So many of us in the UAE are both living away from our home country and renting the roof over our head. This sense of impermanence, the effort and cost involved in decorating a rental property, paired with concerns about damage deposits, often result in people feeling unable to put their personal stamp on the place they live.
However, here at Home Club we believe that there are plenty of landlord-friendly and affordable ways to make any four walls (however temporary they may be) feel like home. We have enlisted the help of our go to ‘Interior Styling’ expert Ash Young, of Adore Décor DXB, to give you her top tips on how to make a rental home your ‘own’.
Work With What You’ve Got
Hey Homies, Ash here! My first nugget of styling wisdom is ‘to work with what you’ve got’; style your existing furniture with accessories that reflect your taste and make you smile. Add cushions and throws to your sofa and bed, use bookcases, sideboards and coffee tables as surfaces to display personal items and photos. Zara Home and Masions du Monde both have a wide selection of beautiful ‘objects’ should you think about expanding your collection.
Soften The Space
Next Up: soften the space with large rugs and window dressings (we love Ikea for affordability and style) and make sure to cover ceiling bulbs – bare ones aren’t going to convince anyone that you’re going for the industrial look! Greenery is game changing in terms of adding ‘life’ to a space, even if you’re not ready for real plant parenthood and prefer to buy artificial. Home Centre and Dragon Mart have some real beauties that are easy on the eye as well as the wallet.
Future Proof your Spends
If you’re buying new furniture, try to future-proof by spending your money on pieces that could work elsewhere should you move: Sectional Sofas are a great buy, which can be reconfigured if your next living room is a different shape. And yes, that super king, four-poster bed might be fabulous, but what happens if you have to downsize your bedroom? If you want to splurge on statement pieces, then stick to items such as accent chairs that can easily move with you, thereby saving the emotional and financial pain of them not fitting into your next home.
Add Temporary Colour
Nothing beats paint for transforming empty walls. If your landlord allows it, you may well be able to banish the ubiquitous Dubai magnolia in favour of fresh white, versatile grey or even a few accent walls in your favourite colour. Art is a great way of adding personality to your home, but hanging it often involves damage to walls. Try using picture ledges to minimise the number of holes you have to fill when you leave, or avoid nails altogether with adhesive picture hanging strips. Another temporary way to add that Wow! Factor to your walls is with removable wallpaper or wall stickers available from Paper Pop and E-Walls Studio.
Wrap it Up
I think we can all agree that there has been something of a taste bypass when it comes to many kitchens and bathrooms in the UAE! If you really can’t live with yours, then help is at hand from the clever people at Creative Wrap Solutions. They can literally wrap your kitchen, bathroom, staircase or doors, giving your home a completely different look. Best of all, it can be removed when you leave without causing any damage to the original surfaces.
Thanks Ash! So there you have it, some simple and easy tips on making your rental home your own. We would love to see how you’ve repurposed your rental into your very own cosy space, tag us on Instagram @homeclubme.