Do you currently rent your apartment or home? If you answered yes, then you’ve probably gotten comfortable with your landlord making the rules. Generally speaking, no landlord is going to be happy if you suddenly blow out the walls for a more open floor plan, or you tile the entire bathroom a quirky color like lime green.

However, it’s totally plausible to take on a few reversible upgrades that will add some much-needed personality to your rental. With a few small but intentional upgrades, you can make your rental look and feel more like home – all without angering your landlord!

Here are our favorite renter-friendly upgrades that will instantly personalize your living space and make a major visual impact.

Upgrade the hardware

From door knobs to cabinet pulls, homes have a lot of hardware that is often outdated or inconsistent room to room. All you need to do is simply unscrew the old ones and add your new finds! (Hint: Be sure to save the old hardware so you can leave the landlord with the originals once you move out.)

This will not only modernize your rental, but it’s a simple way to add your own custom touch to the finer details.


Twin Star electric fireplace and TV console suitable for apartments with renters.

Install a renter-friendly fireplace

If your rental is missing that warm and cozy feeling, why not take on a renter-friendly fireplace makeover in your living room?

You may be surprised to learn that there are a number of fireplace options that aren’t overly involved or hard to install yourself. For example, these electric fireplace consoles can be plugged right into any socket.

If you’re looking for something even smaller to fit within a cozy nook, there are also freestanding electric fireplace heaters, which add instant charm and ambiance to a space.

Explore Renter-Friendly Fireplaces


Add a peel-and-stick backsplash

One of the easiest ways to transform your kitchen and integrate a different design style is to change the backsplash. Fortunately, there are plenty of peel-and-stick DIY backsplashes to help you customize your kitchen that are equally simple to install as they are to remove. Most are made from thick vinyl so you can trim them to the proper size.

Make sure that the area of the wall is completely dry when applying the backsplash, and avoid any moisture as things are drying so mold or mildew doesn’t form. When it comes time to remove the backsplash, all you need to do is apply heat (with a hair dryer or heat gun) and peel it right off!


Pile on texture with pillows and rugs

A fantastic way to make any space more aesthetically appealing is to focus on the materials of your decor. You’ll want to choose materials that sing with texture, as texture can turn a room from drab to fab.

Make any couch or chair look extra inviting with oversized woven pillows that are soft to the touch. If your flooring is weathered or consists of old carpeting, you can cover it with a vibrant and colorful textured rug that can act as a real focal point of the room. Adding tactile variation will make any space more visually attractive as well as physically comfortable.

 Wallpapered wall adds color and floral pattern to an otherwise bare wall.

Adorn the walls with striking artwork

Some landlords won’t be open to the idea of their renters repainting walls, but you can still transform the overall vibe of a room by hanging artwork that aligns with your style.

Whether you decide to create a full feature wall with a series of picture frames that display your travels and favorite memories, or you go for classic artwork like black-and-white prints or colorful landscape paintings, artwork is essential for communicating your personality.

As you get started on your peel-and-stick backsplash or your renter-friendly fireplace installation, you may want to check out these additional ideas for non-working fireplaces, which can transform the look of your living space.

Transform a Non-working Fireplace