How to Avoid Common Condo Decorating Mistakes


Establishing home décor that is comforting and reflects your personality is an important aspect of homeownership. For many condo owners, decorating is an ongoing duty that evolves over time as trends come and go, new furniture or accents pieces are purchased, and personal taste evolves.

If home design and décor is important to you, but you’re lacking the eye to select appropriate furniture or a color scheme, partnering with a local designer can help you accomplish your goals. Of course, if you’re new to the area, your condo building management or condo building services team may have a few recommended interior designers to share with you.

Although working with a design specialist can help you create an initial vision for your space, they can also help you avoid some of the common condo decorating mistakes that we, as a condo building management firm, see quite often. Whether you choose to work with an interior designer or rely on your own decorating know-how and taste, here are a few common condo decorating mistakes to keep in mind as your new home begins to take shape.

Trying to Fit Too Many Furnishings in a Small Space

Condo living is tight enough already! When you try to incorporate too many pieces of furniture into each space, or conversely, don’t fill the space appropriately, you end up making the space not only feel smaller but appear smaller too. Picking furniture that is either too small or too large for the space will also have the same effect.

That’s why it’s so important to incorporate a few pieces of furniture that can pull double-duty and easily be moved where additional seating is needed. Seating options such as poofs, ottomans or benches are a great option for condo living that can offer seating flexibility in both dining and living areas without taking up too much space or crowding a particular area.

Overlooking the Importance of Lighting

Not every condo receives a ton of natural light at various times of day. Therefore, it’s really important to consider alternate ways to control the light in individual areas of the condo, especially spaces that require functional use such as the kitchen and bathroom along with entertainment zones like the dining and living rooms. As you consider different light fixtures for each space, make sure to think about overhead, accent and low-light options that can help to either illuminate or create softer, mood-lighting via a dimmer switch.

Of course, when researching window accents, you should also make sure to look at the amount of light that each particular blind, shade, curtains or drape will allow in or block at certain times of day. And, don’t forget to touch base with your condo building services team to see if there are any regulations tied to window coverings in your community.

Selecting Furniture that is Too Similar or Too Trendy

Condo owners often fall prey to purchasing a large number of furnishings at once vs. collecting furniture and accent pieces over time. This is a common pitfall of condo decorating as it can often result in the selection and purchase of furnishings that are very one-note or overly trendy. This means no personality of variety!

Unfortunately, this mistake doesn’t make you look like a home styling expert 5-10 years down the road when everything wears out at the same time or appears dated. But, buying pieces over time, while also trying to make selections that vary in style, size, material, color and height, can help you achieve a unique, personal and longer-lasting collection of home furnishings.

Failing to Identify Individual Zones or Focal Points

Another common condo decorating mistake commonly seen by Chicago condo building management firms is associated with treating the entire condo as a singular living area. One way that you can help create purposeful zones within the home and maximize space is by balancing furniture, including seating, possessions and accents around a particular focal point.

In living areas, this focal point is often a television, window or fireplace while dining and bedrooms are often successful when a light fixture or attention-grabbing piece of art is used to create visual interest. In addition, using rugs or room dividers can also help to create separate areas specific to an entrance, dining, kitchen or living area.

Condo décor should always prioritize personal preference and intended use. However, we hope that being aware of some of these common mistakes will help you to create a beautiful, functional and unique home that you will enjoy for years to come.