5 Things to Keep in Mind When Decorating a New Apartment

Apartment residents who are eager to learn some tips on how to decorate a new apartment.

If you just moved into a brand new apartment, you’re about to get a new lease on life (quite literally).

Think of your apartment as a blank canvas. It’s waiting for you with its arms wide open to enhance it and show off your personality! But before jumping into switching up space, there are a few things to keep in mind. For starters, check with the leasing office to find out what’s allowed.

On top of that, figure out a budget. If you’re a student who’s juggling loans and school expenses, you might need to cut back on decor elements. Despite that, it doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of creative ways to embellish an apartment.

So, are you ready to decorate to your heart’s content?

We’ll go over the 5 things you need to keep in mind when decorating your new apartment. Then you can decide on a style and focus on transforming your new home into a place that fits your lifestyle and needs!

Let’s get you started.

1. Find out what’s allowed

First thing’s first. When you move into a new apartment, the management company already has rules in place. The rules tell you what kind of changes you’re allowed to make.

If you haven’t asked what your limitations are, make an appointment with a manager at the leasing office. They’ll be able to give you the rundown on what is allowed and what isn’t. Keep your security deposit in the back of your mind. If the changes you want to make are allowed but still could jeopardize your security deposit, you may want to rethink projects.

For example, putting nails in the wall might be okay as long as you patch them up before you move out. But you can protect your deposit by using removable adhesives that won’t damage the walls.

If you’re allowed to paint the walls, they may require you to revert them to their original color before moving. Changing things back to their original form is no easy feat in an apartment. So, if you paint a wall a dark shade of blue, for example, it’s going to be challenging getting it back to an off-white color.

Here are ways to embellish your space without damaging the walls:

Make sure you know how much effort it’s going to take to switch things back before venturing to make significant changes. Some modifications are a lot harder to undo or fix than you may think.

2. Set a budget

It’s hard to know how to decorate if you don’t have a set budget in mind. You may have some lofty decorating ideas. However, when you start adding things up, you discover it’s just not feasible.

To stick to a budget, you first must set one. Write down the necessities and what’s most important — such items that are functional (more on this next).

Of course, you can’t do without a desk, chair, sofa, and other furniture essentials. Beyond that, think of different ways to creatively decorate your space.

You don’t have to spend a lot of money to make that happen. Use what you have and if needed, check out consignment stores and the like. You never know what you might find in the most unexpected places.

It may take some time for everything to come together and that’s okay. Try to stick to your budget.

If you have any money left over, maybe you can splurge on that expensive globe that shows off your love of travel!

3. Come up with a functional strategy

If you’re busy with work or school, you may not be spending that much time inside your apartment.

As opposed to going all out when you decorate, it may make more sense to focus on developing a functional strategy.

To explain, this sort of style means strategically placing furniture and objects. The idea is to come up with a practical arrangement that makes it easy for you to find things. Focus on placing items where you need them while still making each interior aesthetically pleasing.

Here are a few examples of functional pieces you can place throughout the apartment:

4. Decorate to fit your lifestyle

Similar to focusing on a functional style, there are other ways to garnish interiors that’ll fit your lifestyle. Your goal may be to stay focused on an apartment with calming elements that promote productivity.

There are a few adornments you can add to achieve this like plants and appropriate lighting.


Bring life to your apartment by incorporating plants.

In a study by the Journal of Environmental Psychology, researchers found that people who are in an environment with plants pay better attention to their work.

They also experience less fatigue! If you’re a busy student, this is exactly what you need to stay on task.

Plus, plants are so calming and inviting. They are the perfect apartment companions!

Natural Light:

If you want to stay focused, take advantage of natural light! Experts reveal that natural light can decrease depression and improve productivity. Decorate with light and airy window treatments so that the sun can shine through.

Energy-efficient lighting

In addition to focusing on natural light, think about swapping out harsh light bulbs with more energy-efficient ones.

The LED lighting is ideal not only to cut back on expenses but to promote light that’s calming. LEDs are a directional light source. In other words, LED lights emit light in specific directions as opposed to harsh lighting that emits light in all directions.

A research article by Sage Journals explains that increased exposure to energy-efficient lighting results in higher satisfaction and productivity.

So if the lighting in your apartment needs an upgrade, consider using energy-efficient LED lights instead.

5. Get creative with artistic pieces

While revamping your apartment, stick to styles that won’t cause damage. Your place will come together nicely when you think outside the box when placing art pieces.

Even if you can nail art to the wall, there are easier ways to display them, such as leaning them against something. You can prop up a canvas print on a desk or table. And don’t forget about your bookshelf!

If you have smaller pieces of artwork, try placing them in front of books. Putting artwork in front of books is an easy and attractive way to display them. There are plenty of lightweight decorative pieces you can show off.

Fun displays are a much better alternative to damaging walls or other areas in your apartment!

Here’s an idea: Use a decorative ladder to display a quilt your grandmother gave you or drape a flexible canvas print over one of the steps.

By now, you should have some excellent ideas on how to decorate your apartment. Remember to keep these tips in mind moving forward. Besides what we mentioned above, a few other things to keep in mind are how best to use storage and how to keep things organized.

You should always be thinking of ways to use the space to your advantage while decorating to fit your needs.

Even if your decorating style is not the norm, don’t be afraid to color outside of the lines. Just remember it’s best not to cause any permanent damage.

Now have some fun and transform your apartment into a beautiful work of art!

Author Bio:

Located just 49 feet from St. Louis University for graduate and undergraduate programs, and only a short drive from Saint Louis University, Coronado Place and Towers is SLU ‘s best source for attractive apartment homes.  Learn more about our apartments and see if Coronado is the right place for your next home.