27 Sept 2022

Interiors: Revamping a rented home

Interiors with Louise Higgins of Aspire Design

Interiors: Revamping a rented home

Add an area rug like this Tobi Flat Weave

If you are currently renting or thinking about renting a property, then my interiors column this week should offer you some assistance on how you can best inject your own style and personality into your new rental.

Quite often rental properties on the market are simply decorated so as they aim to appeal to a wider market of potential renters.

However, once you have the keys to your property there are plenty of ways you can enhance the property to reflect your taste. Most landlords do not mind tenants making changes provided they can hand back the property in the same condition they received it.

Here are some of my suggestions to revamp your rental.

Paint and Wallpaper

Paint and wallpaper are a great way to instantly update a tired room. Some landlords will have no problem with you updating a room whereas others might stipulate that you paint it back to its original colour at the end of your tenancy.

However, this is still worth the effort as it will make a major difference to the space. Consider painting feature walls rather than full rooms as this will make it easier for you to return to its original condition at the end of the tenancy. Easy peel wallpapers or removable wall decals are another great option for rental properties.

Add a rug

Rugs are a great tool to add instant warmth, texture, and personality to a room. Areas to consider are under a dining table or coffee table, in a bedroom, a runner on a landing or even an outdoor rug if you have an outdoor seating area. Whether you opt for a neutral or colourful rug it will have a positive impact on your space and the best part is that it’s a piece you can bring with you if you move property.


Add a few key pieces to personalise your new home. These could include a coffee table or side table for a living room. To update a bedroom, consider the addition of a headboard. There are lots of different styles to choose from like leather, floral, velvet etc and these can give your bedroom an instant update. Make sure you store any original pieces of furniture as you will need to put them back before you vacate the property.

Cushions and throws

One of my favourite ways to transform a space and give it a homely feel is the addition of throws and scatter cushions. Whether to dress a bed or style a sofa these are your secret weapon and the perfect way to reflect your personality in a room. For added depth choose fabrics with different textures as this will add interest to your space.

Potted plants and flowers

Flower arrangements and potted plants are a great way to give your new rental a homely feel. Areas to consider are the dining table, coffee tables or side tables. Kitchen islands and bathrooms are also great places to add some greenery.

Hang some artwork

Landlords are probably grinding their teeth at this suggestion, but I am not suggesting drilling holes in the walls. Instead use command picture hanging strips for an easy installation where you do not need any tools or nails. The best part is they are totally removable without causing any harm to your wall. A tip to note is that you should wait seven days after painting a wall before you use command strips and you need to ensure you use the right command strip for the weight of your picture.


In a rental property lighting can have an especially important impact on a space. Consider adding additional atmospheric lighting such as table and floor lamps. The landlord may not be happy with you changing large ceiling pendants, but you could certainly add some easy fit shades directly to a suspended lamp holder to make a stylish statement without the need for electrical installation.

Thanks for taking the time to read my interiors column and I hope you found this helpful. Remember if there is a topic that you would like covered in a future column then please drop me a line with your suggestions.

Louise is a former winner of TV3’s Showhouse Showdown. Contact 086 3999926; email;

To continue reading this article for FREE,
please kindly register and/or log in.

Registration is absolutely 100% FREE and will help us personalise your experience on our sites. You can also sign up to our carefully curated newsletter(s) to keep up to date with your latest local news!

Register / Login

Buy the e-paper of the Donegal Democrat, Donegal People's Press, Donegal Post and Inish Times here for instant access to Donegal's premier news titles.

Keep up with the latest news from Donegal with our daily newsletter featuring the most important stories of the day delivered to your inbox every evening at 5pm.