10 Brilliant Renter Friendly Home Improvement Ideas

When you rent a home or an apartment, the list of things you can’t do to them is longer than the list of what you can do. It makes it hard to turn a rental into a home. We all have our tastes and design styles, and making your home reflect your style makes living there comfortable. When you rent, that isn’t always easy to do.

We have a few tips to help you when you’re renting. Always ask permission from your landlord before making any major changes to the space. Even painting may require permission, and you may have to re-paint before you move to get your deposit back. Temporary solutions and accessories like pillows and other home decor are a great way to add your personal touch to a rental home.

If you really want to make a bigger change, with your landlord’s permission, these 10 renter-friendly home improvement ideas will allow you to express yourself and get your deposit back when you move out.

1. Frame the Bathroom Mirror

bathroom mirror framed with wood
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The frameless bathroom mirror must be the factory setting for any rental home. Consider upgrading by adding a frame around the mirror. You can easily create the frame with just a few pieces of wood and strong adhesive strips. The frame is easily removable and can help protect the mirror’s edges from potential damage. 

2. Change Out Cabinet Hardware

male hands installing new cabinet handle
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Cabinet hardware can change the entire theme of a room, and if your rental’s hardware isn’t quite to your taste, consider swapping it out. As long as the hardware can be fitted to the existing hardware placement, there will be absolutely no lasting change. Keep the old hardware to replace before you leave, and you have a rental-friendly upgrade in under a day.

3. Peel-And-Stick Backsplash

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Backsplash isn’t just about looks. It helps protect your walls from food debris and water damage. Peel-and-stick backsplash tile is an easy, renter-friendly upgrade and can be applied without specialized tools. A sheet of peel-and-stick backsplash can cost under $10, and adding it to a rental kitchen can upgrade the style drastically.

4. Towel Hooks in the Bathroom

bathroom towel hooks made from scrap wood
Image Credit: Anika’s DIY Life

Towel bars are nice and are the go-to in most bathrooms. The biggest problem with towel racks is insufficient space for multiple towels. Consider using towel hooks to keep the laundry off the floor. Hooks are very cost-effective, with a pack of 5 costing under $15, and removal is a breeze with minimal damage. You can also DIY your own using scrap wood.

5. Contact Paper Countertop

countertop covered in marble contact paper
Image Credit: Anika’s DIY Life

Contact paper is an excellent option if your rental countertops are an eyesore or if you want to refresh the space. Contact paper comes in various styles, is very easy to apply, and can be easily removed before the end of your lease. Marble contact paper can look real when you install it on the countertop. You can update your counters with this option for less than $20 out of your budget.

6. Removable Wallpaper

removable wallpaper in a living room
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Most rentals have the same blank white walls, which will match the most decor but leave much to the imagination. Consider making a focal wall with removable wallpaper. Removable wallpaper is cost-effective, doesn’t need messy adhesive, and can be removed easily without any damage left behind. It even makes a cheap and easy backsplash!

7. Switch Out Light Fixtures

smiling woman holding light fixture
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If the light fixtures in your rental aren’t your style, consider switching them out. Many unique light fixtures can be found at thrift and resell stores for significantly less than big box stores. Switching out light fixtures can sound daunting, but it will make a world of difference when done with care and a helping hand.

8. Wallpaper Backsplash

wallpaper as a backsplash in laundry area
Image Credit: Anika’s DIY Life

Adding wallpaper as a backsplash is a simple change to your space that will make it feel like home. Choose peel-and-stick wallpaper for easy removal when you move so you get your deposit back. See the complete makeover here

9. Custom Bathroom Towel Rack

DIY towel rack shelf
Image Credit: Anika’s DIY Life

Towel bars in the bathroom are necessary, but they can be ugly, and kids never seem to use them. To customize your rental bathroom, DIY your own floating shelf with hooks. This shelf sits right over the existing towel bar and can be taken with you when you move! Learn how to make it here.

10. Window Treatments

Woman raising a window blind
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Your rental may or may not come with blinds or curtains. If it doesn’t, it’s easy to add them; if it does, you can easily switch them out for something more of your style. When you change the blinds, keep the originals so you can put them back up when you move.

10 Genius Small Apartment Storage Ideas for Easy Living

image of the living room of a small apartment
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Organizing a small apartment can be a challenge because every inch counts. Whether you’re struggling to find room for your belongings or seeking ways to declutter your living space, these small apartment storage ideas will help you can maximize your space and create a more functional and aesthetically pleasing living environment. See them all here.

20 Smart Garage Storage Shelves to Get You Organized

woman getting items off of a garage shelf
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Garage storage shelves are the backbone of garage organization. Here are 20 ideas to DIY or buy to get your things off the floor! See them all here.

How to Organize a Small Kitchen With No Pantry

woman organizing kitchen shelves
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Maximize kitchen storage space with these practical ideas for how to organize a small kitchen with no pantry. Learn simple, space-efficient solutions to keep your kitchen clutter-free and fully functional. Learn how here.

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Anika Gandhi is on a mission to declutter and organize all the things around her and is here to inspire and encourage you to do the same!

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