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10 Tricks You Need To Know For Decorating A Rental Home

What turns a house into a home? Love, family, and interior décor, of course! Jazzing up your living space according to your personal taste helps to create a cosy and relaxing environment for you to unwind at the end of a long day. When it comes to decorating a rental home, you may face certain limitations, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have a beautiful home!

With some creative solutions, you can transform your rental home into a sacred and personal space where you can seek refuge from the world. Here are 10 tricks for decorating your rental:

1. Invest in good pieces of furniture

Living room with a grey couch and coffee table

It’s tempting to get a furnished unit, but they tend to be more expensive. Plus, you have less say over the furniture you get. Instead, invest in pieces that you like, and you can bring them with you when you move. Pick a few quirky, statement pieces to add a little pizzazz to your home!

2. Put up pictures and artwork

Is it truly a home if you don’t put up family pictures? One option here is to drill a few holes and fill them in before you move out. Alternatively, if you don’t feel comfortable drilling holes, consider decorating your furniture instead of the walls. Dot coffee tables and bookshelves with framed pictures and interesting artwork.

Even the fridge can be a canvas for interesting magnets and memorabilia. Another option is to lean a pinboard against the wall and pin up your favourite pictures. Adhesive hooks and hangers are also a great way to hang things up.

3. Add a splash of colour

A stack of colourful cushions

Even if your rental home comes equipped with furniture, there’s always room to jazz things up! Add some wonderful colours using rugs, cushion covers, throws, curtains, and bedding. Mix it up now and then to revamp your space. Perhaps vibrant yellow tones for summer and warm red tones for winter.

4. Have indoor plants

Three indoor plants on a shelf

Plants are a great addition to any room! They provide a pop of colour and a touch of nature to your living space. Choose the right plants based on how much sunlight your space gets, and how frequently you can water them. Pothos, spider plant, and aloe are a few low-maintenance indoor plants you can consider.

5. Use tile stickers

You may not be able to change the tiles in your kitchen or bathroom, but you can tweak how they look with tile stickers! They come in a variety of designs, and they’re easy to put on and remove. You can even replace them with different designs when you feel like it. No major renovations required, just remove the old stickers and put on the new ones!

6. Switch up the hardware


As the saying goes, the devil is in the details. There may be a few small details that aren’t to your liking such as the doorknobs or cabinet handles. Consider switching them out, but keep the originals safely and replace them when you move out!

7. Play around with the lighting

A bedroom with a king size bed and bedside lamps

If you can’t change the existing light fixtures, that’s okay! Invest in interesting floor lamps that not only brighten your living space but beautify it as well. Fairy lights are a great, inexpensive way to add warmth and a nice wow factor to your space.

If you have harsh fluorescent lighting in the bedroom, consider getting a bedside lamp that provides a dimmer, cosier ambience, perfect for unwinding and falling asleep.

8. Invest in storage space

Kitchen cabinet with glass doors

If your rental home doesn’t have enough storage space, invest in a few cabinets and shelves. These items can be both functional and decorative! In addition to giving you more storage space, cabinets with glass doors keep the dust away and can be used to display beautiful items that you treasure such as books and travel memorabilia.

9. Borrow or invest in portable items

Okay, this is more functional than decorative.

Malaysia is hot! Our rental apartment doesn’t have an air-conditioner in the living room, and we get a lot of sun during the day. The heat can be pretty unbearable. One downside to a rental home is you may not be able to mount things like an air-conditioner to the wall.

Instead, we invested in a portable air-conditioner. It’s by far the best investment we’ve ever made for our home! It doesn’t require drilling the wall. All you need is a plug socket and some space beside a window.

This is important because décor isn't just about how a space looks, but also about how it feels. Trust me, all the décor in the world can’t make up for a hot and stuffy space!

10. Cover it up!

A brown coloured rug on the floor, with a laptop, mug, and books nearby

Before you sign the lease, look out for any damages or stains on the walls and floors. Discuss with the owner about possibly having repairs done before you move in. If the owner is agreeable, sign your lease after the repairs are done, or at least have it in writing before you proceed.

However, if the owner isn’t so keen to pay for minor repairs, and you’re on a tight budget, you can creatively cover up stains or cracked tiles with rugs and strategically placed furniture.

With these 10 easy tricks, you’ll have the perfect living space in no time. Happy decorating!

How do you decorate your rental home? Do share your ideas in the comments below. I’d love to learn new tricks from you!

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Hi there!

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Hi, I’m Vidhya. I’m a freelance writer and millennial who often struggles with adulthood.

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