5 Creative Ways To Transform Your Home When Renting

How to build a beautiful home - and still get your bond back.

Just because you don’t own where you live, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make it feel like home. “Making a rented space your own is so important,” explains The Rentovators Dan Brophy, who specialises in helping people transform their rental properties. “It’s extremely important for your wellbeing to feel as though you have ownership over a space -particularly at the moment when we are spending so much more time working and socialising at home.”

Knowing how to transform a rental place can also bring you flexibility, points out Brophy. “If you’re confident in being able to transform a space that might not be to your taste, it means you could live in a great location or a bigger place that otherwise you wouldn’t be able to afford. Getting creative can bring you a lot of freedom.”

Here’s how to change the look of your rental property, without affecting your bond:

Don’t ignore the aesthetic

Transforming a rental property isn’t about pretending it’s something it’s not. “It’s about working with the space and adding to it,” says Brophy. “If you’re in an art deco apartment, don’t try and make it modern, but lean into the features. A good rule of thumb is to use 70 per cent of the existing aesthetic, then add 20 per cent of complementary items such as furniture, and 10 per cent of accent items, such as homewares and accessories.”

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Add colour

“The easiest way to change the feel of property is by changing the colour palette,” says Brophy. “That could be with a large rug, a leaning bookshelf that’s painted in a colour you love, a statement sofa, or a gigantic artwork. All these things are very easy to take with you when you eventually move, but bring a sense of permanence to a space. Bringing a shot of colour into a space can instantly change the look and feel of a room.”

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Change the light

“The light in a room can transform a space, and instantly make it feel larger, warmer or more modern,” says Brophy. “LED bulbs are a great, but temporary, way of controlling whether the light is warm or cool in a room. Because you can control them with an app, you can micromanage the light through different times of the day, depending on what mood you want to create. A statement light shade or some neon artworks will also enhance the colour of light you choose, without bothering the landlord.”

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If you can’t fix it, hide it

Temporary curtains are a great way to disguise eyesores, says Brophy. “A sheer curtain on an extendable curtain rod can be great over old venetian blinds or ugly window fixtures. They can diffuse light, and can be a very glamorous way to soften a room.”

In outdoor spaces, screens “give privacy, hide ugly features, or simply add some decoration to an outside space,” suggests Brophy. “You can also plant vines or climbing plants in pots, then train them up the screen to create a lush green wall. Then, when it’s time to move on you can take the whole lot with you.”

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Personalise the space

Once you’ve brought colour and light into your space, and hidden the parts that aren’t aesthetically pleasing, you need to make it feel like yours, says Brophy. “Nothing makes a space yours like putting sentimental items on display. Whether that’s ornaments collected from your travels, or furniture that’s been passed down the family, a space that has your personal belongings in will feel like a home.”

If you rent your home, rather than own it, it’s still important to protect your belongings by insuring valuable and sentimental items. Learn more about how you can keep your lifestyle and your belongings safe with NRMA Renters’ Contents Insurance.