Even if your rented accommodation comes fully furnished chances are that you’ll want to put your own stamp on the place and truly make it feel like your home. To do this you’ll need to decorate.
Unfortunately it can be hard to make the whole thing come together when you are bound by the conditions of your rental agreement, on a limited budget and/or have to work with the furniture that you’ve already got, but it’s nowhere near impossible. With a little creativity you’ll soon turn your rented rooms into a home you’ll love.
Read Your Rental Agreement
Whether you worked through an estate agent or found your rented accommodation on your own you should have a hard copy of your rental agreement in your possession. Read through this agreement carefully before you begin to formulate your decorating plans.
Generally rental agreements require that you ask the landlord’s permission before any big changes such as painting the walls, but they may also require that you ask permission before hanging mirrors and wall decorations or replacing items such as lamps that you don’t like – even if you are planning to leave these little items in lieu of those that you are hoping to purge.
As a general rule of thumb run your plans past your landlord if they require modifying the house structure (including what is on the walls) or the furniture, equipment or appliances inside the house.
Set Your Budget
Once you know what you can and can not do in your rented accommodation you’ll be able to formulate a design scheme and work out a budget. Even if this budget isn’t very big there are still many ways to incorporate your personal style in your place for less than you might think.
For example, becoming friendly with furniture and home goods shop assistants will help you get on mailing lists for special notices and sales while finding out when particular shops turn over their stock will allow you to snap up bargains before they are advertised or sold out. This knowledge may also help you net the first pick of new stock when it comes in.
Charity shops and second hand shops usually offer fantastic discounts and one-of-a-kind pieces, while design shops and craft shops offer a great array of material and trimmings that can be turned into bespoke curtains, duvet covers, table cloths and more.
Car boot sales, fairs and flea markets usually also offer unique items that will help you express your individual style. With so many money saving tricks up your sleeve you’ll be able to decorate your home at a fraction of the cost.
Work with What’s There
Even if that fake leather couch makes you shiver, it’s still part of the rented accommodation and you still need to incorporate it into your designs. Using ornaments to deflect attention from furniture is a great way to draw your eye away from what you consider the trouble spots.
Displaying vases, candle sticks, statues, book displays, tablecloths, photos frames and a variety of other knick-knacks will help keep your attention away from what you hate (and have no control over) and focused on what you love.
If an item is truly hideous, remember that throws and throw pillows can help disguise it but bright and bold patterns may draw more attention than you would like. Choose neutral shades and patterns that are comfortable, but not necessarily eye catching.
Decorating rented accommodation is not hard, but it will require proper planning to make sure that you stay within the conditions of your rental agreement, that you stay within your budget and that you work with the furniture already provided. Good luck!