By EMILY ESPOSITO  |  Special to Moonshine Ink

With spring in the air, now is the time to spruce up your rental for summer guests. A full remodel is not always necessary; some simple, small updates can make all the difference and make your guests feel comfortable and relaxed. Here are six ways to polish your rental on a budget.

1  |  Paint is an inexpensive way to update any space and make it feel fresh and clean. Changing a space from dark to light will make it feel more tranquil and spacious. Not only is paint great for walls, but it can also be used to update a piece of furniture, window trim, or the front door to welcome your new guests with a great first impression. For a healthier environment select paint that has low to no Volatile Organic Compounds, or VOCs. These are known to make a space smell harsh, but worse, can cause health issues like difficult breathing, asthma, headaches, skin irritations, and allergies.


2  |  Plants add a natural element and bring the outdoors in to make a space feel more grounded and connected to nature. Plus, many plants are safe for those that suffer from allergies, like aloe, bamboo, peace lilies, and orchids. Houseplants assist in purifying the air, which helps to boost healing, improve indoor air quality, and deter illnesses. Plants have been shown to reduce stress and aid focus — they absorb carbon dioxide from the air and release oxygen back out, which is calming to us humans.

3  |  Declutter, clean, and rearrange: This update is cost-free; it just requires a little work. If a room has too many items, it will feel confined, cluttered, and outdated. Simply rearrange furniture so it is easy to move around and create a cozy conversation area — the room will feel completely different. Remove pieces that are worn out and make the space feel dated and tired. Wash the windows and let the sunlight flow in! Natural daylight is the best way to brighten your home. It rejuvenates our senses and as a bonus, can help you save on energy bills.

4  |  Textiles like pillows, blankets, area rugs, and draperies add texture, color, and warmth to any space. Placing an area rug over hard floor surfaces will not only anchor your furnishings but also be comfortable for bare feet. Decorative pillows are another great way to add interest and depth to a sofa or chair. Providing a few layers of pillows with different textures will invite your guests to sit down, relax, and feel pampered. A cozy blanket encourages your guests to snuggle up with a good book and enjoy themselves.

5  |  Cabinet hardware — whether adding or replacing — is a cost-effective way to spruce up a space with a more contemporary style or a splash of fun. Attractive pulls or knobs put the finishing touch on your kitchen and bathrooms and invite your guests to use the space and make themselves at home.  

6  |  Art of any kind adds color and drama to any space, and make it feel complete, intriguing, and welcoming. The subject matter can be anything from a traditional landscape to an abstract to a breathtaking photograph that invites you to stand and observe for a while. When selecting art, be open to different types of mediums. For instance, paintings and photographs will generally add a larger spectrum of colors while sculptures will draw you more in to the interior by adding depth and visual interest. Books can also be turned into art by arranging them on bookshelves or coffee tables. Group and layer accessories in sets of three to five to visually balance a space and add more interest.

These six simple, cost-friendly tips to enliven your rental will add value without breaking the bank. Additionally, using neutral tones with pops of color, texture, and depth will draw your guests in and encourage them to kick off their shoes and hang out. A happy, healthy home is the place where anyone wants to stay. Spring forward with confidence and recharge your space with a little elbow grease!

~ Emily Esposito, Allied ASID, is the interior design manager at Vineyard Custom Homes. With a passion for green design, she looks to find ways to dream up stunning homes that work with nature, not fight against it.


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