With 5.4 million UK households now certified rented accommodation – and that figure rising – ensuring your house feels like a home can be hampered by landlord restrictions. Rented accommodation is often bare, bleak and basic – however help is at hand – our team of Decologists are experts in this field! A few simple tricks and their expert guidance can offer a simple solution, so here are our top tips to personalise your space – without losing your deposit…
Storage in a rented property can often be limited. Rather than hiring out a storage unit (which often works out more expensive in the long term), get creative. Vintage trunks and luggage can make a stylish statement in a bedroom or living room and are perfect for keeping throws and bedding neatly tucked away, or keep your eyes peeled for furniture with hidden storage – footstools and coffee tables, for example. Need something larger? Opt for a freestanding, wall-to-wall modular unit. Ikea will be your friend here and has the most impressive selection going, without breaking the bank.
Photo credit: IKEA, Cox & Cox
One of the simplest ways to completely transform the ambience of a room is through lighting. Throw away those boring cream lampshades and jazz up your lighting with a statement design. Original BTC is one of our go-to brands with a wide range of pendant, mounted or ceiling lights to suit both classic and contemporary interior schemes, while a simple Anglepoise lamp will update a home office or bedroom. For something more modern, try Fatboy – the Spheremaker or Candyofnie would make a colourful addition to any room. And the best bit is you can take your lighting with you when you move, so it’s a long term investment.
Photo credit: Original BTC, Anglepoise
Add interest to a blank wall with artwork; a simple yet effective way to introduce colour to your home. It doesn’t have to be a collector’s piece – the high street is awash with options. An old film poster or blown-up family or holiday photos can look just as effective. We love strategically propping large frames up against a wall or balancing them along a mantelpiece – an easy way to avoid having to get busy with the Polyfilla when you move out.
Photo credit: Miss Moss, My Domaine
Accessories are key in rented accommodation and can completely overhaul the look of a room. Books, prints, plants and antiques make a great addition to a mantel or windowsill. Display pretty objects you use every day, such as glassware or crockery, on an open shelf. The trick is to let your personality shine through.
Photo credit: Style me Pretty
Work with existing colour schemes
Work with your home’s existing colour scheme, rather than against it. This is often easier said than done – particularly when faced with an outdated 70s-style avocado bathroom suite or wooden panelled kitchen. Complement a cream scheme with shades of grey, terracotta or caramel, and add some texture with a throw or strategically-placed cushion. It may be worth speaking to your landlord about freshening your property up with a lick of paint – this will only make your space look cleaner and fresher, making it more appealing to potential future tenants in the long term.
Photo credit: Sheer Luxe, Coco Lapine Design
Texture is key
If your home feels a little cold and unfriendly, updating it with different textures can instantly make it feel far cosier. Throws, blankets and cushions can make all the difference – plus, in the cooler months, they’re practical too. On a similar note, introducing pretty prints will easily inject life to your space – replace plastic blinds with curtains and invest in some quality, plush bedding to instantly add colour to your home.
Photo credit: The Design Villa, Urban Outfitters
Rented properties can often feel cramped and claustrophobic – on the whole, the living space will be far smaller than that in a typical family home. Invest in a large, statement mirror and prop it up against the wall in your hallway or living room. This instantly gives the impression of more space by reflecting the light. Your local charity shop is often a goldmine for vintage-style designs, or Heal’s has an impressive selection.
Photo credit: Lynchpin of Nonsense
In need of further inspiration? Consult one of our Decologists – they don’t see a blank space as just a blank space – rather, the opportunity to let their creativity run wild. Prices per room start from as little as £125. Find out how you can make your rental feel like home, or take our fun online Style Quiz to find out your interiors tribe.