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What do you do when you’ve just moved into your new rented accommodation and you find the interior decor is, to put a finer word on it, ghastly? You’re going to be living there for six months or maybe even a few years. Which ever country you’re in, there are a few small things you can do on a tight budget to spruce up the interior living space without drawing the ire of your landlord. You especially don’t want to get on the wrong side of a German landlady!

Don’t worry, these simple steps will offer you guidance and inspiration to transform your new abode.

The Walls – If you are allowed to paint your walls or wallpaper them, then that’s half the battle won. However, let’s consider that you cannot. In this case you should think about large-scale canvases with bold blocks of color in a Mark Rothko style. Or you can buy large frameworks reasonably cheaply and cover with wallpaper, then attach these to the walls. Have a look at large fabric drapes and rugs which can also be used as wall decoration.

You can find some great choices for wall decoration here:

The Furniture – Moving into a rented house or apartment with no furniture means you can take or buy your own without the problems of having to live with a landlord’s ugly furnishings. If, on the other hand, you move into furnished accommodation and have the misfortune to come across furniture which is not to your liking, then don’t panic.

First of all, see if moving the disliked furniture about and to different rooms eases the visual eyesores. By thinking laterally you can often transform the look of a space with minimal effort and cost. When this is an impossibility or doesn’t improve the spectacle, then you best bet is to find attractive fabric coverings that you can adorn the sofas, chairs and tables with.

If the furniture is worn and tired then consider talking to your landlord about painting the items which will improve your surroundings and also be a free improvement for the owner.

The Lighting – This part is easy to adapt to your tastes. If you don’t like the ceiling lights or overhead shades, then taken them down and store safely away in the storage facility until you leave. There are so many lampshade choices out there on the market, which means you’ll eventually find something that will compliment the interior spaces in your new rented accommodation.

Take a look at this website that sells some great contemporary lighting.

The Floors – There is not much you can do to change the existing flooring in rented accommodation. You can however buy some mats and rugs of varying sizes to place over the offending flooring material. This is probably wise anyway if you have small children or pets who are likely to drop a lot of messy things on the floor.

Flowers – Beautiful blooms can be placed in any type of interior theme or location. With a little careful thought, they can enhance a room dramatically. However, constantly buying flowers can be expensive and if you don’t have money to spare, it can be a let down. This is where glass and recycled materials come into play.

Colored glass jars, vases and even empty coke bottles can provide a colorful alternative to flowers during the winter months. In spring and summer, if you live in a rural place, you can pick wild flowers from your local area. Think about making your own paper decorations as well that you can hang over the windows or shape into flower heads.

If you want to buy other people’s home-made art work then check out Etsy.

This goes for general decorative items as well. Be creative, this is the key. When I was at Art School, a friend of mine built a globe-shaped lampshade out of around 70 polystyrene canteen cups. You’d be surprised, but this creation looked stunning! If you like comics, then create a table top out of the pages and cover with a protective casing. The options are endless.