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7 Reasons Why Your Home Staging May Accidentally Look Cheap

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Any – and every – good Kitchener Waterloo real estate broker tries their best to emphasize the importance of staging their Waterloo Region home for sale to their clients And many nod, smile and agree, and do make changes.

However, there are some small details – details that we as experienced real estate agents have seen all too often – that can detract from the overall staging effect and can, dare we say it, cheapen the appearance of the home. Here are seven of the most common mistakes and a few suggestions for how you can avoid making them.

Wrong Proportions

From hanging your pictures too high, to buying oversized or tiny furniture, if a potential buyer feels like they just walked into a scene from Alice in Wonderland you are doing something wrong. Look at your home with an outsider’s point of view and try to ensure everything is ‘to scale’.

Cheap and Colourful

If you choose to go with less expensive options on your finishes, furniture or decor – which is fine, no one wants to spend too much on a home they are trying to sell – ensure you make neutral choices. Bold colours on inexpensive items can easily be spotted and stand out as cheap.


Even curated collections can be overwhelming. If a prospective buyer can’t put their bag down for a second beer down on your table without accidentally knocking something over — you’ve got too much stuff.

Try paring home decor accessories back and swapping a few items out seasonally. If you’ve got collections that can be easily grouped, try arranging them together on a shelf for a dramatic effect like this lovely vignette by Lauren Conrad.

The DIY disaster

HGTV has led some of us to believe we are the next Martha Stewart. But if you’re not super handy, taking on a large project, like tiling your kitchen backsplash, can be overwhelming and can often end up looking sloppy.

Opt to hire a professional instead and save your DIY prowess for smaller projects like hand-sewn pillows or updating finishes, things that can actually add some real positives to your home staging.

Fake Flowers

Although there are beautiful fake flowers that look tasteful, finding them can be difficult and often they require a hefty investment. Instead of choosing the cheap and not so cheerful option, opt for fresh flowers instead. Choose something that is inexpensive by all means, but ensure the blooms are high impact.

Hydrangeas have big beautiful blooms, try grouping three or five smaller vases for maximum impact. Don’t have vases? Mason jars or stemless wine glasses will do the trick too.

Dead Plants

Also included are wilting or soon-to-be-dead flowers. This might seem like a gimme but even the best of us are susceptible to thinking our green thumb has the power to resurrect the dead.

Poor Flow

Some call it Feng Shui but when it comes to your home, it’s really just common sense. If a would-be homebuyer ends up scraping a knee trying to get by your couch it’s either too big or inappropriately placed. Play with your layout or perhaps consider embodying the less is more philosophy by removing a few items.

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