Sometimes when you rent a place, it’s hard to feel at home. You’re more concerned with preserving your security deposit than settling in and making the place your own.
But that ends here!
Don’t spend your time in your apartment just waiting to move on to the next place. Take these seven essential steps to make your apartment feel like home so you can enjoy it as long as you’ve got it.
1. Unpack Your Stuff
This is the first and probably the most crucial step.
Get all your stuff out of those moving boxes and into your apartment where it belongs. Everything needs a proper home so that you feel more like you’re at home as you go about your day.
Searching through boxes for your stuff is sure to make that temporary feeling linger.
Take your time and go one room at a time but make unpacking a priority. Start with your bedroom, so you have somewhere to escape when you start feeling stressed or overwhelmed by the move.
Make your bed, put up your curtains, and put your favorite stuff away.
Once you have everything out of boxes and set up, you’ll feel like you own the place, whether you actually do or not.
2. Get Everything Clean
Even if the complex cleaned the apartment before you moved in, it’s a good idea to have your own deep cleaning session of your new home. The time you spend cleaning will help you get familiar with every nook and cranny of your apartment.
Cleaning up gives you the perfect opportunity to organize all your stuff and find places to put everything.
The more organized your apartment is, the easier it is to actually live in.
Make sure you’re moving junk out of the way while you clean. Things like empty boxes and paint cans just sitting around don’t instill a sense of home at all. Get rid of all the trash as soon as you can, so it’s just you and your stuff.
3. Pick a Paint Color
The color of the walls can dramatically affect the mood of a room. Colors play with your emotions, making you feel energized, calm, and even hungry!
Pick a paint color you like for your apartment walls and throw it up there. Or use a bold color to create an accent wall. One wall painted a different color from all the rest is the perfect place to put your couch or your bed’s headboard.
If you can’t paint the walls, there are other ways to add color on top of the existing paint (in case you aren’t a fan of it).
For example, you can create a gallery wall full of art or photographs.
Or try one of these unique ideas:
- Cover the wall in fabric pieces
- Use wall decals
- Get some removable wallpaper to cover one or all your walls
- Hang up a dramatic piece of art or a large mirror
4. Introduce Your Favorite Scents
Your brain remembers smells more than anything else that your senses pick up. If you start incorporating your favorite smells into your apartment, it will feel more like home to you in no time!
Bring your favorite or most familiar scents into your apartment as soon as you can, especially in your bedroom.
There are all kinds of ways to change the smell of your apartment quickly. Candles, incense, diffusers, room spray, or even plants that give off a strong smell can all help bring a scent you associate with home to your new place.
5. Decorate With Your Style
As you go through the process of setting your stuff up, make sure you add in decor that goes with your sense of style. Decorating your apartment will really bring in the little details to seal the deal.
And we all know it’s the little things that count, right?
Bring in light sources to make the rooms brighter and more inviting from the start. Use colors you love in your decor. Add throw pillows, blankets, and an area rug to make your apartment cozier.
Don’t forget to add in those sentimental pieces for their comfort value.
Nothing says home like the things you care the most about.
6. Make Yourself a Meal
Now that the entire place is set up, it’s time to act like you’re truly at home.
Food is a great way to make yourself feel better and more relaxed in such a new environment. Just make sure you have all the kitchen essentials you need in your pantry first!
Making a meal will help you get super familiar with your new kitchen and settle into your apartment at the same time.
Don’t worry if you’re not a pro at cooking.
Your first meal doesn’t have to be anything fancy, as long as it’s something you love.
7. Go Exploring
Your apartment will never feel like home if you don’t feel comfortable in the surrounding area as well. Wherever you’re living is now your home. It’s your place of residence just as much as the apartment itself.
So get out and walk around your neighborhood a little bit!
Go to the local shops, attend community events, and say hello to your neighbors. When you make yourself an active member of the community and start to love the place you live, there’s no doubt you’ll feel right at home.
No matter how much you love a place at first sight, settling in takes some time. You’re not going to feel like you’re sleeping at home on your first night there, but you can get to that point as fast as possible with these steps.
Don’t put off your homecoming any longer than you have to.
All it takes is seven simple steps to take your apartment from a temporary stop to home sweet home.
Adam Marshall is a freelance writer who specializes in all things apartment organization, real estate, and college advice. He currently works with Traverse Commons to help them with their online marketing.