If there’s one thing DIY blogs don’t take into account, it’s the restricted freedoms of Australian renters. Even popping a wee nail into the wall to put up some home-made bunting can be a no-go. So, it can be hard to make your house unique and aesthetically pleasing. Here’s a few tricks I’ve discovered for prettying up your place without pissing off your landlord.
Apart from the odd spatula, I shop near-exclusively at op shops. You’re just guaranteed a more interesting and unique range. It’s a little more time-consuming to hop from shop-to-shop looking for items that tickle you, that’s true. But considering the financial benefit and the host of distinctive items, it’s worth the effort. Some op-shops even offer delivery of bigger items, like sofas, so just enquire!
Command hooks are the best nail-free option I’ve found; I’m not a shill for the Command brand, I’ve just genuinely found them to leave the least amount of mark behind (it’s like they were never there….*spooky music*). You’ll want to make sure you have the right hook for the weight of what you’re hanging, otherwise it might fall off, taking some of the wall paint with it.
This may not seem important to some, but it makes all the difference. I was feeling rather morose in my rental flat when my lounge room had the kind of white light globes fitted that made the room look like a surgical theatre. It made the room feel sterile and offputting; so I invested in a couple of tall floor lamps (I so prefer lamps to ceiling fixtures, I said, bougie-ly) and some warm white globes. The result was a more homey, cosy glow that made me feel much more at-home. Electronics can be harder to find a thrift stores, so I recommend Gumtree for this one.
Investing in indoor plants has changed the way I feel about my small, not terribly attractive rental. Depending on your space, and how much light it gets, do some research on the best plants for your home; you can have a go at a vertical garden, or even re-purpose a clothes rack for hanging plants. Indeed, a NASA study from the ‘80s narrowed down some of the best indoor plants for improving the air quality in your home. I recommend a nice big juicy monstera!
Sure, you might not be able to tear down those ugly kitchen cabinets, but you can make smaller, temporary changes in your home that will make more of a difference than you realise. Put some curtains over those ugly venetian blinds (hanging a curtain rod is another thing Command hooks can help with). Change over the globe covers in a room; do some research online on how best to work with what you already have. In my current flat, a wardrobe had been bolted to the lounge room wall by the landlord and we were not allowed to remove it- it’s an ugly thing, but I took off the doors (turning it into a TV cabinet of sorts) and added some temporary hooks in order to hang some decorative art on and around it and, hey presto, it looked miles better!
If In Doubt, Ask
If something is not specifically outlined in your rental agreement, just ask your landlord/real estate agent. A landlord may not, indeed, mind a few nail holes in the wall, but real estate contracts may not go that in-depth. Every landlord is different, so give it a go.
Image Sources: Pintrest, House Of Home.