8 Common Art Buying Errors and How to Avoid Them


Did you know that around 55% of Americans made significant design changes in their home in 2020? Decorating your home can make you more comfortable, feel confident when hosting guests, and motivate you. 

One of the best ways to decorate your home is to invest in art. Artwork can improve the appearance of your house, start conversations, and gain value over time. While there are many benefits to buying art, it’s easy to make mistakes if you are a beginner. 

What are some of the most common art-buying errors? Keep reading to learn how to create an art-shopping strategy. 

1. Not Knowing What You Want

One of the biggest mistakes you can make when buying art is not knowing what you want. Before you go art shopping, think about your style, where you want to put the artwork, and your favorite artists. 

If you don’t know what you are looking for before shopping, you are more likely to buy a piece of art that doesn’t match your home. If you don’t know what your style is, spend some time viewing art at museums to learn what you like. 

2. Making an Impulse Buy

Another common mistake that people make when investing in art is impulse buying. Impulse buying happens when you see a piece of art you like and buy it on the spot. 

While it may be tempting to buy a piece of art you love, it’s better to think about it first. Make sure the art is what you are looking for, and that it will look good in your space. 

Before you buy art, you should research the artist and learn more about fair prices. Don’t make any impulse buys until you learn to recognize high-quality art. 

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3. Failing to Set a Budget

Before you go shopping for art, you should set a budget. Setting a budget will give you realistic expectations when shopping for art. While art can be a good investment, you should never spend more than you are comfortable with. 

If you spend too much money, you could be unhappy with your purchase. If you want to invest in art while on a budget, you should consider fractional art investing. 

Fractional art investing allows you to own a share of a piece of artwork instead of the entire thing. Because investing can be risky, understanding fractional art investing is important before you start. 

4. Not Paying Attention to Size

One of the most important considerations to make when buying art is size. If the art you choose is the wrong size for the space, it won’t look good. 

Before buying, measure your space to determine what size artwork you should buy. One big mistake that people make is choosing art that is too small. 

To avoid buying the wrong size, consider taping off the size of your art on the wall. Having a tape outline will give you a good idea of how the art will look on the wall. 

5. Buying from Untrustworthy Sellers

Before you buy a piece of art, make sure you buy from someone you trust. There can be a lot of fraud in the art industry, so it’s important to learn about the seller before buying. 

One of the best ways to make sure you are buying from reliable sources is to look for the “Trusted Art Seller” badge. This badge means that the seller is monitored by a third party, they offer secure checkouts, and there are no customer complaints. 

You can find this badge on a seller’s website, storefronts, and art shows. If you buy from a local art seller, take the time to get to know them and research their work before buying. 

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6. Choosing the Wrong Orientation

Another important consideration to make before buying art is orientation. Even if you find the right style, size, and color scheme, if the orientation is wrong, the art won’t look good in your space. 

Landscape orientation is best for open spaces such as your living or dining room. Portrait orientation is best for narrow spaces, such as at the end of a long hallway or in a small bathroom. 

7. Not Comparing Prices

One of the most important steps when buying new art is comparing artwork prices. If you don’t compare prices before buying, you are less likely to get a good deal. 

While some pieces of artwork are one-of-a-kind, in most cases, multiple people are selling the same artwork. Before you buy art, search online and in local galleries to compare prices. 

While pricing is important, don’t focus only on prices. Make sure the buyer is verified and reliable before buying to avoid scams. 

If you are buying a unique piece of art, make sure you understand how to value art to ensure a fair deal. 

8. Failing to Care For Your Art

Another big mistake that people make is not taking care of their artwork. If you invest tons of money into your art and never take care of it, you are wasting your money. 

With fine art, you can’t just hang it on the wall and expect it to stay in perfect shape. One of the first things to consider is the hanging environment. Your artwork may need a certain temperature, humidity level, and lighting to stay in good shape. 

You also will need a conservation plan to maintain your art, and you should plan for natural disasters. If you have homeowners insurance, make sure you add your new art to the policy after buying. 

Are You Ready to Avoid These Common Art-Buying Errors?

Buying art is a good option if you want to feel comfortable in your home, impress guests, and make money. If you are thinking about investing in art, keep these common art-buying errors in mind. 

Was this article on buying framed artwork helpful? If so, check out our blog for more useful tips. 


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