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 September 5, 2015)

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

Context Menus, Spell Checking, and Common Tasks

Automatic Spell Checking can change your menu options.

Discover More

Setting the Default Font Size for Comment Balloons

Straining your eyes to see the comments in a document? You can modify the size of the default font used for the comments, ...

Discover More

Changing the Color of a Cell Border

Excel provides a variety of tools you can use to make your data look more presentable on the screen and on a printout. ...

Discover More

Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Distributing Table Rows Evenly

If you've adjusted the height of your table and the rows within the table, you might want to later return all those rows ...

Discover More

Finding an Optimal Table Height

Word can adjust the height of individual rows in a table based on the information you put in each row. This may not ...

Discover More

AutoFitting Tables

Need to adjust the width of a bunch of table columns according to what is in the columns? Word provides a tool to do ...

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}] 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 five minus 2?

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.