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Deposit-friendly paint ideas for rentals

From the Resene decorating blog

Thanks to the beauty of paint, there are easy ways you can update the property you’re renting without damaging the relationship between you and your landlord.

Renting can be tricky – on the one hand, you want to make the house your own. On the other, it isn’t yours to amend too drastically. A trip to your Resene ColorShop to purchase some testpots will enable you to make a difference to your rental, allowing you to make the house more of a home through colour and personality.

Adding personality to a hobby room

A pale pink base for a house plant

Hobby room: A coloured ladder, chair, freestanding desk and easy-to-remove shelf add personality to a rental without changing the space drastically. This hobby room features a desk in Resene Bitter, chair in Resene Smokescreen, ladder and tall shaped vased in Resene Lusty, 3-drawer storage box in Resene Smokescreen, Resene Bitter, Resene Twine and Resene Dust Storm, desk organiser in Resene Dust Storm. The wall and floor is in Resene Rice Cake, lower circle and floating shelf in Resene Dust Storm and large circle in Resene Twine. Project by Vanessa Nouwens, image by Wendy Fenwick.  Plant: Resene Spring Fever brings a zesty energy to this white-walled room. The pale pink base in Resene Soothe is a gentle counterpart. Wall and window frame in Resene Double Alabaster, floor in Resene Half Blanc, art canvas in Resene Soothe and Resene Spring Fever. Project by Leigh Stockton, image by Bryce Carleton.

There are many parts to a room you can paint without making unwanted changes: a wooden chair, freestanding desk, rubbish bin in another. Don’t forget about bases and plant pots, they’re so easy to paint and can have a pleasing impact!

If you have a pile of forgotten vintage plates, why not paint them in a trio of beautiful hues and hang them on the wall? Choose two similar colours and a third one that will pop! Apply a coat of Resene Smooth Surface Sealer to each plate, and once dry paint each dish in two coats of your favourite colour. Attach plate hangers at the back and hang on your wall. You can easily take them with you when you depart the rental.

Start with furniture. Get colourful and creative, painting your chairs all in one hue or alternate them in complementary colours. You can even paint the kitchen table to match, ensuring all items harmonise in colour. Grab a drop cloth to protect the carpet or floorboards and get to work. The same applies to any chairs or tables you have outside. If its the warmer season in which you’ll be spending more time outdoors, why not make it an attractive place to socialise?

Decorated vintage plates

Decorate vintage plates in your favourite hues; they can make a statement in a room without you having to paint all four walls. Plates featured have been painted in Resene Amulet, Resene Pale Leaf, Resene Norway, Resene Rice Cake, Resene Lola, Resene Butterfly, Resene Antidote and Resene Highland. The main wall is in Resene Eighth Fossil, the middle wall is in Resene Norway, the floor is in Resene Quarter Fossil, cabinets in Resene Norway with inner door panels in Resene Rice Cake, dining table in Resene Highland, rattan armchairs in Resene Pale Leaf, vase on books in Resene Highland, jug with leaves in Resene Pale Leaf and ribbed planter and small dish in Resene Lola. Project by Vanessa Nouwens, image by Bryce Carleton.

Paint your plant pots in gorgeous summery hues and replant them with flowers to match. Scattered at your front door they’ll make a warm welcoming for any guests, and you can always take them with you when you leave the rental.

If you have any freestanding shelves of your own in the house, paint them to tie in with your home’s décor. Bring in cushions and lampshades that provide an additional element of colour continuity, and that aren’t part of the home’s structure. Paint your mirror trims, photo frames or a coat hook in your favourite colour using Resene testpots. A freestanding screen is another way of layering your accents, and by painting it you can bring in more colour, changing it with the seasons or when you’re ready for a change. Combine your favourite frames and create a beautiful gallery wall as a feature.

“Upcycling treasures is an all-time love of mine,” says Laura Heynike, director of Pocketspace Interiors. “Did you know you can choose any Resene colour and turn it into your own spray paint? This is a good hack if you want an evenly applied finish when painting furniture without streaks. Just remember, you don’t have to be conservative on choosing colour, you can always repaint it next season! Have some fun and create your own curated collection.” To create a spray paint of your Resene colour, use a Colorpak mini spray pack, pour in your Resene colour and spray away. It’s ideal for small areas.

A pink and white outdoor living space

If you have a large rattan pendant that hangs over the dining table, bring it to life in a beautiful hue or a crisp white for a coastal feel. Your table lampshades can also have a coat of paint to tie in with your décor.

“When you are painting furniture, just check what the current surface is as you may need to sand or seal it before painting with Resene Enamacryl for a durable finish.” For a matte finish, use Karen Walker Chalk Colour paints and waxes for a beautiful aged look.

Instead of colour blocking, we are accenting features like a handle and the legs, Laura says, or making the drawer fronts different colour to the main unit. “Bookcases or wood boxes to hang on walls is a great way to bring in some colours into your rental. Alternate the colours for an eclectic look or keep it monochrome for a chilled style.”

Jay Sharples, Technical Expert at Resene, says multiple DIY projects can spruce up your rental space. Some of these include repainting picture frames with Resene testpots to painting panels with Resene FX Faux Rust Effect. “The Resene website has an inspiration section, which can help with ideas for all around your property,” he says. “You can also email Resene with pictures and a write up of your project to help others in the future.”

A stylish storage box

Keep all those bits and bobs you use with your barbecue in one stylish box. This one oozes a summery seaside feel with coastal blues in varying tones. Sides: Resene Aqua, Side panels/base: Resene Edgewater and dowel: Resene Maestro. Project by Leigh Stockton, image by Bryce Carleton.

While your landlord may not be keen on your painting an entire room, he may be happy with you painting on a small mural on a wall. Decide on your design direction for your room, ensuring colours will all complement each other. To create a circular mural, we recommend using the pencil, string and drawing pin method to design your ideal circle.

Your landlord may thank you if you offer to give the kitchen cabinetry a coat of new paint. Stay safe and stick with a versatile neutral and, of course, seek written permission first. If the kitchen is old and tired, you could be saving your landlord a task.

Another way you can bring in colour to your kitchen is with a homemade, colourful pegboard. Hang it from the wall for those to-do lists, photographs and concert tickets. Why not create your own art using Resene testpots? Buy a canvas and paint with colours that blend with your interior. You might surprise yourself with what you create! And don’t forget how plenty of plants, new towels, soft rugs and coloured cushions can enhance your rental with modern comfort. These are all easily transportable when you move out.

Remember, you can always refer to your tenancy agreement and ask your landlord what you can paint. If you have permission to paint the walls, it's advisable to get that in writing, signed by both parties. But there’s no harm in asking! It can be well worth the effort if it means living in a house or apartment that suits your personal style and thus you enjoy more, especially if you plan to stay a while.

October 30, 2020

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