(Family Features) — Even if you don’t own the house you lease, there’s no reason you can’t make it feel like home by taking a creative approach to designing and decorating your space.
More U.S. households are renting now than at any point in the last 50 years. That’s why Invitation Homes, the premier home leasing company in the United States, put together a team of design experts to create the “Make It Home” design forecast with lease-friendly, affordable design and decor ideas created with renters in mind.
Before starting any design, you need a plan. Here are a few tips to reimagine your rental home:
Embrace color and pattern
Emily Henderson, author of “Styled,” a “New York Times” bestseller, believes color gives a room life, but it doesn’t have to be on the walls. With rugs, textiles and furniture, you can have a lively, fun, lease-friendly room by choosing colors that are on the opposite sides of the color wheel to ensure balance.
Temporary wall coverings
A permanent wall texture or design may be a no-no in a rental, but removable wallpaper is a yes-yes and an instant way to add personality to your space. Brittany Hayes, author of the “Addison’s Wonderland” blog, believes that bold and daring geometric patterns are perfect for creating an accent wall. Or simply incorporate your favorite colors to embrace a custom feel while you lease.
Staying organized is key when living a leasing lifestyle. “Live Pretty on a Penny” blog writer Erin Marshall recommends using space-saving and unconventional items that are beautiful and functional to effectively store and organize items. Look for furnishings that are both attractive and practical so you can achieve the look you want with the benefit of added storage. Options like nesting chairs or storage boxes that double as benches can add seating options with a modest footprint.
Maximize your living space by creating usable outdoor settings. With the right combination of outdoor seating, pillows, shade and colorful planters, you can turn any patio into an outdoor oasis, said Rhoda Vickers, author of the “Southern Hospitality” blog. Whether you treat the space as a garden retreat or an extension of your entertaining area where guests can spill out during a party, the right decorative elements can allow you to add livable square footage without any construction.
Make it a smart home
Smart homes aren’t just for homeowners. Options like thermostats, doorbell cameras, smart locks, light bulbs and smart plugs all can be easily integrated into a rented property, said Meghan Giddens, design expert at Invitation Homes. In fact, nearly everything in your home can be connected to the internet and controlled by your smart device. Just keep any originals stored safely, and when it comes time to move out, swap out your devices.
Light and bright paint
Cooler paint tones and white trim can brighten a room and offer a timeless color scheme. Plus, they welcome of-the-moment decor. If your lease allows it, Giddens recommends creating a light and airy ambiance with paint to bring a rental space to life. If you’re unsure about your lease guidelines, talk to your property manager before painting.
Visit InvitationHomes.com for more tips on how to make a rented house a home.