A move into the first rental that you decorate on your own can be daunting.  First-time apartment renters and new college students discover many apartments and dorm rooms serve up a canvas of boxy rooms and blank white walls. The initial visual impact is blah, bland and boring. You want to make the rental feel like home, and the landlord wants the property returned without any lasting alterations or damages. You don’t want to break your bank account, but you want to introduce design that customizes the space. These are inexpensive ways to turn the anonymous space into home.

Transform with Lighting

Table lamps and floor lamps not only lend your individual touch to the place, but they also may be necessary if the rental has no recessed lighting. Explore do-it-yourself chandeliers and plug-in sconces.

Paint the Walls

Instantly personalize any room by painting white walls a color that reflects your personal style. Make sure you understand the apartment rules before you lay paintbrush to wall. Many landlords will approve a paint job if you restore walls to their original color when you leave. Others strictly forbid painting.

Put Up Removable Wallpaper

Avoid the landlord completely and use removable wallpaper instead of paint.  Love a deep, dark color that would be impossible to paint over? Choose any color or pattern you love, then just lift removable wallpaper off when you’re done with your rental.

Use Wall Hangings

Another temporary option that livens a boring space and lets you skip the chore of having to repaint is a tapestry or wall hanging. Consider them another form of art that you can put up with ease and whisk away with equal ease.

Add Life with Plants

Plants say a lot about your personality, and indoor plants breathe life into humdrum spaces. If you are a gardener, go with your favorite plants. If your thumb is definitely brown, add indestructible succulents or air plants. Buying inexpensive terra cotta pots and painting them fun colors will add pop to your plants.

Install Window Treatments

You could install pricey plantation shutters (but they can be hard to move when you move) or throw up cheap bare vinyl blinds (they filter light but don’t add a lot of pizazz). Curtains, however, can be moved easily, plus, they can be used in your next rental. They finish off the room and make you feel as though you are living in a well-decorated home.

Layer on Textiles

Textiles don’t belong just on walls. The different textiles and patterns of area rugs, throw pillows and blankets lend spice to a room.

Add Shelving

Bare shelves are trendy, especially in the kitchen. If you are not up to the task of installing attached shelving, place a board across bricks or books for a shelf that you can take with you when you leave.

Put Up Art

Use 3M Command Strips to hang inexpensive art if your budget doesn’t let you check out Sotheby’s just yet.   You may collect work from local artists inexpensively or find affordable art online. Your landlord is more likely to refund your damage deposit when you don’t leave holes in the walls.