This being the beginning of a new year, I’ve come across many resolution lists geared towards personal growth. As I thought about my journey as a renter which is about to come to an end (thank you Lord!), I came up with the list below, geared towards decorating your rental even as you gear towards home ownership.
1. Start saving towards home ownership
There’s never a better time to start saving towards owning your home than now. If you want to go down the home construction route but are discouraged by land prices, identify schemes like Daykio that allow you to pay for a parcel of land in instalments. You can also consider saving with HF Group’s 1st HOP account, an exciting product that is uniquely designed for the Kenyan who desires to save for a home and maybe also get mortgage financing later on.
2. Add green to your space
Adding some green inside your home is a very good thing because plants help clean the air and provide more oxygen.Also, plants are a great way to spruce up your space on a budget, and you can easily move with them from home to home. You can add green to your space by introducing hanging gardens on your balcony, indoor potted plants, or even grow your spinach and skuma wikii (kales) in sacks. Succulents are also a favourite as they are easy to maintain.
3. Declutter your home
Clutter can easily make even the most spacious of homes feel small and claustrophobic. To avoid accumulating stuff that you don’t need, try and declutter at least three times a year. You can give out things that you do not use but that are in good condition to charity, or even sell them off to earn money to be able to purchase something that you really need to spruce up your space!
Invest in plastic storage baskets to help you organise the small items (for bargain finds, go to Kamukunji) or make your own using discarded cardboard boxes as seen in this tutorial.
4. Personalise your space
Your tenancy agreement may not allow you to undertake any major changes to your space but that doesn’t mean you can’t put your signature style on your rental! If you can’t repaint the walls, add splashes of colour with your furniture and accessories. Simple changes like new cushion covers for your throws, area rugs, floor vases and artwork can communicate your style and are easy to pack up when you move house.
For other major changes that may touch on the structure of the house e.g. adding open shelving in a kitchen, try and get a written consent from your landlord clearly outlining the terms. This will ensure that you are not at risk of forfeiting your deposit.
5. Invest in good furniture
Just because you are still living in a rented space doesn’t mean you have to buy poor quality furniture! I believe in buying with the future in mind. You would rather invest in quality pieces (even if it means buying second-hand furniture so as not to break the bank), as they have a resale value should you find they don’t work with the home you eventually end up owning.
This is by no means an exhaustive list; feel free to share any other decorating goals you have in mind for your space in 2017.