Modern cream coloured kitchen

Don’t Make These 5 Kitchen Décor Mistakes When Showing Your Home to Potential Buyers

Common Kitchen Décor Mistakes When Selling A Home

The kitchen is one of the rooms in your house that can make or break a sale. If it’s impressive, it’ll be something that people viewing your property will remember. If it’s shabby and uninspiring, it’ll be something they won’t forget.

Before opening your house for viewing by potential buyers, take heed of these five kitchen décor mistakes that can be easily remedied, but are far too common.

1. Keep the rubbish hidden

It doesn’t matter which way you dress it – a dustbin just isn’t a décor item. Luckily there are a number of ways in which you can hide this unsightly, but necessary kitchen apparatus.

Fashioning slide-out storage for your bin by dedicating one of the cupboards or cabinets in your kitchen solely to the rubbish bin is as easy as taking the door off its hinges, and attaching it to a sliding mechanism that can easily be opened and closed. If you fancy yourself a DIY enthusiast, this project can easily be undertaken in not much more than an hour. A tilt-out cabinet is another way of hiding your rubbish behind a sleek, wooden finish that will easily tie in with the rest of your kitchen décor. An unused dresser can easily be converted into a storage space for your rubbish bin, too.

If you don’t own power tools, you can always install a simple curtain that will hide your rubbish bin and anything else that you need easy access to, but don’t want to constantly see.

When it comes to rubbish bins in the kitchen, it boils down to this: put it away. Storing the dustbin in your kitchen in a cabinet or otherwise out of sight is the preferable and hygienic option.

2. Keep the kitchen well lit

Lighting is an important practical and décor element in the kitchen. Make use of more than one lighting source to ensure that all surfaces are illuminated and that they can be mixed up for different occasions.

Especially because of the different areas of the kitchen that are used, lighting sources should be sorted into three different categories: general lighting, accent lighting and task lighting.

Task lighting will be different in every kitchen, as it illuminates those areas where different kitchen tasks take place. In this regard, some of the areas that might require good light sources are the countertops, cabinets, drawers and sink.

Accent lighting is there to draw the attention to statement décor pieces and interesting architectural details. Accent lighting should have a minimum contrast ratio of at least 3:1 (this means that it should be lit up three times brighter than the surrounding light in the rest of the room) or 5:1 for areas that are of particular importance in terms of design and decoration.

General lighting refers to the ambient light that fills the room when the rest of the lights are turned off. This should be bright enough to find your way around the kitchen, while still being able to see, but it should not dim out the task and accent lighting.

3. Ensure there are enough sockets

Nothing takes the joy out of cooking like having to unplug one appliance to use another. If the people coming to view your property are avid cooks, they’ll keep an eye out for this. When deciding how many sockets you’ll need in the kitchen, take the following things into consideration:

  • The amount of large stationary appliances most people have (fridges, freezers, dishwashers, washing machines and ovens)
  • The amount of smaller appliances people have (microwaves, kettles, toasters, radios)

Also, remember that there are a number of other kitchen appliances that you might not use every day, but that will need power sources when they are used, without having to unplug other appliances to do so.

Sitting down and drawing up a kitchen electrical wiring plan can help a lot to make a decision about the amount of sockets you need, as well as about their location in the kitchen.

4. Keep it comfortable

The work triangle is not dead! There’s nothing worse than tiring yourself out while preparing a hearty meal, and potential homebuyers will definitely want a kitchen that makes sense.

A kitchen needs a certain ergonomic flow to make it attractive on a practical level, but don’t forget the cosiness factor. The kitchen needs to be an inviting part of the house where people can kick back with a glass of wine. Make certain there’s enough seating and that the overall atmosphere of the kitchen is warm.

5. Close those cabinets

This is certainly a matter of taste and preference, but most homebuyers will prefer closed cabinets to open displays any day. At some point it might have been fashionable to display your Noritake and appliances in open cabinets. This is truly impractical, old-fashioned and your potential buyer probably wouldn’t like thinking about having to keep those cabinets tidy all the time. And while you may have lots of crockery, this isn’t the case for everyone. Install doors with sturdy and practical knobs or handles.


When it comes to the kitchen, try to make it a space that will appeal to the largest group of potential buyers. Of course everyone has their own preference and design style, but for all intents and purposes, you’ll want this space (because of its importance to buyers) to be a blank canvas that practically fulfils its purpose, but is easy on the eye in every way.

Upgrading your kitchen before selling your house doesn’t have to be an exercise that bankrupts you. Simply taking care with these small things will already go a long way in impressing potential buyers.