Apartment living has its own perks and downfalls for folks who can’t seem to have their own home. Renting out is cheaper than paying a mortgage and hiring home builders. Low maintenance, access to great amenities, and proximity to shopping centers and other commercial properties are also some of the many things you may enjoy.
The downfall? There are a lot of decorating restrictions. No painting here, no drilling there, no moving of furniture – there are just too many boundaries that keep your rental from looking (and feeling) like a home.
But just because there are a lot of no-nos that hold you back doesn’t mean you’ll scrimp on personality and style. Here are 7 ways to decorate your rental space and stamp your personality without upsetting your landlord.
- Invest in chic peel-away wallpapers and decals
First rule in apartment living: No painting. But what if you want a dramatic floral accent wall? You might have to stick to sticker-based solutions that are easily removable.
Skip standard wallpapers that are damaging to the walls – use peel-away wallpapers with bold colors and patterns. Floral and leaf prints never go out of style. For an added texture, opt for removable wooden planks, brick wall stickers, peel and stick backsplashes. You can also dress up your walls with decorative vinyl decals.
The trick is creating a clean, smooth finish with no air bubbles. Start with small projects, like covering the insides of your shelves. Once you feel comfortable and confident, move on to larger projects like covering your countertops and walls.
- Stick to stickers for mounted décor too
Second rule in apartment living: No drilling. But that shouldn’t stop you from having a gallery wall filled with photos and wall art, right? Adhesives are your best friend.
Sticky wall hooks come to the rescue. You can hang everything, including picture frames, wall clocks, jewelry, hats, and bags. Just make sure the items are light enough for adhesives to handle. If not, you can lean things you can’t mount on walls, like decorative ladders (which can be used to hang items), pictures, and wall art.
- Lean a mirror
Mirrors do the trick in bouncing light and making small properties, like rentals, seem larger. A mirror also acts as an additional window, if you’re lacking natural light sources. If you can’t drill walls and adhesives can’t provide enough support, get a large freestanding mirror. Pick the frame or style of glass that speak for your character.
- Accessorize like crazy
Just because the building is old and boring doesn’t need your apartment space should be. Go crazy over accents and accessories – even the smallest of details can visually change the space.
If you can’t commit to a sofa with bold colors, display vibrant upholstered items. Replace your fabrics too, like curtains, table runners, and pillowcases. Bring in texture, pattern, and color with area rugs. Boring walls? Add some glamour with a wall of drapes.
Balance soft elements with hard ones. Bring in metallic by hanging or leaning gilded frames. Adorn shelves with vases, figurines, souvenirs, and other accessories. Buy a striking centerpiece for your coffee table too.
- Light up with string lights
Want to create your own mini whimsical paradise? You can never go wrong with string lights
String lights are among the few things that look more magical in small spaces than in large ones. You can use them in a multitude of ways, such as adorning a large, empty wall, use them to compose words, creating a starry-night look to draw attention upwards, or framing a window or décor piece.
Going for a feminine boho-inspired home? Opt for “fairy lights” or micro string lights with bulbs that are about the size of a grain of rice. You may also go for globe string lights (Edison lights) that have larger bulbs if you’re more of an industrial and rustic design fanatic.
- Invest in a stylish clothes rack
Clothes racks aren’t only practical alternatives to expensive, bulky cabinets that take up a lot of space – they’re stylish too. They’re sleek, lightweight, and can be easily moved from one place to another. Garment racks are versatile too – you could use them for hanging plants beautifully.
- Maximize tension rods
Tension rods aren’t only limited to window treatments – they are versatile enough to use for hanging other lightweight home décor and household materials without creating holes.
You could use them for hanging plants, clothes, shoes, and sink skirts. They’re not only made for hanging things – let a few sit vertically inside the kitchen and you made yourself an organizer for chopping boards, pot lids, and other cookware.
- Bring in something fresh and alive
Whether you’re gifted with a green thumb or not, you’ll find houseplants as great ways to stylize your rental. They’re not only attractive – they do wonders for your indoor air quality, removing airborne toxins lurking in your home and give you a “breath of fresh air.” Boston ferns, bamboo palm, peace lily, and snake plants are some of the best air-purifying houseplants to care for.
Author Bio: Carmina Natividad is a resident writer for Wincrest Home Builders, one of NSW’s most experienced and well-renowned home builders aiming at building and designing modern family homes in Sydney, Newcastle, the Central Coast, and the Hunter. She loves writing articles focused in real estate and interior design.