5 Fun Decorating Hacks for Renters

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5 Fun Decorating Hacks for Renters

Lauren DiGiacomo · Oct 14, 2015

Being a renter definitely has its benefits. No yards to maintain, no snow removal in the dead of winter, and, if something goes wrong, you can just call the landlord to solve your problem. However, when it comes to decorating your place, this does pose some limitations as to what you can do to make your habitat more “fun” or a better representation of you.

Decorating can be enjoyable but it is also a lot of work – striving to make your apartment more specific to your tastes without over (or under) doing it is a definite struggle.  Where do you begin when it comes to decorating? What’s your style? Most of this will be determined by trial and error, or just simply giving yourself time to adjust to your new digs. Either way, chances are that the more time and effort you put in, the happier you will be with the finished product.

Stuck for ideas or ways to be creative? Here are 5 easy fixes to make your apartment more “you” without violating your lease or breaking the bank.

Light Switch Covers

This sounds simple, really, but have you ever noticed that when you move into a place (especially an older one) that the light switch covers can look either really boring, grimy, or both? This is a pretty easy fix to make. You can either go out to any local hardware store or search online to buy a pretty, decorative cover for cheap. In most cases, the old light switch cover should be pretty easy to un-screw and replace, and you can always take the new one with you if you decide to move to a different apartment at any point. If you are feeling creative, why not go out and get some adhesive shelf liner? These can also be found at any hardware store and tend to come in a variety of interesting patterns and colors. Once you have picked up a roll, measure the dimensions of your switch cover and be sure to mark off where the light switches will poke out of the cover once it is created. Use a pen or the pointed tip of a scissor to (carefully) poke out the area for the switch and cut off any excess liner. Then, simply adhere to your light switch. The great thing about this is when it’s time to move out, you can just peel these covers right off – it’s a small way to make your apartment feel more like your home.

Wall Art

May seem like a no-brainer, really, but there is so much you can do with wall art to really open up your space and personalize it. If you find you have lack of shelving or places to put photos and knickknacks, pick up a few cheap wall shelf units – these usually come in a variety of colors to match your space and you can arrange them however you want on the walls, depending on your artistic preference. Many photo frames often come with hooks as well and can be hung up on the walls in a variety of ways to brighten up your space. Not allowed to put holes in the walls? You can also buy adhesive wall art, which can be found in any home decorating store or website and sometimes even feature replicas of famous art if you really want to get fancy. These can really look great in your place and are easy to place on the walls.

Baskets

When facing lack of storage space or room to pile things like blankets or winter hats, baskets are a nice alternative. Some come with handles that can be used to hang from hooks on the walls and others are larger and can be placed on any free floor space that you have available. The cool part about baskets is there are so many different types and styles out there that you can find one to easily match with your décor and help to make your place more individual. There are a variety of sizes to choose from and, in some cases, smaller baskets can often be stacked to make more room or space, or even stowed under furniture if needed.

Bottles and Jars

Believe it or not, empty bottles and fancy jars such as mason or jam jars are a really easy and functional way to personalize your space. Many beer and wine bottles have some really ornamental label designs that make them easily re-usable for something like a flower vase and even a way to store or display jewelry. This can be done by fastening watches around the beer bottle neck or slipping bracelets over the top of the bottle – as a note, this often works better with longer neck bottles. Another trend that has been pretty popular is painting your bottle or jar. You can purchase acrylic paints at any craft store and choose the colors that you want to match your space, and, if you are feeling artistic, paint the bottles anyway you choose. Consider food containers as well – packaging can often be pretty enough that you can save it and store your necessities in it – why not take your empty plastic containers and store your make-up in there (for the ladies) or cologne (for the guys)?

Lampshade Covers

This is something that you can get really creative with. If you already have lighting, you often won’t need to buy a whole new lamp as many places sell lampshade covers separately. You can also go another route with this idea as well, since lampshades can be painted, spray painted, or even just covered with a light fabric to change up the lighting in a room. If you are feeling really ambitious, there are plenty of instructional “how-to” guides online for creating mosaic lampshade covers with tiny mosaic colored tiles.

All of these ideas are a low-cost and an enjoyable way to complete your space.  Decorating doesn’t have to be a drag, and although it may seem challenging at first, the more you work at it, the easier it will get to find your style and make your apartment a home.

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