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Adjusting Line Spacing in Word 2007

Tuesday, March 1st, 2011 by | Filed Under: MS Office Help, MS Word

Rose from Coon Rapids MN asks:

When I am typing a document in Word 2007, I get a wide space between the lines. How do you reduce that space?

Rose, thanks for the question. The search for your answer helped me find an answer to a question I was too lazy to find for myself. Frequently, rather than pursue the answers to my own questions, I take the long route to a destination. An example of this weakness is the acceptance of the default settings in Word. Thanks to your question, my default settings in Word now match settings adjustments made on probably hundreds of individual documents over the last few years. This procrastination problem will have to be addressed……one of these days.

The width of the space between each line is controlled by Line spacing, and is easily adjusted document by document, by document, etc. Resetting the default, so that all new documents open with the preferred spacing, is slightly more involved, but not difficult. We’ll take a look at both methods here.

If you’ve just opened a document, under the Home tab of the ribbon at the top of the page, in the Paragraph section, you can find a button that controls line and paragraph spacing (hover your cursor over the buttons and a balloon will pop up telling you what each one does).

Click on the Line spacing button, check 1.0, and click Remove space after paragraph.

That will remove all the added spaces. If you’ve already started your document, you’ll have to select all the text (Ctrl+A) or just select the text you’d like to adjust.

You can also change the default settings, so that all future documents open with these settings. Still under the Home tab, click the arrow in the lower right corner of the Styles section. This will open the Styles dialog box.

Click the Manage Styles button at the bottom (way at the bottom).

In the Manage Styles dialog box, under the Set Defaults tab, font style and size can be changed, along with paragraphs, and line spacing. I chose to change the font to Arial at 11 points. The spacing was adjusted to single spacing in the drop down list, with spacing set at 1.

To save this for future documents, click the radio button beside New documents based on this template and click OK.


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7 Responses to “Adjusting Line Spacing in Word 2007”

  1. Bill says:

    Great tip, Kevin. You may want to include at your last step that Paragraph Spacing / After could also be set to 0 pt (like the Before spacing) to eliminate the extra space between paragraphs. Microsoft uses a new ‘Normal’ configuration for each new version of Word. I wish they would just let ‘Normal’ be normal with no enhancements.

  2. Donna LaFitte says:

    Thank you so much for this info. I volunteer for the Red Cross and this has driven us nuts. I will go set everyone’s computer with this as default. Thanks again.

  3. Harry says:

    Thanks a lot for this tip.I really had a hard time managing the indention and editing my documents until I cam across this in my mail. It did help me a lot.

  4. Carol Lee says:

    I am so glad someone asked this question. The only way I was getting rid of it was holding the shift key down and hitting the enter key….

  5. Angelika says:

    Best tip ever and well descriped with the pictures, simple to follow
    Thanks a Million

  6. gloria boggs says:

    I’ve just subscribed so I could express my appreciation for this tip This problem has driven me to exhaustion in the past. Now, I can breeze along with a smile. Thank you so much!!
    I do have a question that I hope someone will answer, how do I search for a specific tip?

  7. HAROLD says:

    I have just tried this tip for the line spacing which is great, and at the same time to set the default font.However I am now having a problem with my default font which should be VERDANNA 11 but it keeps coming back to Times New Roman 12 which I have never used and never selected. How do I rectify this please.

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