10 Simple Ways to Give Your Rental a Spring Makeover – on a Tiny Budget

Just because you’re renting, doesn’t mean you can’t get on board with the home renovations- you just need to be a little more creative! Stylist Lulu Wilcox shares her ten top tips.

1. Add art and photos

Plain walls are safe and they go well with an uncluttered modern look. But if you’re in a mood to experiment, a piece of art or a framed photo can really bring some fun to a room. Kmart has some great affordable options, or alternatively why not get some family images printed at the Warehouse Stationery for just a few dollars. This is an easy addition for renters as you can use command hooks or mounts that don’t damage walls.

2. Revive your pantry

Those cereal boxes and plastic packets of pasta are anything but attractive. Try replacing them with some gorgeous glass jars. It will make your pantry so much more clean and organised! 

3. New table setting

This is one of the easiest and often overlooked ways to get a new look for an affordable price. A simple change of tablecloths, napkins, interesting salt and pepper shakers or placing a beautiful vase of flowers on your dining room table can make a huge change to the appearance of the space.

4. Storage solutions

No matter how much organising and redecorating you do, none of it really matters if you don’t have adequate storage in your home. Junk can quickly clutter every room if there’s not space to tuck it away. Unfortunately a lot of rentals don’t have much in the way of storage, so I’d recommend purchasing some cupboards, shelves, side tables or anything else with some extra draws to help make your home more organised and inviting. 

5. Perfect plants

Flowers and plants can really help elevate a room and there are so many options to suit every style of home.Whether they’re real or not (hello fake Kmart friends), greenery is super affordable and adds texture and a natural element to any space.

6. Adhesive wallpaper

Have you got an ugly painted wall in your rental that needs covering up? Or are you simply bored of all the white? Adhesive wallpaper is a great option for renters because it can easily be peeled off the wall and leave no damage behind. There are a lot of fun colours and patterns available out there, have a google around and see what you can find! It’s also easier than you’d think to apply to the walls, don’t be afraid to give it a go. To remove all you use is a little heat from a hair dryer to remove. Use on kitchen splash backs, wrapping your kitchen cupboards in vinyl contact paper is also perfect.

7. Rug up your rentals too

While I mentioned above homeowners could use rugs to create space in a room, for renters you might just want to cover up the flooring! If ripping up the carper or redoing the wooden floors isn’t an option, a gorgeous new rug is a great way to hide it.

8. The power of mirrors

When light hits a mirror, it has the ability to make a room look a lot bigger than it actually is. If you’re stuck in a small rental apartment, try placing different mirrors around the place. Large floor length mirrors leaning against the wall are a great option. 

9. Get curvy

Another hack for making a space feel larger is using furniture with curves. Women re always told to embrace their curves when it comes to clothing – now’s the time to do it with your furniture too! Using a round dining table, coffee table or rug gives the illusion or more space.

10. Make a splash with curtains 

Adding new curtains is another easy way to transform a room. This is especially good for those who have bigger windows because the curtains do take up a lot of visual room. And you don’t have to drill holes to hang a nice curtain – see this apartment decorating hack on how to cheat hanging a curtain rod. Also curtains can also rescue an over flowing wardrobe – make you own as long as you have a rod, two brackets and curtin to hide everything ( find a cove and measure the rod to fit)

Bonus tip – Don’t fight what’s there

The worst thing you can do when decorating a rental or apartment is to try and force a theme where it isn’t wanted. Example – if there is a teal carpet in your living room, you have to learn how to style with it, not ignore it. Compliment it by bringing in coordinating colours – even if you really want to decorate in red. 

Wood paneling in your kitchen? Work those warm tones into your decorating plan. It seems like 95% of the time a rental property will come with wall-to-wall beige carpet. So what do you do if you hate beige? Adding a rug in similar tones but different texture is the way to break up the monotony.

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