One of the most exciting things about being a homeowner for the first time is the ability to customize and decorate your home just how you like it. One of the biggest downsides to renting rather than owning is being much more limited in what you can do with the space. It’s yours but it isn’t fully yours and your landlord probably has some restrictions about what you can and can’t do. Here are some tips for making your rented space your own for as long as you’re living in it without breaking any rules.
Be clear of the rules
Step one of course is making sure you know what you can and can’t do to start. Most landlords are fine with nail holes in the walls and it won’t cause you to forfeit your security deposit but some landlords may have rules against it. Larger holes in the walls such as those needed to mount a television may not be allowed. Most landlords won’t let you paint the walls but some will so long as you put it back as it was before moving out. Read over your contract and make a list of any questions you have for your landlord about decorating that aren’t answered in your contract.
Assuming painting the walls isn’t allowed, or it’s just too much work, you can purchase some peel-and-stick removable wallpaper. Unlike traditional wallpaper that’s much more permanent and a major pain to remove, removable wallpaper peels right off without leaving any sticky residue so it won’t compromise that all-important security deposit or get you in trouble with your landlord.
Art and accessories
Purchasing artwork, throws, decorative pillows, and other accessories are a fun way to personalize your space without breaking any rules. If your landlord isn’t okay with nail holes in the walls, you can purchase mounting tape, putty, or strips that allow you to mount picture frames and artwork without making any holes or leaving any sticky residue.
Swap out hardware and fixtures
You can make some minor upgrades to your rental without getting into any trouble with your landlord. For example, you can swap out pulls or knobs for the kitchen and bathroom cupboards and drawers. You can upgrade the shower heads in the showers and the faucet in the kitchen. You can Also purchase new light fixtures. Your landlord may be willing to subtract from your rent the cost of some of these upgrades, but if not they may be okay with you leaving these upgrades behind. If the landlord wants everything back to how it was, store all of the old hardware and fixtures in a designated space and swap everything back when you’re moving out. You can take them with you for your next home or apartment.
Baseboard radiator covers
If your apartment or rental home has unsightly baseboard radiators, having them torn out and replace with a more modern heating system is probably out of the question and it would cost more than you’d want to put into a rental anyways. Baseboard radiator covers are an inexpensive and easy-to-install solution that will make those old baseboard radiators look much more modern and attractive. You can remove them easily when you move if for some reason your landlord prefers the old, ugly baseboard radiators.
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