A permanent upgrade is no go if you’re living in a rental apartment. Yet, you want to make the space your own, but you don’t want to invest in a bunch of permanent fixtures – or break your lease. What’s a renter to do? Fortunately, you actually have quite a few options. You can spring for nicer upgrades that you can pack up with you when you move out, or you can choose some more affordable, non-permanent ways to improve your apartment.
By adding your personal touches can help cover over the things you less-than-love and transform your new spot into a place in which you enjoy spending time. Here are four rental-friendly things you can do to improve your apartment without breaking the bank or your lease.
“Hangout” With Your Plant
Filling your apartment with living things is the better way to turn a house into a home. And because of many apartments’ pet limitations, plants are a great way to go. The only hiccup is that you only have so many windowsills. Fortunately, you can still maximize your greenery by hanging it without hammering nails into your walls or ceiling.
A simple solution to add hanging space for your plants is to use a tension rod. If you have inset windows, your rod can go up inside of them. The space above your kitchen sink is another great spot for your rod if you don’t have any cabinetry or shelves there. Once it’s secured, use S hooks to string up as many hanging plants as you’d like. Or, if you’re looking for a higher-impact, bigger-footprint plant area, buy an affordable hanging garment rack. Fill it with plants for a verdant way to improve your apartment.
Let There Be Light (Under Your Cabinets)
Usually, your rental kitchen is looking a little drab or cramped. Hence to fix that problem by an influx of light, but in a kitchen, it can be hard to find places to add it. You don’t want to give up valuable counter space for a lamp. Good news! You don’t have to – if you mount your light in a place you wouldn’t otherwise use. Adding lighting underneath your cabinets helps your kitchen feel bigger and more welcoming, plus it’s trending.
Stick It With Stickers
You can completely transform your apartment in a non-permanent way just by using a sticker-based solution. And they make stickers for just about everything! Hate your backsplash? There’s a sticker (or series of stickers) for that. Think your Formica countertops are hideous? Transform them into faux marble beauties with a stick-on sheet. Wish your appliances were chic stainless steel? Fix them with a sticker.
The trick with these stick-on solutions is getting a clean, smooth finish with no air bubbles. Choose a smaller sticker project to start, like covering your dishwasher. There are a bunch of options on Amazon you can use. Once you feel comfortable, you can move on to larger projects like covering your countertops or walls.
Upgrade Your Lighting Fixtures
You can do the simplest thing to upgrade your apartment’s lighting. You only need to use a cylindrical lampshade to cover your dreaded rounded, flush-mount ceiling fixtures. Just look for one with spider fitting and a circumference that’s slightly bigger than the circumference of the fixture itself. With some pliers, a sheet of acrylic and strong magnets, you can mount the lampshade over the lighting fixture for a fresh, new look. Check out the full DIY with detailed instructions from the DIY Maven on Curbly.