No situation exacerbates design commitment issues like living in a rental. When it comes to decorating, renters have more hurdles to overcome than folks who own their own place. For starters, you’ve got the tricky task of covering 80% of your floors in carpet, and every piece of art you hang is just another hole you’ll need to patch in a few years’ time. And let’s not even talk about getting that sofa up three flights of stairs and down that narrow hallway…
Needless to say, the task of decorating a rental can be daunting and might leave you asking “why even bother?”
But there are easy and affordable rental decorating ideas that can easily (and temporarily) make any place feel like yours. Whether you just like updating your home on the regular or just need temporary decor ideas, the trick is to find flexible design solutions that let you add and subtract to your heart’s desire.
We’ve rounded up 6 rental decorating ideas that can help you create a home you love, without the commitment.
Start With Great Foundations
1. Invest in Quality Basics
Spaces that are easy to update at any time generally rely on strong foundational pieces. This means furniture that is neutral, versatile, and can go with anything.
Think of these as basics that you can build on, like a leather sofa, a quality dining set, or a classic wood storage piece. If you’re looking for pieces that can move with you, make sure they’re high-quality and can work with a range of styles over time.
Not sure how much to spend on a sofa? Our guide can help.
2. Opt for a Natural Fiber Rug
Just like your foundational furniture, a natural-fiber rug makes for a great neutral base that you can easily design on top of. Not only does it go with any decor, a natural fiber rug is also durable and can last for years. You can always swap out your smaller decor pieces, be it bright-colored pillows, graphic black-and-white art, or a traditional leather armchair.
Learn more: Find The Right Natural-Fiber Rug For Your Home
3. Consider Modular Designs
One of our favorite rental decorating ideas are easy-to-assemble (and disassemble) modular pieces. Flexible by nature, these are great foundational pieces that you can tailor to fit your current space and your next one. If you’re all about rearranging parts and pieces frequently in one room, a modular sofa or sectional can be a great option that lets you take apart the seat and put it back together as needed.
Our Modular Pick: Sofa by Burrow, which ships in a box and can be easily expanded from a loveseat to a sofa to a sectional.
Rethink Versatile Designs
4. Try the One Piece, Any Room Approach
For designs that are easy to swap in and out of rooms, aim for pieces that can live in multiple spaces in your home. Think about pairing that can travel from the living room and bedroom, or the family room to the office.
Accents such as plants, ottomans and benches, and art are perfect pieces that you can rotate from room to room. This is an easy way to give your spaces a completely new look and feel, no money spent. One of our favorites are rugs, which can be easily moved from room to room.
5. Swap Your Pillow Covers
Swapping in pillows might be the quickest way to switch up the look in any room. Buy one set of inserts and rotate covers seasonally. You can cycle through neutral options, bright colors, and patterns for a fresh look.
Learn More: 5 Ways to Update Your Home for Spring
6. Add a Fresh Coat of Paint
A fresh coat of paint is one of the easiest (and inexpensive) rental decorating ideas. Another option is to try peel-and-stick wallpaper, which is easy to apply and adds major visual impact. Opt for a bright solid color or go with a patterned one to add a whimsical look that you can switch out at any time.
Ready to Try Some Rental Decorating Ideas in Your Space?