3 Reno-Free Ways to Make Your Ho Hum Rental Cabinets Really Wow

3 Reno-Free Ways to Make Your Ho Hum Rental Cabinets Really Wow

Jennifer Hunter
Jul 8, 2015

No matter where you move, the cabinets in your rental are always depressingly similar: dated oak-colored monstrosities, oddly ugly pulls. But hey, you're renting so what can you do? A lot. Try these three things; they're all reversible so you can live happily while you're there and still get your deposit back when it's time to move on.

Easy — Ditch the doors

If you hate the look of your cabinet doors then remove them! Easy as pie. Open shelving upkeep is a little extra organizational work but you'll be showing off your own cute taste rather than looking at your landlord's ugly bargain cabinet buy. Even if you choose to only open up a section or two (like above), it can make a big difference in the overall feel of your kitchen. Don't forget to replace those doors when you hand in your notice.

Medium effort— Procure your own pulls

Yes, Halle & Jeff already have gorgeous cabinets in their East Village apartment, but imagine if their pulls were stand-out ugly! It would ruin the whole effect. Little details can make a big difference so if your cabinet doors are even halfway decent, try replacing the pulls first. You may find that a small hardware investment saves you years of ugly-house headaches.

Hard (but still not that bad) — Paint it up

If you're stuck with ugly painted cabinets already then you might as well take them from rental beige to a color you actually like. You can cut your work in half if you choose to only address either the lower OR the upper set (like Lauren did). Adding any amount of color will perk up the whole space (and you'll have less to undo later). Remember, painting wood is a-ok in our book, but don't go there unless you have a landlord's okay.

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