Redecorating rented accommodation – a guide

If you are one of the increased number of people who have ended up staying in rented accommodation instead of buying your own place, you might wonder how much you can personalize your home to suit your tastes.After all, you are living in a property that is owned by your landlord, and you will always have to bear in mind that what you find appealing might not suit everyone. And, of course, your landlord will always be thinking about when he’ll have to find new tenants.

Home DecoratingBut that doesn’t mean redecorating is off the cards by any means. Here are some tips on how redecorate in rented accommodation:

Ask your landlord

It may sound obvious, but the majority of disputes from redecorating come when the tenant makes changes to a property without asking their landlord first. Remember, it may be your home, but the house is theirs.

More often than not though, your landlord will be glad of the chance to see some improvements made to your flat for free (or cheap, if you can persuade them to pay for the materials off your rent bill). Reassure them that you know what you are doing, and communicate every change you intend to make.

Get your landlord’s permission in writing

Beyond just making sure that your landlord is on board with what you intend to do, make sure that you can prove they are. If your landlord takes your deposit off you and it is lodged with a sponsored deposit scheme, the case will go to an independent adjudicator who will assess whether your renovation was permitted by your landlord. If you can prove that it was, the case will be far simpler.

Be flexible

If you’re living on a rolling contract or short term lease, your landlord has no guarantee that you are invested in the property. Long term leases will convince them that you intend to stay for longer, which will make your request to redecorate a lot more appealing – after all, they don’t want to have to seek new tenants, even if you’ve made the flat more enticing.

Proving to your landlord that you want to live in your flat for a long time, and that you are going to look after your property, will make them all the more likely to get on board with your vision for how the flat should look.

Know the law

If things do go awry (which they shouldn’t), chances are your landlord will attempt to take recompense from your deposit. Ensure that your deposit is kept with one of the government sponsored deposit schemes, and read up on what is acceptable work and what is unacceptable.

If you’re repairing any structure in your flat or any appliance owned by your landlord, check what you are allowed to do and what your landlord should do by law.

Author Bio: Patrick Foot is a blog writer for, the largest marketplace for lettings and letting agent organisation in Scotland.