Otarre Pointe Apartment Homes

How to Elevate Your Space Without Breaking the Lease

How to Elevate Your Space Without Breaking the Lease

How to Elevate Your Space Without Breaking the Lease


Living in an apartment can sometimes seem like a compromise. You're getting a roof over your head, but at the cost of design freedom and customization. However, with the right resources and a touch of ingenuity, you can transform your temporary living space into a personalized oasis. Here, we explore creative ways to enhance your apartment living experience—without risking your security deposit.


1. Artful Solutions for Blank Walls

The stark, blank walls of your apartment are essentially a canvas awaiting your creativity. Yet, traditional methods of hanging art or photos might not be viable. Instead, consider:

  • Peel-and-Stick Wall Decals: These temporary stickers come in all shapes and sizes, allowing you to create murals or abstract patterns without leaving a mark.
  • Washi Tape Gallery: This Japanese masking tape won't damage walls, making it perfect for creating a gallery wall. Plus, it comes in a variety of designs and colors to add personality to your space.
  • Lean Your Art: Avoid nails altogether by propping up larger pieces of art against the wall on a shelf or ledge for a more casual, gallery-inspired look.

2. Multi-Functional Furniture

In a small apartment, every piece of furniture must earn its keep. Choose items that do double duty:

  • Sleeper Sofas or Day Beds: For the occasional guest, a sleeper sofa provides seating during the day and a bed at night. Alternatively, day beds can function as a couch or a single bed with a stylish throw.
  • Nesting Tables or Ottomans: These versatile pieces can serve as side tables, coffee tables, or additional seating, nesting neatly when not in use.
  • Folding Tables and Chairs: Perfect for dinner parties, these can be tucked away when not in use, freeing up valuable floor space.

3. Lighting That Makes a Statement

Good lighting can transform the mood of a room, but in an apartment, you may be stuck with basic fixtures. Here are some ways to switch it up:

  • Floor Lamps: They're freestanding and come in a variety of styles, so you can find one that not only provides adequate light but also makes a design statement.
  • String Lights: These fairy lights come in all shapes and sizes, offering a soft, ambient glow. Wrap them around a curtain rod for a makeshift canopy or drape them behind sheer curtains to create a warm backdrop.
  • Smart Bulbs: Control the ambiance of your space with color-changing bulbs that are easy to install and remove.

4. Embrace the Power of Mirrors

Mirrors add depth and light to your apartment, making it feel larger and more open. Use them strategically:

  • Full-Length Leaners: In a corner or behind furniture, a full-length mirror can give the illusion of a larger space.
  • Gallery Clusters: Group smaller mirrors to create the illusion of a window or open up a narrow hallway.
  • Decorative Statement: Choose a mirror that doubles as art, such as one with an ornate frame or an interesting shape.

5. Storage Solutions that Hide Clutter

Clutter can make your space feel smaller and more chaotic. Utilize storage that not only holds your belongings but also conceals them:

  • Built-Ins: Freestanding bookshelves with attached doors or drawers work as functional wall pieces that can move with you.
  • Storage Ottomans: These not only offer a place to rest your feet but also provide a secret spot to store blankets, games, or whatever else you need to keep out of sight.
  • Under-Bed Storage: Use risers to elevate your bed, creating additional space for out-of-season clothes or non-essential items.

6. Create a Cohesive Design With Rugs

Even if you despise the carpet your rental came with, adding a rug can help define spaces and add warmth:

  • Area Rugs: Choose one large rug to anchor your living room or dining area, or layer smaller rugs for a more eclectic look.
  • Hallway Runners: Brighten up long, narrow spaces with a pop of color and texture.
  • Bathroom Mats: To add a touch of luxury and keep from slipping on cold tile.

7. Window Treatments for Privacy and Style

Bare windows can make a space feel incomplete. Dress them up with:

  • Temporary Roman Shades: These can be hung with clips and moved with ease.
  • Curtains and Drapes: They add drama and soften the lines of windows. Look for options that allow you to hang them without drilling holes, such as tension rods or command hooks.
  • Window Film: Offer privacy with frosted or patterned films that let light in but keep prying eyes out.

8. Bring the Outdoors In

Plants bring life and a sense of the outdoors into any space. But in an apartment, you need low-maintenance options:

  • Air Plants and Succulents: These plants require minimal attention and add a modern touch without the need for a dedicated pot or planter.
  • Hanging Plants: Utilize wall and ceiling space with hanging planters to keep the floor clear and maximize space.
  • Faux Plants: If you're worried about keeping a living plant alive, there are many realistic options available today, from silk to 3D printed.

9. Add Texture With Soft Furnishings

Layering textures can make even the smallest apartment feel cozy and comfortable:

  • Throw Pillows: Mix and match textures and patterns to add interest to your seating areas.
  • Throws and Blankets: Drape them over sofas, chairs, or the ends of beds to add color and warmth.
  • Curtains and Rugs: Choose these soft furnishings to add a sense of luxury and absorb sound in your space.

10. Display Collections Creatively

If you collect items such as books, vinyl records, or vintage cameras, don't hide them away. Instead, use them as decor:

  • Book Stacks as Tables: Intersperse a few books in between larger, heavier items like vases or sculptures for an interesting side table.
  • Record Wall: Show off your collection by displaying it on a wall-mounted rack or in a framed grid.
  • Cameras as Art: Group vintage cameras on a shelf or use them as bookends to add a personal touch to your decor.

By implementing these hacks, you can create a stylish and inviting living space that reflects your personality—all while keeping your landlord happy. Remember to always review your lease and reach out for permission when in doubt about making changes to your apartment. After all, there's no harm in asking, and the worst that can happen is you get to know your landlord a little better. Ready to transform your apartment space without breaking the bank or the lease? Start applying these hacks and enjoy a more comfortable and personalized home. If you're looking for apartments in Columbia, SC, remember Otarre Pointe Apartments for a blend of comfort and convenience. Schedule a tour today and discover your new space!

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