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Before You’re Ready to Own, Make Your Rental Feel Like Home!

Before You’re Ready to Own, Make Your Rental Feel Like Home!

Are you a renter who often finds yourself day-dreaming about the moment when you’ll finally be able to buy your own home? Well, snap out of it and start living that dream while you’re renting! Though it may sound undoable at first, you absolutely can make your rental property feel like it’s your own home – you’ve just got to treat it that way!

From the manila-colored walls to the nearly-matching beige carpeting to the outdated light fixtures and more, your rental home may seem like it is designed rather bleakly; but that totally can work in your favor. Instead of thinking about the neutral décor as simply hideous, think of it as a blank palette for your creativity!

Here are five ways to instantly make your rental feel less foreign and more like home:

1. Invest in Your Future (Furniture): Just because you don’t intend on living in your rental forever or even for the next five years, that doesn’t mean you must fill the space with tattered furniture or your old college futon. Though you may be only renting right now, it is safe to think long-term when it comes to the pieces of furniture you select for your home. Picking functional, stylish furniture that you intend to keep will put you one step closer to filling your forever home when you’re ready for it. In the meantime, it will make for one rockin rental!

2. Make a Few Light Decisions: From the dining room chandelier (or lack thereof) to the track lighting or even fluorescent lights (gasp!), it may seem like you have no say in what’s going on overhead at your rental. But, have you taken the time to ask your landlord about the lighting situation? True, light fixtures may seem a bit more permanent than the furniture you select, but it is possible that you could pick and change a light fixture or two for the duration of your lease – just don’t forget to take them with you when you go! Or, if you talk it over with your landlord ahead of time, they may even buy into the idea of updating their lighting. And, by “buy in,” we do mean they may even decide to foot the bill!

3. Throw in Extra Color: We’ve already referenced the manila walls and beige carpeting that seem to make your rental home feel like nothing more than a blank space. Without going to all the trouble of repainting the place, think about adding some temporary colors that you can take with you! You may be amazed at the amount of color that curtains, area rugs, pillows and throws can bring to an otherwise bleak abode. Couple those tasteful pieces with some of your favorite artwork, photos, postcards or other memories that you keep close. Now, you’re really personalizing your temporary place! 

4. Breathe New Life into the Place: If you’re looking to get cleaner air, easier breathing, less illnesses and more productivity out of an outdated rental, don’t feel like the potential for those pristine conditions has all but died. Simply add a few potted plants to the place! “Going green,” as in keeping a few plants and flowers in a rental property, can work wonders on your mind, body and soul! Houseplants are an inexpensive way to brighten up any room and their health benefits are indisputable! So, whether you think you’ve got a green thumb or not, consider adopting a few houseplants to breathe some new life into your rental.

5. Unpack… Everything!: This advice may sound silly; but, many people who don’t see themselves living in a place for the long run may be reluctant to unpack all of their boxes and bags. If that notion describes you, then answer this: how can you feel truly “at home” when some of your belongings are stacked up in boxes that are lining your closets, basements or any other available cubby hole? Make it a rule and completely live in your rental! Unpack everything! And, if you think you won’t use it, throw it out or donate it to someone who will!

Following these five easy tips will make your rental space feel like home in no time! And, when you are ready to take the first steps toward home ownership, you’ll be halfway there with the furniture, fixtures and frame of mind to make your home complete!