DIY Apartment Projects
Your apartment is your home, and although you’re renting it, there are still ways to make it your own. Since there are usually restrictions in place that forbid renters from painting or making other major updates to your apartment, knowing where to start personalizing your home can be tricky.
One way to add some personal flair to your apartment is through do it yourself (DIY) projects. These projects are often cost-efficient and an effective way to save up for a house, while still giving your apartment that personal touch to make it feel more like home!
Whether you’ve just moved in or you’re a long-time renter ready to makes some changes, check out our tips and ideas for enhancing your apartment through DIY projects. Just know that you’ll need enough space, tools (or access to a workshop) and a little elbow grease to take on some of these projects.
How to Upgrade Your Apartment
Before you start any DIY project, big or small, it’s best to first double check with your landlord and lease. Read through your lease with a fine-tooth comb to make sure there aren’t any restrictions or rules against specific updates or changes. Reach out to your landlord and explain the projects you want to work on, especially if you’re unsure whether you can in your apartment. You might get approval to start your projects right away!
Apartment Upgrades for Your Living Space
There are many ways to make your apartment’s living room feel more comfortable and relaxing. Try taking on these DIY projects to add more life to your living space:
Paint some of your furniture
That boring colored end table or cabinet you have can really pop if you give it a fresh coat of paint. Choose a new color that goes with your apartment’s walls for some matching flair, or just choose a brighter, bolder hue. Following a how-to guide for beginners is a good place to start so you can learn the entire process and what type of paint, primer and topcoat to buy.
Reupholster an old chair
Is one of your favorite chairs also worn-out or falling apart? Don’t throw it out just yet — consider reupholstering it. This is the process of removing a piece of furniture’s old fabric and putting on new fabric, meaning lots of potential for personalizing an old piece of furniture and making it look brand new. The materials you’ll need won’t be too expensive, but you may want to invest in a nice pneumatic stapler. This guide can help you through the reupholstering process.
Try removable wallpaper
You may not be able to paint your apartment’s walls, but there’s still a way to give them a different color or personality. Removable wallpaper comes in a variety of colors and patterns and sticks to your walls with a reusable adhesive. That means you can try a color or pattern out, and if you don’t like it, easily pull it down and try another.
Don’t want to take on a big project? Here are a few easy things you can add to your living space to really brighten it up and give it character:
- Hang up some art
- Cover old hardwood floors with a rug
- Get a new window treatment
Apartment DIY Updates for Your Kitchen
Even if your apartment’s kitchen area has old or outdated appliances, there’s still ways to make it look new and unique. Take a look at these DIY kitchen projects:
Grow your own herbs
Literally spice up your kitchen by growing an herb garden. Herbs like basil, parsley and rosemary can thrive when grown indoors, just make sure to keep them near a window to maximize the sunlight they’ll need. Check out more tips for growing a garden in your apartment.
Use a temporary, stick-on backsplash
Backsplash is a great way to add style to your kitchen’s walls. However, crafting a backsplash using caulk may not be allowed in your apartment. That’s where stick-on tiles come in handy. Simply peel and stick these tiles wherever you want and pull them off when your lease is up.
Remove some cabinet doors
You’ll definitely need your landlord’s approval for this one, but opting to forgo your cabinet doors can make your kitchen look more open and vibrant. Removing the hinges on your cabinets shouldn’t take too long and will only require a drill or screwdriver. And if you’re not feeling it, simply screw the doors back into place.
Try these quick additions if you want to further upgrade your apartment’s kitchen:
- Reorganize your kitchen to create more space
- Cover countertops with contact paper
- Build a wine rack
Apartment Projects for Your Bathroom
You may not think there are many ways to update your bathroom, but just a few minor changes can make it look cleaner and more modern.
Deep clean stained grout
Grout stains are an often-neglected bathroom menace, especially in apartments. Make your tile bathroom floor shine like new by taking baking soda and a toothbrush to your grout. Give it a good scrub, and you’ll be surprised by how much better it looks. Check out this guide for more tips on eliminating grout stains.
Make your own towel hook
There are a lot of creative ways to hang up your towel and let it dry. With some wood and screws, you’ll have trendy new towel hooks in no time. Here’s how you can make your own DIY wooden towel hooks. Don’t forget to pick up waterproof wood finish!
Get a new shower head
This is another one you’ll want to check with your landlord on, but a new shower head can make a huge difference. Do a little research and find one that has the features you want, and if possible, go for a more efficient model to potentially reduce your water bill. If you invest in a head you really love, bring it with you to your next home. Just remember to attach the original shower head before you leave.
There are a few quick ways to update your bathroom’s look too:
- Pick out a bold and colorful shower curtain
- Cover old tiles with bathmats
- Update the light fixtures
DIY Apartment Projects for Your Bedroom
Make your bedroom a cozier and more comfortable place to sleep with these DIY projects:
Build your own nightstand
Building your own nightstand is a great alternative to buying one. This way you’ll have a lot of freedom in deciding the nightstand’s design, especially its height and number of shelves. You’ll need hardware, so be sure to pick up enough wood, nails and stain. Here are 15 DIY nightstand designs to consider.
Try a ceiling medallion decal
Make that boring light fixture or fan on your ceiling more eye-catching with a medallion decal. Like removable wallpaper, simply peel and press these decals onto your ceiling to instantly make it more visually appealing. They’re removable too, so take it down and try another design if you’d like.
Make your own throw pillow
A throw pillow can really make your bed or chair pop, especially if you make your own. There’s lots of different materials and designs to choose from, like using an old t-shirt as fabric or decorating with old buttons. Check out these 30 DIY accent pillows for inspiration.
Here are some other things to give your bedroom a makeover:
- Add a mirror to make the space look bigger
- Choose a headboard as a statement piece
- Invest in quality bedding
Make Sure Your Apartment Is Protected
No matter what apartment DIY project you choose to take on, it’s important to make sure that your belongings are protected from the unexpected. Renters insurance can help cover your belongings if they’re damaged or stolen. Learn more about the benefits of having renters insurance and how it can help protect what matters most.