Solved features on organizing and storage. She loves to decorate and also grow her own produce from her home in London. Her previous experience includes working at Women's Health and Fabulous Magazine.