5 WAYS TO MAKE YOUR RENTAL FEEL LIKE A HOME


“When I think of home I think of a place...where there’s LOVE overflowing” (in my best Diana Ross voice ever). I can’t resist the urge to sing that song when I hear the word “HOME”. If you watched The Wiz,  you can totally relate to me. As I digress...oh yeah….Let’s get to the point of this post. There comes a point in time, where one reaches a particular milestone in their life and the inevitable happens! And by the inevitable, I mean RENTING an apartment/ townhome/condo or house. Unless, you are really fortunate and skipped this phase of life (kudos to you). However, the mass majority of us will experience renting for a short or long term in our lives. If you are anything like muah, you have/or will experience this for a longer term in life. I’ve been renting for nearly 9 years of my life and I’ve learned so much within this timeframe. Most importantly, I’ve learned how to make my apartment “my home”, and true to my personal style. Often times I hear many renters, use lame excuses like: “I’ll wait until I purchase a home to really decorate” OR “when I move into my home, I’m going to hang pictures, paint the walls, and go all out” (cue my side eye). So, my follow-up to them is why wait? Ok, ok, I totally understand that some people do not “intend” to live in a rental for a long period of time, however if you are living in a space everyday, why not make it your own. Regardless, of your living situation at the end of the day, you should want to go home to a place that makes you happy! As much as home is physically a place, but overall it's a "feeling". Therefore, below I’ve curated a few tips to help your rental reflect your personal style and most importantly feel like HOME.

1. Use Your Wall Space

Paint is the epitome of making your rental feel “homier”. Paint can transform any place from drab to fab, in a matter of seconds! And contrary to popular belief,  it’s super easy to achieve. HOLD ON...and stop looking at the computer screen like that, because I know what you are thinking. “Now Ebony, you know I need my coins back from my rental deposit”. Yes, this is true! Therefore, I suggest you get approval from your landlord to confirm, if you can paint or not. From my experience in the past, my landlord was perfectly fine with me painting an accent wall BUT I had to paint it back. OR you can never ask for permission, paint the wall, and paint it back once you move. You REBEL!!! However, if you aren’t completely sold on painting your walls or you're just a scaredy cat, there is always Removable Wallpaper/Stick and Peel. Essentially, Removable Wallpaper is the equivalent of wallpaper, but it’s removable and very rental friendly. Also, you can spruce up your walls with washi tape or even art emboss foil tape to name a few. 

 The lovely Elaine Welteroth bedroom is one of my all time FAVS! The Valspar deep gray on the walls is the PERFECT color for this small NYC studio apartment.  Designed by one of my favs, Nicole Gibbon

The lovely Elaine Welteroth bedroom is one of my all time FAVS! The Valspar deep gray on the walls is the PERFECT color for this small NYC studio apartment. Designed by one of my favs, Nicole Gibbon

2. Invest In Versatile Pieces

As much as you are living in the present, with decorating your rental “home”. You want to make sure, that you are investing in great pieces that will not only serve the purpose in your “apartment” but pieces you can someday display in your future home. For example, coffee tables, side tables, and dressers to name a few are pieces that you can transition into your new home. 

 I came across  Katherine Voss small apartment on The Everyday Girl . Here bedroom furniture is the perfect example of investing in versatile pieces. She could definitely transition her bed and dresser to her future home, and it would look GREAT!  

I came across Katherine Voss small apartment on The Everyday Girl. Here bedroom furniture is the perfect example of investing in versatile pieces. She could definitely transition her bed and dresser to her future home, and it would look GREAT!  

3. Dress Your Windows

THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT! Please do not neglect your windows and show them no love. The Notorious BIG said it best "spread love it's the Brooklyn way". Trust me, they need LOVE too! Your rental will never feel warm and fuzzy, if your windows are cold and bare. This is the typical renter thing to do. Bare window treatments, are so unattractive, and less inviting. You can definitely refresh your rental home by adding more color and personality by simply hanging curtains. Quick tip: when hanging curtains in a small space, you should place the curtain rod about 6-8inches above the window, closer to the ceiling. Therefore, this makes the ceiling appear alot higher then it actually is. You can find some really nice affordable curtains at: Target, IKEA, Amazon, just to name a few. In the below picture, I purchased the curtains from Amazon, and you see how much personality it gives my room. Click the link below, if you are interested in these curtains.

                                                   I chose these curtains to add some personality and style to my living room space. 

                                                  I chose these curtains to add some personality and style to my living room space. 

4. Show A Little Character By Displaying Art

Displaying art or pictures is definitely a way to add character to your rental home. Now because you are renting, you have to be easy on the hammering (we want to get our coins back...remember?). To alleviate the stress of putting holes in your walls. You can make a trip to your local Lowe's or Home Depot and find rental friendly Command hanging stripes which doesn’t leave any holes in your walls. Moreover, there is an alternative for displaying art as well. You can simply layer 2 or 3 different sizes on the top of a dresser, table, or even the floor. Just lean against the wall and you are good to go! Once again no big holes or costly fees, but the IMPACT of art in your home will speak VOLUMES!

 I've layered a couple of art work on  my actual dresser , to prevent holes in the wall. But I do have a painting hanging in which I used the Command hanging strips.

I've layered a couple of art work on my actual dresser, to prevent holes in the wall. But I do have a painting hanging in which I used the Command hanging strips.

5. Accessorize For Your Life

I like to treat my home, like an outfit I wear. I put on my bottoms, my top, and my shoes. However, my outfit isn’t complete unless I accessorize it with lavish jewelry, a cute crossbody purse or tote, and a swanky large brim hat. Fashion jewelry and home accessories go hand and hand. I love to accessorize any flat surface, I have in my home. Whether it’s a vase, mixed with books, and flowers on my coffee table, your home is not complete if you do not accessorize to reflect your personal style. This gives your home character and your company always notice it!

 This is how I accessorize my living room coffee table. I'm always adding and changing things, but I think this coffee table speaks to my style and personality. It's so glam and I LOVE IT!

This is how I accessorize my living room coffee table. I'm always adding and changing things, but I think this coffee table speaks to my style and personality. It's so glam and I LOVE IT!

I hope you guys enjoyed the tips above to help you make your rental your home! Stay tuned for more tips!

xoxo, Ebony