How to make your rental feel like home

Boxes packed. Truck filled. Boxes unpacked. Sniffed out the nearest coffee shop and sorted the new route to work. You’ve made peace with the few elements of your new digs that didn’t quite fit the brief. The location is spot on, the kitchen has new appliances and the apartment's a great size. But the designer in you is maddened by the wall that wasn’t knocked out during the recent reno. What on earth possessed someone to choose that floor covering. And those light fittings don’t belong—as Dr. Seuss would say, “not here, not there, not anywhere!”

It’s your home, but it’s not your home

But when you’re renting, there’s not really much you can do to fix these sorts of transgressions. It’s your home but it’s not your home. You want to fix and redesign. You flick through design mags and are inspired, but can’t follow through. It hurts. Even the IKEA catalogue seems to taunt you with all it’s space-saving tips and helpful hooks, racks, and floating shelves that require you to drill into your landlord’s precious walls.

It’s enough to make you quit all things fun, save a deposit and sign up for 30 years of mortgage debt! But before you get too carried away, think about the things you can control. Cushions, of course! Cushions are the lowest hanging fruit on the interior design tree. Everyone knows changing your cushions is as good as a holiday, right? But what else? What could be done to that dresser? Those shelves? That bedside table? Heck, even that bed!

Accessorise your furniture

Enter Lux Hax Styl-panels like a bond-preserving, furniture-enhancing, design-enabling knight in shiny, mirrored armour (and other assorted surfaces that you may prefer.) Using Lux Hax panels to update and enhance your furniture is an excellent option for renters who are limited by tenancy agreements and condition reports.


Styl-Panel #1132 for IKEA MALM


Giving your large furniture pieces a face-lift can have a major impact on the style and look of your room. Also it’s affordable and won’t affect your bond. Reach a Hampton’s heaven with Styl-Panels #1132, Art Deco glamour with Styl-Panel #1114 or assured, timeless elegance using Styl-panel #1123. And don’t forget to check the range of handles STYLKEA offers. Handles are another great way to change up an old piece, like accessorising your furniture.

Designer look handles to accessorise furniture

The Lux Hax range of handles and knobs


Other decor ideas for renters

Large format art that sits on top of a sideboard or dresser requires no drilling.

 Large format art leaning on sideboard

Photo credit: Cococarpets

Wallpaper has come a long way since the gilded birds wallpaper in your grandma's bedroom. The folks at Luxe Walls promise that their removable wallpaper for renters is truly that. It’s guaranteed not to remove paint, plaster or your bond deposit.

Dropzone featuring removable wallpaper

Lux Hax dropzone project featuring Luxe Walls

Lastly, let's talk about lighting. Chances are that you inspected your new home during daylight hours and now, on just your very first night, you’ve developed a facial tic that’s flickering in time with one of the fluorescent tubes in the kitchen. When the light isn’t flickering, your home has the cold white glow of a research laboratory.

What you need is lamps. And with the latest generation of smart bulbs, you can pair your lamps to your smartphone to use their dimmer settings and home automation features.

Bedroom with side lamp and armchair
Photo credit: Room and Board

Hungry for more money-saving D.I.Y. decor projects?

Explore more projects below. 

DIY project: Hamptons-style floating sideboard DIY Project: IKEA Besta media console DIY project: DIY drop zone