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6 creative ways to decorate your rental property

By Olivia Hughes
Make your rental property feel like home with expert tips from an interior stylist. 

Just because you’re renting doesn’t mean your home can’t look like your own. While you may not be able to lay your own floorboards or paint the walls (unless you have a very accommodating landlord), you can still style your space to make it look and feel like you.

1. Pick a style theme

“Choosing a style or aesthetic that continues throughout the house makes a really big difference,” Eve finds.

“Whether that’s coastal, Scandinavian, modern or monochrome, just following it throughout the entire house makes it all come together and feel like a complete space.”

Carrying a theme throughout your home will make it all come together. Picture: Stayc Connolly Photography

Having a strong sense of theme as opposed to a fragmented collection of furniture and ‘stuff’, can make a temporary home look like your forever home.

2. Style-up your tech and appliances

When you have limited control over the larger style features of your home, it can pay to take extra care when choosing any items within your control.

For instance, avoid plonking a clunky, black TV in the middle of your living room when you can opt for something sleek and stylish.

Long gone are the days of a boring TV

“It’s also a good TV for renters because it’s easy to style, move and use in your bedroom or lounge room. It can sit on most surfaces because it’s so slimline.”

3. Cover your floors

Whether you have floorboards, tiles or carpet, it can help to invest in rugs to cover it up.

Rugs can help cover your floor and create zones for different living areas.

Not only will a rug protect the flooring underneath (adding an extra layer of security for your bond), but it can help define a space and lift its appearance.

“Rugs can help zone certain spaces,” Eve says.

“For instance, if you have an open-plan living and dining room, you can use a different rug in each space to create more of a zoned area.”

4. Create warm lighting

While you can’t alter the lights themselves in your rental, you can find alternative solutions. To start, consider swapping any cool-coloured, fluorescent globes for something warmer in living spaces.

Don’t have a dimmer switch? Use lamps, Eve suggests.

“You never know what you’re going to get in a rental in terms of the ceiling lighting,” she adds. “At night, you can use table or floor lamps, any sort of lighting that creates a bit of ambience.”

5. Hang wall art

“Art plays a major role in adding your personality to a space and bringing it to life,” Eve notes.

When it comes to styling wall art, she says the positioning and even type of art can depend on the space available.

Add some interest to those white walls with some art. Picture: Stayc Connolly Photography

“It depends on the size and scale of the room and your furniture,” she begins.

“But as a rule, it often works to hang one big piece above your bed or couch. If you have a hallway, you could do more of a gallery wall. With smaller pieces too, you can use the removable, sticky hooks.”

Before hanging any art, check with your landlord as to what you’re allowed to do. While adhesive hooks provide an option for many, if you want to hang anything heavier, you will need permission before you start drilling into the walls.

6. Add a few plants

Finally, Eve says plants give a rental a more home-like feel. Not only have indoor plants been proven to elevate your mood, but they have a decorative element that will pretty-up any space.

If you’re new to indoor plants, be sure to consult with an expert before purchasing. Seek advice for the best plants for your space (bedroom, bathroom, low-light, bright light etc.), lifestyle (is the plant poisonous to pets?) and experience level (opt for a hardy species if you’re going to forget to water it).

“Whether real or faux, a bit of greenery can bring a space to life,” Eve says.


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