Apartment Upgrades You Can Take With You When Your Lease Ends

cabinet and drawer knobs

When you live in a rental unit, there will undoubtedly be items you want to adjust to personalize your space. Since you don’t own your place, it can be a little tricky, but that doesn’t mean you can’t make upgrades here and there that will make your place feel more like you. Happily, there are a range of improvements you can take with you to your new home once your lease is up.

Replace the Waterworks

Swap your faucets and shower heads for a new look and better functionality. These upgrades come at a range of price points, from bargain to luxe.

To replace a faucet, find a new one that fits the configuration of your sink. To install, shut off the water valves under the sink and unscrew the nuts to the supply lines of the existing faucet, allowing you to remove it. Attach your new faucet, reconnect supply lines, and switch the valve back on.

As for your shower head, you likely only have to unscrew the one already in your shower (clean off the threads if you find remnants of old plumbing tape attached). Wrap some Teflon tape around the nozzle, then screw on the new head.

Shower head features also run the gamut, from a range of spray options to wider coverage to self-cleaning capabilities. Consider switching to a shower head that conserves water to cut down your utility bill and do something good for the planet.

glass sink faucet

Enhance Your Lighting

If you replace the light bulbs that come with your apartment with smart bulbs for a more automated home, your new improved lighting solution will be yours to keep when you leave. Lights can add quite a bit of personality to any space, especially with the wide variety of color temperatures available today, so this little change can make a majoy impact.

If you go as far as changing out the fixtures themselves, start by switching off the power (as you should always do when for projects involving wiring). Remove the old fixture by taking off the cover, then gently twisting the wire connectors to disconnect them.

You may also need to remove the base or trim from the old fixture at this point. Check that the electrical box connecting the fixture is tight. If it's not, give the screws a few turns to secure it.

Connect the wires to your new fixture per the manufacturer’s instructions, and tuck away the wires into the electrical box or base of the fixture. Attach the base to the electrical box.

Pay attention to the recommended wattage on the fixture when you add new bulbs. When everything is reattached, turn the power back on.

brown natural looking shades

Adjust Window Accessories

Many rentals come equipped with cheap looking window trappings, so you can add some personality to your rental’s windows with upgraded blinds or drapes—easy to bring with you once your lease draws to a close

Install pretty roman shades for an elegant look that can be easily spiced up in a bold color or design. When you’re ready to move out, simply put the original blinds back and pack up your personal shades for your next place.

Change the Hardware

The cabinet door knobs and drawer pulls in the kitchen of your rental are likely pretty basic. To add some personality to the space, swap it out! Be sure to put all the original hardware in a safe place once it’s off.