03:47PM, Monday 21 May 2018
An increasing number of young people (46 per cent of 25- 34-year-olds) now rent their home, whilst saving for that all important first foot on the property ladder. Renting certainly has its merits, including greater choice of location, but restrictions often limit what you can do to make the property “your own” and feel like home. All it takes is a little inspiration to transform your rented home from bland to beautiful without upsetting the landlord and without splashing cash you won’t get back. Here are some ideas to get you started.
If you’re renting a period property, work with its structure and appearance and style your home accordingly. Don’t go ultra-modern if your home isn’t. Styling a rental home is about working with what you’ve got, not reinventing the wheel. Whilst you can’t reconfigure the layout, you can create zones using room dividers or a folding screen. Bookcases also do the trick and are the perfect option for storage and decoration.
If you’re likely to move frequently, you need furniture you can take anywhere. Modular furniture can be reconfigured and is easy to remove at the end of your tenancy. Several small tables, are better than one large coffee table that might not fit in a future home. Rental homes often lack storage space, so choose furniture that provides storage as well as looking stylish.
Check the rules with your landlord or letting agent and find out what you can and can’t do – there’s no harm in asking. Whilst your tenancy agreement will have restrictions, some landlords may allow you to redecorate especially if it could increase the value of the property. If you agree colours in advance and keep changes purely cosmetic, they may be more flexible and it doesn’t hurt to ask.
Lighting is an easy way to really brighten up your home and you can take it with you when you leave. Table lamps, down lighters, fairy lights or even candles can all be used to great effect to turn a bland space into something special.
Whether you’ve got wooden floorboards, laminate or carpet, adding rugs will inject colour and style as well as protecting your deposit. If you don’t share your landlord’s taste in carpets, find a sizeable rug to provide floor cover and instantly change the decor.
Unsightly sofas and chairs can be camouflaged with cosy throws or loose covers, while brightly coloured cushions and chunky throws add personality, colour and texture with minimal effort or cost. Textiles are the easiest, quickest way to your house a home. Replace ugly curtains for an instant uplift and choose covers and throws to instantly change the look of a bedroom.
Leases often prevent tenants from hanging mirrors or artwork. Check with your landlord and if picture hooks are forbidden, use picture hanging strips to keep the walls and your deposit intact! Wall stickers can be added and removed easily and come in a wide range of designs and colours. A large canvas or mirror propped against the wall can create a dramatic focal point in a room and you can use a mantlepiece, or freestanding cupboards to display pictures and accessories.
Plants and flowers add life and colour to your home and also make it smell fresh. If you’re not green fingered you can fake it with quality artificial flowers and plants, or buy indestructible cacti! Decorate outdoor space, if you have it, with hardy plants and comfy chairs for summer nights. You can create an oasis of calm with ceramic pots, solar lighting or candles.
Don’t stress about not being able to change the fixtures and fittings. Use the space and with some imagination and TLC your rental property will soon feel like home. For more information click here.
The Frost Partnership is a professional residential and commercial estate agency with offices across the Thames Valley. Click here for more information.
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