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You’re renting now, or you own a rental property and want to pass on home decor wisdom (and restrictions) to your tenants. Here are ways you can decorate, homeowner or renter.

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A tenant may not own the property, but it’s still their home. There’s no reason anyone should feel like they’re visiting the place where they live. So, where are the boundaries when it comes to home decor? What are some ways a property owner can help define them more clearly in the form of real advice on how to make a space homey without affecting the value of the property?

Here are a few ways to make a rented home feel like your home, while keeping both tenant and  landlord happy.

Fabric

From bold drapes to dramatic bedding, a tapestry on an accent wall to curtains over your closets, fabric can work the same way that paint does but with less lasting effects. It creates a pop of color that is easily removed. It’s a temporary addition that makes a lasting impression.

Many rental homes use neutral mini-blinds that do nothing for your decor. Add curtains that match your style, and your rental will begin to look more like home sweet home.

Decals

There are an amazing amount of decals on the market today, one to fit every taste. Whimsical characters, words to live by, majestic scenes, and trompe l’oeil designs peel off easily when you’re ready to move, and you can use many of them again. If you can’t find a design that suits your fancy, decals even come in chalkboard surfaces, so get out your chalk and create away.

children playroom daybed wall decals

Adhesive hooks and strips

These handy hangers have come a long way, and many of them can hold a decent amount of weight. That means landlords who won’t let you make holes in the wall don’t get the last word on your wall hangings.

Room dividers

If you don’t own, you can’t renovate the space, at least not usually. If you need a little more privacy or want to section off an area, consider using a room divider. Most of them fold up, and you can store them under a bed when not in use. They come in an array of wooden frames, fabric, and metal to fit any decor. You can also use a bookshelf to divide a space, function and form.

Paint

Your walls may need to stay neutral, but you can always paint your furniture. A bold pop of your favorite color can make things feel like home and make your furniture seem “more you.”

You can also use signature paint styles on accessories like trays, vases, and picture frames.

Floor coverings

The floor: another space where landlords go blah (for good reason, of course) but boring nonetheless. Cover up that neutral flooring with bold area rugs. Not only do they impart some of your personality, they also keep your landlord’s flooring protected so you’re less likely to need to worry about unsightly stains before moving.

contemporary area rugs

Yanchi Area Rugs – Geometric Collection from BuildDirect

One last note about making your rental your home: Know your lease. It is possible that your landlord will allow you to paint your walls and make more lasting changes to the home as long as you restore it to its original condition before moving.

Communication

If this is not stipulated, ask about it. Common allowable changes are paint, wall hangings, wall shelving, and hooks. Whatever you’re able to get your landlord to agree to, make sure you adhere to your word, and return the space to its original look (including any necessary patchwork) before moving out.

 

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Cate Morgan-Harlow

Cate Morgan-Harlow is an all arounder, writing about how-to, DIY, and design with gusto. She is a shadowy figure with a mysterious past.