Home Decor Upgrades for Apartment Renters

About 35% of Americans rent a home. Because you are renting a home rather than own, it does not mean you can’t invest in upgrades to make living more pleasurable. Sure, you recognize that you’re probably not going to install hardwood floors out of your own pocket, but if that will make a big difference in your life (a loved-one may be allergic to carpet, for example), it doesn’t hurt to negotiate a proposal with the landlord. Maybe if you pay for the materials and they will install? The biggest risk is that they say no. Who cares, you’re just where you started from.

However, there are things that you could do that are not costly. Architectural Digest has some excellent ideas that they have shared on Apartment Rental Upgrades, so no need to repeat the details (below is just the list), but we will look at other ideas to give you better options to consider.

First, the list from Architectural Digest:

  1. Hang bamboo blinds. …
  2. Swap out cabinet knobs. …
  3. Sticker over a bad kitchen floor. …
  4. Get a new shower head. …
  5. Just add plants. …
  6. And find a decent planter. …
  7. Paint the walls. …
  8. Tile a (removable) backsplash.
  9. Washi tape a design on the wall
  10. Swap your switch plates
  11. Hang art without framing it
  12. Replace the kitchen faucet
  13. Get a decent toilet paper holder
  14. Cover some walls (or a ceiling!) in fabric
  15. Put up a kitchen peg-board
  16. Switch out doorknobs
  17. Disguise your ugly fridge
  18. Hang a pendant bulb in a dark corner
  19. Add a picture rail

20. Contact-paper over your granny cabinets

21. Opt for a twin bed

22. Use a series of small rugs for hallways

23. Swap out bad lighting fixtures

24. Decorate with nature

25. Install LED strip lights in the kitchen

26. Get a new toilet seat

27. Add a sisal area rug

28. Upgrade your extension cords

29. Make throw pillows

30. Paint the ceiling

31. Mount your bike on the wall

32. Paint just your molding and trim

33. Layer the light

34. Turn your radiators into shelves

35. Add baseboards

36. Find some cute under-bed storage bins

37. DIY Some Art

38. Float shelves—and paint them the color of the walls

39. Swap out your vent covers

40. Disguise a heinous countertop

We all have certain expertise and skills, and ours being adhesive systems, so we’d like to suggest some improvements to a couple of items listed and add on to the list.

#8. Tile a removable backsplash.

A great idea to add color and texture as the detail states, but the material the list linked to is probably not the best option. It does not give you color and size options, nor any customization, besides not being the right material for water contact.

Instead, use wall-wrap that has an additional protective layer to protect against water. The adhesive will hold until you’re ready to peel off, and you could choose from hundreds of colors and graphics. See photo examples below (for video installation: click here )

#11 Hang Art without framing it.

They say to use Clips, tacks, and washi tape. The frame, they suggest, will hinder mounting to wall with the items suggested. There are better tools to hanging your art without damaging your walls. 3M Command Strips is well known for this task and readily available, but less well known, but more versatile and cheaper is Apartment Tape. Yes, specifically designed for use in apartments. The foam tape has the right balance of not too strong and not too week. You could cut to size you need and stack them together if you want to offset the art from the wall. And you could also use on framed art, as you would place them directly on the frame. Super simple.



Yes, they did not cover this life changing idea (ok, maybe over the top). Re-paint, Re-Tile your bathroom walls. It’s a peel and stick application. You could custom color or add any image you like. It’s great for creating an accent wall or create a lane of color. You could also strategically place a few custom cut pieces on your wall. Whatever your budget, you could find something. And of course, you could remove it when you move-out (or your landlord will love it and ask you not to remove!).

Here are some photo gallery examples of what you could do with V-Wrap wall wrap.

Check out these blog pages for costs: 15 Affordable Bathroom Wall Design Ideas