VOLUME 4RFive Ways to Temporarily Redesign a Rental
By Jonathan Pressman
Renting an apartment has its perks, but when it comes to redesigning, apartment rentals can be pretty restrictive. In Florida and Texas, standard leasing contracts prohibit tenants from making alterations to the property without the landlord’s consent.

While some landlords may offer exceptions, those who choose not to can leave tenants feeling very limited in what they can do to upgrade their living spaces. Fortunately, for tenants who want to temporarily redesign their rentals, there are several ways to upgrade a home without violating a lease agreement.
1. Roll Out the Rugs.
Rugs can add a pop of color and texture to living rooms, bedrooms, kitchens or bathrooms. Rugs can make standing or walking on tile floors more comfortable, especially in the winter months. For single-family homes with bedrooms on the second floor, this can also prove useful for noise cancellation (or at least less squeaky floors). Another benefit of rugs is that they’re easier to clean than wall-to-wall carpeting, and can be rolled up and moved with relative ease.

2. Replace the Showerheads.
Temporarily replacing a showerhead is quick and easy, with many showerheads twisting off by hand. Over time, mineral deposits can clog showerheads, causing leaks or limiting water pressure. A new showerhead can also make an old shower look more modern.

3. Cover Up With Peel and Stick Decals.
Whether it’s countertops or backsplashes in a kitchen or bathroom, peel and stick decals can work wonders for almost any apartment. Sticker decals come in all sorts of styles, colors and varieties, from decorative tiles and wood to marble and granite. Decals don’t change the quality of a countertop or tiling, but they can improve the appearance.

4. Upgrade the Lighting.
A little extra light from lamps can instantly transform the look and feel of a home. In many cases, replacing light fixtures is another temporary do-it-yourself fix, but it’s something a landlord might have to sign off on first. Renters who get the green light to upgrade light fixtures should also remember to keep the original fixture unless the landlord says otherwise.

5. Use Mirrors.
Mirrors can enhance an apartment by creating the illusion of additional space; the larger the mirror, the roomier a rental can appear. Besides their usefulness in helping people dress and groom themselves, mirrors can increase the perception of an apartment’s brightness and depth. Mirrors also come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes and styles, many of which can serve as versatile art pieces to complement a home’s décor.

Redesigning a rental doesn’t require major renovations, permanent improvements or a lot of money. For renters who want to make their apartments feel more like home, there are plenty of options for a temporary redesign to make a space more comfortable and functional. From rugs on the floors to upgrading showerheads, small, thoughtful additions or adaptations to an apartment can go a long way.