Making a Rental House a Home {before pics}

The last place I rented was the apartment I lived in when Mike and I met.  That was many {many} years ago, folks.  When we decided to move to Florida, we planned to buy a home.  We even made trips down here to look and had a wonderful realtor helping us.  We kept hitting roadblocks with the sale of our WV house {it did finally go through} and just couldn’t find exactly the home we were looking for. So, we decided to rent for at least a year while we figure out the area and where we want to live, etc.

We found an adorable little house less than 3/4 of a mile from my brother’s place!  Perfection!

florida houseThe house is a great size for us since it is just Mike, Matt {our youngest who is 15} and me {our 3 year old granddaughter is with us right now too and loves “mimi’s house“}.

I love to decorate.  I even spent a few years doing it for a living so I was excited about the challenge of decorating a rental home.  There is less you can do to change a rental to suit your taste so I am spending way too much time on Pinterest figuring out ways to make it our home without changing the cabinets and painting walls. Speaking of walls, meet my nemesis:

ugly wall picI wouldn’t sign the lease until the landlord agreed that I could paint this wall a color that better fits our style and taste.  I chose a dark chocolate for that accent wall, which complements the casual coastal style I’m going for without being “beachy”.  I will reveal that in a future post.

This area is right as you come in the front door.  It houses my home office space and our family computer as well.  It also has half the {formerly} ugly wall and acts as the only entryway.  How I solved that challenged will be a post of its own.

home office pic

Next is the other half of the {formerly} ugly wall that will be the living room space.

Living room pic

I love the tile floors, set on the diagonal, throughout the main living space of this home. I have learned, however, to wear shoes at all times or my legs ache! I think I’m getting old.

The kitchen is open to the other living space which is a concept I’ve fallen in love with.  I look forward to finding the perfect bar stools to create a homework/breakfast bar space at the counter.


Let me apologize for the blurry pic of the kitchen before I continue…don’t know why that one came out that way.  Anywhoo, if I owned this home I would adhere some stone to the outside of this island to add texture and visual appeal. I would also change out the cabinets and upgrade the appliances.  Since I am renting, I am going to be content with bar stools and decorative touches that will personalize this space.

This is the dining nook directly across from the kitchen.  So much potential!

dining nookI can’t wait to show you the adorable dining room set that was given to us by my sister in love.  Fits perfect in this space!

The master bedroom is a clean slate with a large walk in closet and a nice big soaking tub in the attached bath.  We brought our bedroom set from WV because I love it!  I will show you where we are with the master in a future post as well.

master picAnd, then just to show you one of my favorite features, here is a picture of the screened lanai and a sneak peek of the awesome fenced in back yard.

back yard

Over the next few months, I will post after pics of each room, some of the ideas I have and what I settle on for each space.

This is becoming my favorite home already!

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