7 High-Impact Kitchen Upgrades Even Renters Can Try
Stick on a new backsplash
Change up your counters (yes, really)
Get crafty with chalk
While Heather Bien’s former apartment came equipped with a built-in chalkboard wall in the kitchen area, she knew she wanted it to be part of her decor. Pretty lettering makes it a feature. When it’s time to erase and start anew, Heather mixes white vinegar and water, then scrubs the wall with a sponge to fully remove the chalk residue. No chalkboard wall of your own? You can paint one, if your lease allows.
Be creative with space
You may not be able to tear down walls in your rental, but here’s a clever tip from Pamela of The Gem Picker: She hung a small shelf above her radiator to make use of the once-useless space. As a bonus, the radiator gets a bit of camouflage, too.
Swap out the hardware
Changing out the knobs in a kitchen is a pretty simple task that will make a big impact—but what if your cabinets don’t have any in the first place? Shelley Westerman of Crazy Wonderful demonstrates how to add knobs to knobless kitchen cabinets without picking up a drill. Her secret: Command Strips. How’s that for a rental-friendly hack?
Bust out the stencils
Barbara Matson of Markova Design majorly made over her rental kitchen as part of a past One Room Challenge. We’re totally up to copy her stenciled backsplash—if your landlord allows you to paint your walls, why not go the extra mile and add a cool pattern like the one Barbara DIY’d?
Go big with art
Don’t forget: Kitchens are rooms, too! Hanging big, look-at-me art adds a lot of character to an otherwise utilitarian space. For inspiration, check out this kitchen from Ellenor of An Edited Lifestyle. And psst: The “marble” counters are contact paper, and Ellenor added in the glam gold knobs herself. Talk about little touches with big impact!