1. Door handles & doors
Most door handles are easily removable, which means there’s no need to put up with unattractive door, cupboard or cabinet handles. Most hardware stores will have a decent range of handles, so you can simply take the old ones in for sizing and replace them with stylish new ones.
Replacing door handles is a damage-free way to give a room a new look. Picture: Getty Images
The same applies to sliding doors – if there’s an oppressive, chunky wooden sliding door in your lounge room that you really don’t like, just replace it with something more to your liking. Most sliding door rails are a standard size, so you should be able to slip a new door in easily and store the old one in the garage until you move out.
2. Curtains & blinds
One of the quickest and most cost-effective ways to update a rental is to buy modern curtains and blinds. If your window sizes are a standard size, you can purchase ready-made blinds and curtains that will fit perfectly; just remember to store the old ones until you move out. You can even take the blinds to your next house, provided the windows are also of standard size.
3. Tension shelves & rods
Tension shelves and rods are a renter’s dream, particularly in small apartments. They’re held in place with pressure, which means you can have extra storage, racks and rails without damaging the walls. You can also take them with you leave.
4. Leaning shelves
Check out Danish or Swedish design stores for clever shelving options. As leaning shelves will only touch a small portion of the wall, they’re perfect for properties with strict requirements about damage – the less the furniture touches the walls, the less damage there will be.
The less the furniture touches the walls, the less damage there will be.
5. Lighting fixtures
Ugly light shades and fixtures can diminish the decor of your home, but thankfully they’re really easy to replace. Look online for vintage designer fixtures or visit a lighting store for something more modern. Again, make sure you hang on to the old fixtures so you can restore the property to its original form before you move out.
Light fixtures can make a drab room more fab. Picture: Getty Images
6. Temporary wallpaper
There are many innovative design companies that have developed removable wallpaper options. Some wallpapers are in the form of adhesive stickers, while others are designed to be glue-free and simply hang from the ceiling.
There are also a few companies that are working with washable wall colours – you simply paint the colour of your choice onto the walls and wash it off before you move out. Ask a professional at your local hardware store to see what’s available in your area.
Paint your chosen colour onto the walls and wash it off before you move.
7. Drawer liners
If your house comes with built-in storage, you might want to do a little renovation on the drawers and cupboards. Give them a good clean, scatter some fresh mothballs around and put pretty drawer liners in. They’ll give you a lovely clean place to store your clothes and you can simply throw the liners away when you leave.
8. Click-together flooring
Click-together floorboards can give a room a whole new look. Picture: Getty Images
If you can’t stand looking at the brown-and-orange-swirled lino in your rental kitchen any longer, you might want to consider click-together flooring. Most hardware stores stock different brands and styles of this miracle product, and it really is as easy as it sounds – you just click the tiles or slats together to totally change the flooring in your home. This is another genius renovation option that you can take with you when you move house.
Click-together flooring is another genius renovation option.
Read more: 9 ways to spruce up a rental kitchen
9. Adhesive hooks
Adhesive hooks can be used to hang art, mount small shelves and create storage solutions without damaging the walls, making them essential for renters. Pro tip: buy a respected brand that has positive reviews. Also make sure that you follow the instructions – if they say to wait three hours before hanging your picture, wait three hours.
Note: Make sure you get the landlord’s permission before making any alterations. Most landlords won’t mind but it’s always safe to check.