40 Common Mistakes You Don't Realize Make Your Home Look Cheap

And the solutions are much easier than you’d think.

Written by BDG Commerce
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Logic would dictate that achieving an expensive-looking home requires an investment to match. But logic doesn’t necessarily prevail on this one. In truth, creating a home you’re proud of can be a matter of making a few simple swaps. Start by amending these common mistakes you don’t realize make your home look cheap — and relish in the instant results.

You may be making some of these mishaps actively, like holding onto chipped dishes and flimsy throw blankets, ignoring that grimy grout in your bathroom, or letting your living room furniture get covered in pet hair (it’s a struggle all pet owners share, we know). Others may surprise you in their subtlety. Ever considered how much greater of an impact live plants make on a space than fake ones, for instance, or how much those heavy window treatments and harsh overhead lighting are dragging down the energy of your space?

Either way, we’re not here to judge. Instead, let this list of common household mistakes inspire you to make a few thoughtful decisions about how to organize and decorate your home. Even more encouraging? All their solutions are simple, affordable, and accessible, thanks to Amazon Prime, so you can implement them ASAP.


Mistake: Not Upgrading An Outdated Bathroom

Solution: Use These Easy Peel & Stick Tiles

You can tell a lot about a homeowner’s taste by taking a peek at their bathroom. So if yours isn’t the best reflection of your aesthetic right now, give it a modern upgrade with these peel and stick tiles, which you can pop right over those outdated floors. Thousands of Amazon shoppers confirm that they’re so easy to apply, and, importantly, they’re waterproof and easy to clean. You could, of course, use these in your kitchen, too.

  • Available colors: 2


Mistake: Neglecting To Organize Your Pantries

Solution: Store Dry Goods In These Sleek Food Storage Bins

Even in the most pristine-looking kitchen, a messy, disorganized pantry can give off the wrong impression. These food storage containers are such an easy way to clean up those boxes and bags of dry goods. Available in multipacks in varying sizes, they’re made of BPA-free plastic with airtight silicone lids that keep food fresh, and their slim designs neatly stack up and nestle beside each other. They also come with a sheet of reusable labels and chalk, so you know exactly what’s in each container.


Mistake: Not Replacing Your Old-School Cabinet Pulls

Solution: Swap Them Out With These Stylish Brass Ones

For an interior designer-approved hack, swap outdated cabinet pulls with more modern ones, like these. Available in six finishes (including the champagne bronze pictured), they’re sleek and simple enough to suit any design aesthetic, from rustic to eclectic to mid-century modern. You won’t believe how much of an impact this small change makes on the entire room.


Mistake: Keeping Your Toilet Brush On Display

Solution: Hide It In This Discreet Holder

Yes, you need a toilet brush in your bathroom, but you don’t necessarily need to display it — and with its minimal footprint and antique bronze polish, this toilet brush holder is undoubtedly the chicest, and most discreet, way to store it. The stainless steel construction is rust-resistant and easy to clean, so it’ll always look brand-new in your bathroom. At less than $15 on Amazon, it’s a no-brainer upgrade.


Mistake: Relying On Fake Flowers For Decoration

Solution: Order A Real Plant In A Chic Planter

Though you can certainly find realistic-looking fake plants these days, they can still look a little cheap, especially in comparison with the real thing. Luckily, Amazon has an amazing selection of live plants that’ll make any space feel so much more “done.” This gorgeous bird of paradise from Costa Farms even comes ready to display in a chic, neutral planter that’ll blend in well with any decor; and since it’ll get delivered right to your door, there’s no need to lug everything from your garden center.


Mistake: Harshing The Vibe With Stark Overhead Lighting

Solution: Swap In Warm, Vintage-Inspired Edison Bulbs

Nothing ruins a room quite like harsh overhead lighting. Not only do these vintage-inspired Edison bulbs look much more expensive than traditional light bulbs in your fixtures, but the soft amber glow they emit wraps the room (and everyone in it) in a warm, inviting vibe. They’re dimmable, too, so you can set the mood for dinner parties and movie nights.


Mistake: Holding Onto Old, Chipped Plates

Solution: Upgrade To These Modern Ceramic Plate-Bowls

You know those worn old plates you’ve been carting around since your first apartment? Time to upgrade to something fresher, like these gorgeous, two-tone ceramic plates from Mora Ceramics, which’ll lend a clean yet warm aesthetic to your meals. Not only do the higher sides look so modern, but they’re ideal for scooping up pasta, rice, and pretty much everything else; and though they look like something you’d get at a local boutique, this set of four costs under $40 on Amazon.


Mistake: Letting Loose Rugs Slip & Curl

Solution: Pin Them Down With Rug Adhesives

Not only do curling or slipping rugs look untidy, but they’re so annoying (not to mention a tripping hazard). These genius rug grippers keep them firmly in place, and the triangle shape is designed to adhere to the corners, so they’ll remain completely invisible. They’re also easy to remove with soap and water, if need be, and importantly, they won’t damage either your rugs or your floors.


Mistake: Collecting A Hodgepodge Of Mismatched Mugs

Solution: Opt For A Cohesive Set

Another simple way to make your home look professionally decorated? Curate your mug collection. These glazed ceramic mugs are so chic, they’ll make your morning cup of coffee feel that much more special — and your cabinets much more pleasing to look at. Take your pick from three shades (gray, white, or assorted neutrals), all available in a set of four.


Mistake: Using Old, Stained Dish & Hand Towels

Solution: Swap In These Chic French Linen Towels

Little details can make a major impact on a room. Take these French dish towels, for instance, which look so much nicer than your typical dish towel. Woven of pure linen with a classic stripe pattern, they’re lightweight and absorbent, but they double as effortlessly chic decor hanging off your oven handle. They’d also work wonderfully as hand towels in the bathroom for when guests come over.

  • Available colors: 3


Mistake: Neglecting Your Front Door

Solution: Give It A Refresh With A Coat Of Paint

When it comes to an expensive-looking home, first impressions matter. If your front door is chipped, worn-looking, or you just don’t feel that the color best represents the home inside, spruce it up with a quick coat of paint. Literally, just one — this genius all-in-one paint has a primer and a top coat built-in, and it’ll dry to a matte finish in about half an hour. It comes in 50 pretty shades, like the farmhouse-inspired sage green pictured and several shades of white, neutrals, darks, and brights. You can use it to refresh cabinets and furniture, too.

  • Available colors: 50


Mistake: Using Flimsy Throw Blankets

Solution: Get This Deliciously Soft & Fluffy Throw

A textural throw blanket always makes your couch or bed look more inviting. With a plush, cushy feel and neutral leopard print, this one looks especially elevated, and it’s guaranteed to be comfier than your flimsy old throws. Unsurprisingly, Amazon shoppers have awarded this decadent blanket with a near-perfect 4.8-star rating overall, and many report that they love it even more than similar styles from more expensive brands.

  • Available colors: 3


Mistake: Displaying Mismatched Soap Bottles

Solution: Decant Soaps Into Classic Glass Apothecary Bottles

Rather than keep a hodgepodge of plastic bottles on display in your kitchen, decant your hand and dish soaps into these classic apothecary-style glass bottles. Go the extra mile and pour your body soap, shampoo, and conditioner into them, too — it’ll make your bathroom feel like an upscale hotel. Choose from three colors: amber, clear, and cobalt, all made of lightweight yet durable glass that’ll always look clean and considered.


Mistake: Never Cleaning Your Tile Grout

Solution: Paint Over It With This Clever Grout Pen

Cleaning up grout may not be the most exciting job in the world, but sparkling-clean tiles and grout make a huge difference in how put-together your home looks. Luckily, this grout pen makes that job a hundred times easier, since you don’t even need to scrub — you can just paint right over the grout and it’ll look brand-new. Thousands of Amazon reviewers recommend it “for any easy and quick touchup,” and another raved, “This took me under an hour and I’m amazed at how fresh & new it looks!!”


Mistake: Not Updating Your Kitchen Backsplash

Solution: Use These Adhesive Subway Tiles

Just like the peel-and-stick tiles above, these adhesive tiles are the simplest way to upgrade an outdated kitchen backsplash. The white subway tile design strikes the perfect balance between timeless and fresh, and the material they’re made out of is water-resistant, heat-resistant, and easy to clean; so, essentially, they’ll function exactly like real tiles, without the time, labor, and expense it requires to install them.


Mistake: Cluttering Up Your Drawers With Plastic Bags

Solution: Store Them In This Sleek Bag Dispenser

Another case study in achieving an expensive-looking home through organizational solutions, this plastic bag dispenser is a genius fix for the problem of those jammed-up drawers in your kitchen. It’s capable of holding up to 30 plastic bags, and its sleek, simple design will all but disappear when hung on your wall — especially if you mount it inside a closet or cabinet. An unexpected hit on Amazon, it comes with over 24,000 five-star ratings to back it up. As one reviewer raved, “It didn't even occur to me that the storage of grocery bags could be neat, tidy, and even a bit attractive. Not to mention that it's so much easier to retrieve a bag without dragging extras out.”


Mistake: Keeping Your Under-Bed Storage Visible

Solution: Hide It Underneath A Classic Bed Skirt

Under-bed storage is a brilliant organizational solution, but it’s not necessarily ideal to keep it on display. Instead, keep those boxes and bins under wraps with the help of this classic bed skirt. With its clean, simple lines and array of neutral colors, it’ll complement most interiors, and make your bedroom look as crisp as a hotel room.

  • Available colors: 12


Mistake: Having Dark, Heavy Window Treatments

Solution: Replace Them With Light, Airy Linen Curtains

Ample light is key to an elevated home, so if you’re currently dealing with dark, heavy window treatments, replace them with these light, airy curtains. Made of beautiful textured linen, these semi-sheer curtains filter in plenty of light but soften any harsh glare. Any of the white shades would be especially fresh, but they come in a handful of soothing colors, too, like French blue and dove gray.

  • Available colors: 10


Mistake: Using A Grocery Bag To Line Your Bathroom Trash Can

Solution: Use These Discreet Bin Liners Instead

Yes, even your trash can benefit from an upgrade. Rather than using whatever spare grocery bag you have on hand to line your bathroom bin, opt for these discreet bin liners, which are made specifically to fit smaller trash cans (so they’re also perfect for the trash cans in your office or nursery). More to love? They’re super-strong, rip- and leak-resistant, tie up nicely, and cost less than $10 for a pack of 165.


Mistake: Keeping Your Floors Totally Bare

Solution: Invest In An Area Rug Made Of Natural Fibers

Vast expanses of bare floors can look ultra-modern, but in many homes, all that open space simply looks unfinished. The fix is to invest in a great area rug or two. This one, from classic design brand Safavieh (yup, it’s on Amazon), is a failsafe choice. The neutral-colored handwoven jute fibers can lean beachy, eclectic, modern, or traditional, depending on how else the room is decorated, and the expert craftsmanship will last forever. Considering how long you’ll hold onto this, and how instantly it’ll transform your space, it’s a serious bargain.

  • Available colors: 3
  • Available sizes & shapes: 28


Mistake: Keeping Your Spices In Mishmatched Jars

Solution: Decant & Label Your Spices Cohesively With This All-In-One Set

Whether you keep your spices displayed on a wall-mounted shelf, on a rack on your countertop, or inside a pantry, one thing’s for sure: if they’re mistmatched, they’re going to make your kitchen look disorganized and cheap. Instead, decant your spices into these matching jars that come with sleek bamboo lids and stylish labels. The kit even includes a funnel for no-mess decanting.


Mistake: Keeping TP On The Top Of Your Toilet

Solution: Upgrade To This Attractive TP Holder

Are you guilty of keeping a roll of toilet paper set upon the top of your toilet rather than investing in a proper TP holder? If so, you need to upgrade stat. This brass and marble toilet paper holder is particularly chic, and it even comes with a spacious shelf to hold a tiny plant, a candle, a book, or your phone. It’s a simple upgrade that’ll make a big difference, but functionally and aesthetically.


Mistake: Hanging Onto Old, Thin, Mismatched Bath Towels

Solution: Treat Yourself To This Plush, Super-Soft Set

One of the most common ways people are people are low-key making their homes look (and feel) cheap is by holding onto flimsy, old mismatched bath towels rather than biting the bullet and investing in a new, fluffier set. If you fall into that category, it’s time to pick up this four-pack of super-soft, 100% cotton bath towels that, surprisingly, cost just $40 (that’s just $10 a towel, which is a steal when you consider the quality). Over 17,000 Amazon reviewers have given this set a perfect five-star rating.

  • Available colors: 14


Mistake: Not Cleaning Scuffs & Marks On Your Walls

Solution: These Melamine Sponges That Can Be Used For Everything

Grime, scuffs, and stains literally anywhere are going to make your home look messy and cheap. Luckily, there’s a simple cleaning solution you may not be aware of: melamine sponges. You can use these babies anywhere — on your walls or tiles, on stainless steel appliances, on dishes — to bring them back to life, sans chemicals or other cleaning products (they work with just water). And for $15, you can get a pack of 50, so you’ll be stocked for ages.


Mistake: Sleeping On Flimsy Pillows

Solution: Upgrade To These Hotel-Quality Ones

Ever wondered how to make your bed look cozier and more expensive, similar to how beds are in a hotel? Most importantly, you’re going to want to swap out any thin, flimsy pillow cases with fluffier ones. This two-pack fits the bill perfectly: They’re literally hotel-quality, and they’re filled with super-soft, yet supportive microfiber, which will make you feel like you’re sleeping on a cloud.


Mistake: Settling For Bare White Walls In Your Rental

Solution: Give Your Space A Major Upgrade With Stick & Peel Wallpaper

If you live in a rental and feel stuck with boring, bright-white walls — yet crave the look of something a bit more dramatic — here’s a genius solution: stick and peel wallpaper. This particular floral print feels so elegant and chic, and will instantly make your space feel 10 times more expensive. Plus, Amazon reviewers swear it’s just as easy to take down as it is to install.

  • Available colors: 4


Mistake: Allowing Your Wood Furniture To Collect Stains & Scuffs

Solution: Buy These Incredible Wood Touch-Up Markers

If your wood furniture has become ruined by scuffs and scratches, have no fear: All you need is this handy wood repair kit. Included in each order are 13 markers and wax sticks in assorted wood finishes that are designed fill in scratches and other types of damage. Skeptical? Over 6,500 Amazon reviewers swear by them (as do our very own editors).


Mistake: Not Giving Your Bathroom A Deep Clean

Solution: Buy This Best-Selling Power Scrubber

If you’ve neglected to give your bathroom a deep clean in a while and it’s showing, you need to buy this best-selling power scrubber stat. It makes quick work of heavy-duty cleaning, and, in addition to being super handy for tiles and grout, can be used for countless other purposes, like restoring your grill, tires, and almost any other appliance.


Mistake: Setting The Table With Single-Use Napkins Or Paper Towel Sheets

Solution: Upgrade To These Farmhouse-Chic Linen Napkins

When you’re hosting a dinner party, setting the table with single-use napkins or, worse, sheets of paper towels is an instant way to ruin your guests’ impression of your home (or your hostessing skills). Instead, invest in a set of pretty reusable napkins, like these, which are made of 100% linen and have a farmhouse-chic vibe. They come in lots of different striped styles in an assortment of colors, from blue and white to black and beige. You can also buy some matching placemats or a tablecloth on the same Amazon page.

  • Available colors: 38


Mistake: Letting Water Stains Damage Your Furniture

Solution: Set Out This Chic Marble Coaster Set

Water stains from glasses are one of the easiest ways to degrade your furniture — and we all know that scuffed, stained furniture can make your home look a lot less pretty. Luckily, the solution is simple: Buy some attractive coasters, like these, which you won’t mind leaving out, and ask your guests to use them when they come over. When not in use, these white marble coasters can hang out in their matching, equally-chic holder.


Mistake: Not Filling In Holes In Your Walls

Solution: Get To Work With This User-Friendly Hole Repair Kit

If holes in your walls have got you down, you don’t need to worry: Thousands of Amazon reviewers (over 25,000, at that) swear by this hole repair kit, which makes the hole-repairing process so much easier. As one Amazon reviewer wrote, “This is really as easy as ABC 123 just like the ads that we might have seen on programs where houses are remodeled and 3M products are used. It really comes handy. All you need is in one tube. A+.”


Mistake: Maintaining A Cluttered Countertop Or Kitchen Table

Solution: Set Your Most-Used Essentials On This Chic Lazy Susan

You know that cluttered area next to your stove where you keep all your spices, oils, and other cooking essentials? Well, setting them on top of a rotating lazy Susan, like this one, can instantly make said clutter look so much neater and more intentional. You could also set this on a kitchen table to hold things like sugar, salt and pepper, and a candle. Trust us: It’s a small upgrade that will make your kitchen look a lot nicer.


Mistake: Keeping Your Salt & Pepper In Their Original Bottles

Solution: Decant Them Into This Modern, High-Quality Matching Set

Here’s another detail you don’t want to miss, especially when hosting your next dinner party. Instead of keeping salt and pepper in their original bottles from the grocery store, decant them into these high-quality, modern-looking salt and pepper holders. Trust us: Oftentimes, it’s the smallest details that make the biggest impact.


Mistake: Letting Pet Hair Build Up

Solution: Clean It Frequently With This Best-Selling Tool

You can own the nicest furniture possible, but if it’s covered in pet hair, it’s likely going to look cheap. That’s why every pet parent should own the ChomChom: a game-changing, reusable pet hair remover. A number-one best-seller on Amazon, it’s so popular that it’s garnered over 95,000 five-star ratings to date.


Mistake: Buying Grocery Store Hand Soap

Solution: Invest In A Luxe Hand Soap That Looks Chic, Too

Here’s another prime example of the smallest details making the biggest impact. Instead of buying grocery store hand soap, invest in a bottle of hand soap from a luxury beauty brand, like Jen Atkin’s celeb-favorite line OUAI. This massive bottle of hand wash looks chic, lasts for ages, smells amazing, and is refillable. When you run out, don’t throw out the bottle — just order one of the 32-ounce refill pouches instead.


Mistake: Sleeping With A Thin, Flimsy Duvet

Solution: Upgrade To This Fluffy, Down-Alternative Duvet

Just like flimsy pillows can make your bed look cheap, so can a flimsy duvet. If you’re still sleeping with a thin duvet or even a blanket — or maybe your guest room could use an upgrade — pick up this best-selling down-alternative comforter. It’s a fan favorite on Amazon with over 40,000 five-star ratings, and it ranges from twin all the way up to California king.


Mistake: Not Keeping Your Utensil Drawer Organized

Solution: Give Everything A Designated Space With This Expandable Organizer

A messy, jumbled utensil drawer is a surefire way to scare anyone who opens it — so if you’ve yet to organize your cutlery drawer, add this best-selling bamboo organizer to your cart. It expands to fit most drawers, and it has plenty of room for all sorts of utensils, from standard knives and forks to bigger cooking tools, like spatulas.


Mistake: Not Paying Attention To The Smell Of Your Home

Solution: Keep An Essential Oil Diffuser Running

When you’re looking to upgrade your home, ambience is everything — and ambience applies to much more than decor. How your space smells can make a huge impact on anyone who walks through your door, which is why you’ll want to invest in an essential oil diffuser if you don’t already own one. Even better, this one comes with a set of 10 essential oils to get you started. Keep one in each room to give them their own unique vibe — try lavender in the bedroom, eucalyptus in the bathroom, and a blend of your choice — orange and clove, perhaps? — in the kitchen or living room.


Mistake: Cluttering Your Entrway With Scattered Shoes

Solution: Buy This Simple Tiered Shoe Rack Bench

First impressions are everything, so to give guests a good impression of your home when they first walk inside, you’ll want to make sure your entryway area is in tip-top shape. Instead of keeping shoes scattered across your mudroom or hallway floor, keep this tiered bamboo bench near the door for guests (and residents) to store their shoes. Choose from three colors: black, dark brown, or natural (pictured).

  • Available colors: 3


Mistake: Using A Cheap Plastic Garbage Bin In Your Bathroom

Solution: Invest In This Chic One That Makes A Serious Design Statement

There’s no easier way to ruin an otherwise cute bathroom than with a cheap, plastic trash can. So, take your aesthetic to the next level by investing in this super-sleek, gold-plated, stainless steel trash can — who know a garbage can could be so gorgeous? And the flip-top design is not only handy, but also keeps your actual garbage out of sight.

  • Available colors: 5