A colourful and bright living interior with an array of house plants, a bookcase and a wooden coffee table and chair. Image used in the How to make a rental house a home blog post.
5 May 2020

How to make a rental house a home


Decorating a rental property can be tricky. However, it is possible to make a rental house a home.

While landlords may not allow any permanent changes to be made to their properties, there are a number of ways that you can personalise the interior to make a rental home feel more like you.

How to make a rental house a home

Add art and mirrors

A gallery wall consisting of a number of colourful prints and houseplants.

Artwork is an easy and fun way to inject some personality and character into your rental home.

A gallery wall is one of the hottest interior trends at the moment and the mix of colours, sizes and prints that make up a gallery wall have the ability to completely transform a room.

If you are unable to use nails or screws, there are plenty of products on the market that will allow you to fix your artwork to the walls without causing damage.

A top tip for creating a gallery wall: plan how you would like your gallery to look in advance. Decide on the sizes that you would like each print to be. Cut pieces of paper to your desired sizes and stick on the wall. This will help you to visualise how your finished gallery wall will look.

Mirrors can add character and depth to a room, creating the illusion of a second window and maximising natural light.

A mirror can also help to open your space. If you have a narrow entrance hall, why not place a long mirror on its side? This will help the hallway to feel less claustrophobic and more spacious.

Experiment with colour and textures

3 colourful cushions rest on a grey sofa. Two coffee tables are in front of this sofa with an ashtray and a small plant. Image used in the How to make a rental house a home blog post.

Your landlord may not allow you to paint over the neutral walls, but that doesn’t mean you can’t add colour and texture in other ways.

Soft furnishings are a great way to add vivid hues to your living space and are also an easy solution to covering any unsightly areas. If you want to hide the worn sofa, why not add a cosy throw and some bright cushions. If the flooring is getting you down, you can camouflage it with a statement rug.

Curtains, bed sheets and towels help to add personality and character to a room so pick up some pieces that you love and display them.

Bring the outside in

House plants beside a freestanding ladder shelf.

If you are living in a rental flat or apartment, you may not have a garden or outside area to call your own. If this is the case, you can bring the outside in with house plants.

House plants can make your home feel bright, loved and very on trend. There are an array of house plants out there to choose from. You can also mix it up and have different foliage dotted around your living area.

If you are limited in space, you can try hanging planters and suspend them from curtain poles or a single nail.

Invest in some freestanding furniture

A freestanding bookcase. Image used in the How to make a rental house a home blog post.

Rental properties can often lack storage space which can then lead to an unorganised home.

Wall shelving could offer a solution to this however, you will need the landlord’s permission before you permanently alter the look of the property. Therefore, freestanding furniture will become your best friend.

You can invest in some beautiful freestanding furniture that you can bring with you on your next move.

A bookcase is often a first choice for many as it displays your possessions wonderfully and allows you to change the display to fit your needs.

Adding books, records, trinkets and photo frames helps to add a personal touch and colour to the room.

Set boundaries

Open plan living area.

The trend for open plan spaces is still going strong. Clearly defining each area in an open plan space can help to overcome any claustrophobia and can add different dimensions to your home.

A strategically placed sofa can help to differentiate the kitchen from the living area or a place of work from a place of rest.

A deep and backless shelving unit is another great way of creating a divide in an open room. Using a backless unit ensures that no light is lost and allows you to display items on both sides.

It’s all about you

A colourful and bright living interior with an array of house plants, a bookcase and a wooden coffee table and chair. Image used in the How to make a rental house a home blog post.

The best way to make a house a home is to fill it with objects that you love and those that represent you. If you are an avid collector of vintage items, have them on display. If you love to get lost in a book, create a little reading nook with blankets, cushions and lamps.

Items that have memories attached, such as fridge magnets, family photos, and holiday trinkets, can lift your spirits and make a rental house a home.

Discover more renting and letting tips on the blog.

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