Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Spacing Table Rows Vertically.

Spacing Table Rows Vertically

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated July 16, 2020)

1

When you are working with tables, you may wonder how you can easily add space before a table row. This can be important when you have the table formatted with borders, and the text in the table is too close to the border at the top of the row. Word makes it easy to add space after the information in a row, simply by adjusting the height of the row itself so it is greater than the space occupied by the information in the row. But what about before a row?

An easy way to solve this problem is with paragraph formatting. If you have a single paragraph in each cell of a row, simply select the row. You can then follow these steps:

  1. Display the Home tab of the ribbon.
  2. Click the Paragraph icon at the bottom-right of the Paragraph group. (The icon looks like a small arrow that points down and to the right.). Word displays the Paragraph dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The Paragraph dialog box.

  4. Adjust the Before setting so it represents the amount of space you want between the text and the row border. (A good setting is either 3 or 6 pt.)
  5. Click on OK.

You can also use this method if you have multiple paragraphs in each cell. The difference, however, is that you should only select and format the top paragraph in each cell, instead of formatting the paragraphs in the row as a whole.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (5988) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Spacing Table Rows Vertically.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Single-Character Fractions

Some fractions Word automatically converts to single characters, some it doesn't. Here's why that happens and what you ...

Discover More

Erasing Table Lines

When creating tables, Word provides a handy tool that you can use. Once the table is in place, you can use the table ...

Discover More

Drawing a Curve

Ever wonder how to add a curved line to your document? With a little practice, adding curves is simple. Here's how.

Discover More

Do More in Less Time! Are you ready to harness the full power of Word 2013 to create professional documents? In this comprehensive guide you'll learn the skills and techniques for efficiently building the documents you need for your professional and your personal life. Check out Word 2013 In Depth today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Adding Diagonal Borders

Want to add a border diagonally, through the middle of a table cell? It's easy if you follow the formatting steps ...

Discover More

Squaring Table Cells

Inserting a table is fast and easy in Word. You may want to make sure that the cells in the table are as square as ...

Discover More

Fitting Your Text In a Table Cell

Got some text you absolutely must fit on a single line in a table cell? Then you'll appreciate this rather esoteric ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is two less than 8?

2015-09-15 01:41:50

Liz McDowell

Another way would be to go to Table properties > options and adjust the top and bottom margins. 0.1cm = 3pt


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the ribbon interface (Word 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.