Not too sure if this may be the problem, but if you click on "View" from the word toolbar you will see an option to allow for headers/Footers. If this has been set as default, then word will measure the 1.5 from the top line of the footer margin rather than from the bottom of the page.
This Header/Footer margin is to allow for page numbers and or other information. If I'm wrong on this, maybe someone with further help will see and correct. j.