Renting does not mean you have to set aside your desire to have a swoon-worthy homestead. Whether you’re planning to stay for the short- or long-term, here are some of my favourite tips for decorating your rental to make it feel like home.
#1: Breathe some life into it with plants, hunny!
Adding some greenery to your place can really give it life, so to speak, and offer a beautiful, luscious feel. Depending on how much space you have, consider one or two larger floor plants as well as a couple of smaller potted plants. If you are limited in terms of natural light, there are some great low-light plant options.
If you have a black thumb (that’s the opposite of a green thumb), you can invest in a couple high quality artificial plants. Wipe them with a damp cloth once a month to keep them looking great. Check these ones out:For some beautiful pots and stands, I suggest checking out Homesense and Structube.
#2: Add some personality with curtains
Beyond just being functional, curtains can serve as a great design element by adding a pop or colour, pattern and/or texture to a room. Some of my favourite trends are velvet curtains in shades like dark green, navy blue and blush pink. Patterned curtains can add a fun splash of personality to an otherwise understated decor. Take it up a notch with a double rod so you can layer different types of curtains, like cotton and sheers, solid colours and patterns, two different colours. When buying curtains, consider the height of the walls and windows you’re covering. Hang your curtain rod higher than the top of the window and ensure your curtains reach all the way to the floor. You will likely have to hem them (or have them hemmed) so they sit just above the floor and are the perfect fit (tip: don’t go too short!).
Check out the ‘How To’ board on my Pinterest page for some great tips on how to hang curtains like a pro!
#3: Let there be light...with lamps!
Let there be light! Pendant lamps, wall sconce lamps, floor lamps and table lamps - the possibilities are endless. Adding some interesting lighting to your rental is a great way to add some design flare and the best part is, like everything else on this list, you can take them with you when you move! You can play with different colour temperatures like cool and warm light, but try to stick to one tone per room for a consistent feel. LED bulbs will last longer and help keep your utilities bill low.
#4: Jazz it up with cushions and throws
Cushions and throw blankets are an awesome way to add colour to your space. Consider buying cushions and separate covers and so you can easily swap the covers from season to season or when you get bored of the current colour palette. Mix some solid colours with patterned cushions, patterns with patterns and aim for a couple different sizes. These bad boys offer a great opportunity to infuse the space with lots of style. Check out H&M Home for some great options.
#5: Make it feel like home with wall art & mirrors
You can have some fun with wall art, whether you opt for one large statement piece, a picture ledge with a variety of frame sizes and styles, or a gallery wall, adding art to your walls is key to a finished look in any room. Invest in some 3M Command Strips so you can easily hang your art without having to put holes in the walls. These are especially handy if you’re doing a gallery wall! Consider adding mirrors throughout your space as well to create a brighter and more spacious feel. My favourite stores for fun and affordable wall art and mirrors are IKEA, Structube and Homesense (are you noticing trend?).
#6: Invest in area rugs
Lastly, rugs! While rugs tend to be a bigger investment, they go a long way in adding style to your home. Some beautiful trends right now are jute rugs, muted colourful patterns and and natural geometric patterns. Round rugs are a neat way to define an area within a room, like a reading corner or entryway, if space provides. Don’t forget about a runner rug to jazz up an otherwise boring hallway! Rugs are great for mitigating noise transfer, too, so if you live in a multi-unit space or an older home with creaky floors - rugs help! Check out Wayfair for some great options and prices.
Sizing can be a bit tricky and you want to get it right since you’ll likely be dolling out a pretty penny. My best tip - bigger is better! In a living room, for instance, you’ll want your rug to tuck under the front legs of each piece of furniture. Check out my Pinterest page for some great guides to help you choose the right size rug for your space.
I hope you found this post helpful! Get in touch by clicking below if you have any questions or need advice decorating your rental!
If you’re thinking of selling your home this year, there are a number of steps you can take right now to make your life a lot easier when it comes time to put your house on the market. It’s no secret that selling your house can be a stressful experience, but preparing in some key ways will help to reduce the overwhelm of the process for you and your family. Keep reading for my 5 best tips!
#1: Think ahead to Moving Day
Wait - don’t freak out! ‘Moving Day’ can be a trigger phrase for many people (ok, mostly everyone who’s moved before), but thinking ahead now can save you a lot of work and drama down the line.
Here’s how: start by finding, repurposing or purchasing three large bins and label them “Store”, “Donate” and “Toss”. Keep the bins somewhere central in your home if you have the space. As you go about your day-to-day life, cleaning and tidying, keep in mind to look at the things and stuff in the various rooms in your home. Channel your inner Marie Kondo and ask yourself whether those are items you want to take with you to your future home. Some great prompts are: does this still work as it should? Does this serve me/us or add value to our lives? Would this be better enjoyed by someone else? Get your kids involved in this process!
Do this a bit at a time, or like Marie Kondo suggests, if one fell swoop. You might not love having three big bins in your space but remember it’s temporary and will ultimately save you some pain down the road!
Key Takeaway: don’t move stuff you don’t want to keep.
#2: Get around to that repairs list
Ya girl (or boy), it’s time. This can no longer be avoided! In the age of YouTube, there’s hardly an excuse for us to let those minor around-the-house repairs linger. But let’s be honest, that’s life! We can easily become blind to these small issues over time. Talkin’ ‘bout dripping faucets, leaky eavestroughs, scuffs and scrapes around the house!
If your repair list is only in your mind, get it down onto paper and *this is key* SCHEDULE IT. Estimate how long it will take and what supplies you need and then commit to getting it done by scheduling it in your calendar. If you need to hire a handy-person, make those arrangements.
Key Takeaway: you can’t run any longer, get those repairs done!
#3: Prepare the paperwork
Now is a great time to collect all the paperwork you’ll need as part of the selling process. Grab a folder and begin collecting the following docs:
Key Takeaway: track down this paperwork now and save yourself some frantic searches later!
#4: Don’t renovate!
Say what?? Yep, you heard me. If you’ve been thinking about renovating an area of your home before putting it on the market, I strongly advise you to check in with an industry professional first (i.e. a Realtor you trust, professional Stager or Interior Designer). Find out whether that renovation will create a return that is worth it for you. If it makes good financial sense, be sure to get some professional advice on what finishes are most loved by potential buyers. It’s important to be impartial in this process if you’re planning to sell. Renovate for the new owners, and not necessarily to your own taste. Many times I have seen pre-sale renovations that have not ultimately helped to sell the home or helped the homeowners recoup their reno investment.
Key Takeaway: Proceed with caution! Only renovate if it makes good financial sense and with the advice of a professional.
Note: I can recommend a professional to help you with this. In many cases, their advice is complimentary!
#5: Hire a Realtor you like and trust
A good Realtor will help advise you on what should be done in and around your home in order to sell. Many people use the rule of thumb to interview three Realtors before hiring one. Of course, professionalism, market knowledge and experience are super important. Ultimately, my best and genuine advice here is to hire someone you like and trust, someone who you feel has your best interests at heart and with whom you can easily and openly communicate.
Key Takeaway: A great Realtor will help you prepare to move, let you know when would be the best time to sell in your local market, what you should do around the house before listings and direct you to professionals if you need extra help.
Thinking ahead to moving day, or the process of preparing to move, can really help you stay focused on what matters most before you put your house on the market. Increase your home's appeal by addressing repairs, touching up paint and keeping clutter to a minimum before listing your place for sale. Following the 5 steps above will help you reduce the stress of selling and maximize your home's potential value. Try to avoid getting overwhelmed and remember to lean on your Realtor for expert advice support.
You got this!