11 Easy Improvements for Renters that Won’t Break the Lease
Every house should feel like a home, even if you’re renting. Whether you are living there for a year, a few years, or a good chunk of your life, you want to make sure you always come back to a place you love. Although renting may not guarantee large changes such as knocking down a wall or getting new appliances, you can still turn your space into something personalized; somewhere that’s comfortable, familiar, and truly yours. Here’s how to improve your rental without breaking the lease.
Check with Your Landlord
Before making any changes to your rental property, be sure to check with your landlord or property management company. Your lease agreement probably has a clause or restrictions regarding any alterations to the property.
Accentuate the Walls
Maybe you don’t like the paint color your landlord picked out, or maybe the walls just seem a little old and lack luster. There are many different ways to make your walls stand out and give them some character. You can purchase removable wallpaper that’s just as easy to take off as it is to put on. If that even seems like too much work, there are many options to mount pictures, posters, banners, and other décor on your wall. For example, cover your wall with pictures of all the places you’ve traveled, or all the concert or sporting event tickets you have. It can even be as simple as hanging pictures of your beloved family and friends.
Don’t love the look of your kitchen or bathroom? Changing up the backsplash can make an entire difference. But of course, you can’t just go in and take apart the old tile as if you owned the place. Instead, purchase peel and stick tiles. This easy DIY trick is typically made from vinyl or plastic so it can withstand heat, water, and humidity, and will help spruce up any dull looking room. Plus, it’s easy to take off when you’re done with it or want to replace it.
Odds are if the backsplash is old, so are the countertops. Very similar to the backsplash idea, you can cover up the old to give you a fresh, new look. Heavy-duty contact paper will do the job in ensuring your space gets an upgrade. It also protects the counter from any stains, scratches, or other damage you may accidentally make. Then the cleanup is so easy that when you’ve gotten the most use you could out of the paper, you can easily clean it up.
Replace Light Fixtures
Sometimes when renting an apartment you may find dismal and dated light fixtures. Sure, they get the job done, but you want your fixtures to “light up the room” with style and charm. You can find cheap fixtures online, and it won’t take up much time to switch out your old one. It’s best to keep the old fixture, so when you choose to move out your landlord or the property management company will be able to switch it back in while you get to take your new one with you.
Cover Your Floors
Hardwood floors are a rare but nice bonus to a rental. However, in most lease cases you’re going to have to cover your floor a certain percentage (this is something you can discuss with the property management company). The good news is there are so many unique rugs and flooring options that you will definitely find something that suits your style and aesthetic of your home.
If your rental is filled with carpet, see if you can get them deep cleaned by a professional, which’ll help get rid of all the grime, dirt, dust, and whatever else may be hiding in there. This way your carpet will look new and feel fresh, taking away from the “ick” factor old carpets may have.
“Blinded” by Beauty
With however many windows your rental has, it’s nice to add some necessary privacy. Whether your place has blinds or not, adding extra shade and décor will help with the security and the decorating. There are so many options for choosing blinds; patterned or solid colored curtains, sheer curtains, different lengths, valance, and more!
There may be limited space at your place, but that doesn’t mean you need to splurge on a storage unit. Finding creative storage solutions is a great way to take advantage of your space, and there are various ways to do so without violating any lease regulations. There are many temporary closet systems that will allow you to add to an existing closet or create your own, and there are possibilities to create stand-alone shelves that will help you both store away little keepsakes and display any home décor.
Revamp the Grout
Old grout can make any tiling look dingy and dirty. There are simple and easy tools that’ll allow you to spruce up any out-of-date tile. Using a tile grout coating applicator is easy to use; tap the paint over the bathroom floor tile, wait a few hours, then wipe away the excess coating. This is a great way to make tiles look new, even if they aren’t.
Pick Your Furniture
Furniture pieces can go a long way when making a space your own. It can be a larger item like a couch or dining table, or a smaller piece like a bar cart or TV stand. Either way, new furniture can represent your originality. If brand new furniture doesn’t fit the budget, thrift shops and garage sales can have some hidden gems. With a little TLC, the new-to-you furniture becomes a staple that will make your rental feel like a home.
Little changes to your rental can end up making a big impact on your happiness. You want a home, not just a place to live. And by making these small efforts, you can do just that without breaking the bank, all while following the leasing rules.