8 ways to decorate a rented property
Despite the image of tenants being flighty characters who move home every six months, renters are living in the same place for increasingly extended periods of time. Rightmove research among nearly 1,300 landlords in 2022 found the most common length of a private tenancy is over two years, with a fifth (18%) of landlords saying their average length of tenancy has increased over time.
Zoopla’s findings from 2022 concurred. Its analysis found UK tenants were staying in their rental properties for an extra five months, with the average tenancy length at 75 weeks – up from 51 weeks at the start of 2017. In England specifically, average rental durations are lengthening – rising from 3.9 years in 2016/17 and 4.1 years in 2017/18, to 4.4 years in 2021/22, according to the latest English Housing Survey.
With average stays increasing in duration, it’s no surprise tenants want the property to feel like home. Tailoring surroundings to personal tastes is something that is achievable, even if the tenancy agreement sets out some restrictions. Known as clauses, a landlord will detail what is and isn’t allowed in respect of DIY and redecoration.
Once tenants are familiar with the clauses, they can start planning how to add colour and personality. While drilling holes in the wall, repainting in bold colours and wallpapering may be off limits, here are 8 ideas that will give any rental property unique character and style:
1. Add a statement rug: a rug is a great way to add colour and texture, as well as cover up a floor covering you’re not fond of. Interior designers advise to go for the biggest size rug possible for both impact and balance.
2. Go green with house plants: air purifying, mood boosting and affordable, house plants have so many benefits. Lush leaves, bright flowers and coloured pots will look fantastic against a plain wall and if you opt for herbs, you’ll enrich your cooking too.
3. Lead with light shades: many rental properties have bare light bulbs but shades can quickly be added for a designer look. Plain, pleated and patterned pendant shades are freely available and for maximum impact, buy matching examples for table lamps too.
4. Try removable wallpaper: if you’re prohibited from painting, investigate removable wallpaper. Specific ‘peel and stick’ varieties are designed not to damage what’s underneath or leave behind anything tacky.
5. Add the latest trend to tiles: in the same vein as removable wallpaper, you can buy stickers and self-adhesive paper, which add a temporary splash of colour to bathroom and kitchen tiles. Simply cut to fit, apply and remove with ease.
6. Let soft furnishings do the talking: if you’re faced with four magnolia walls, use this base as a foil for furniture. An armchair upholstered in cobalt blue, an ottoman in mustard yellow or a chest of drawers painted candy floss pink will really ‘pop’ in a neutral setting.
7. Accessorise with bold colours: cushions and throws are the natural place to start and it’s easy to create a design theme with these two items alone – perhaps Art Deco or botanical. You can enhance the look by adding matching items, such as candles and vases.
8. Try ‘no-damage’ strips and hooks: when nails, screws, pins and even Blu Tac are banned, tenants can try Command™ Strips & Hooks. These products are specifically designed to be damage-free and come off clean when removed.
If you’re thinking of adding a touch of personality to a privately rented property, please contact us and we will explain any clauses that are listed in your tenancy agreement.