Real estate investments are a great way to diversify your asset portfolio. While it can also be expensive, others are finding creative ways to make the experience as affordable as possible.

If you’re one of the many Americans who own and live a duplex, triplex, or fourplex in a very expensive real estate market, you might be glad to know that you can rent out the rest of the property to earn money. This is called house hacking.

With the right improvements and a little bit of fixing, you can significantly increase your rental property’s appearance, attract tenants, and increase your overall returns. The best part is, you won’t even have to break the bank or apply for construction business loans to do it.

Another great way to increase the income from owning a property is using a vacation rental channel manager. This tool will help you to automate all routine operations you normally perform on vacation rental websites.

That said, we’ve gone ahead and compiled a list of ways on how to design your apartment interior on a budget:

1.    Paint the walls fresh

If the apartment is looking a little dark and worn out, repainting your walls can bring it back to life. Many landlords often underestimate the power of adding a fresh layer of paint. But it can be a very transformative solution that freshens up the entire property and adds to its value.

Alexandra Gater, a Toronto-based interior designer, in her interview with, suggests sticking to “light, bright, and neutral colors”. These colors will give the tenants a blank slate, making it easier for them to add pops of colors and adding personality to the space. Light, neutral colors can make the room relaxing – which should be your primary goal in a home.

Be sure not to paint over nail holes in the wall directly. Take the time to fill it in, then sand it, so the surface looks even. Once that’s done, prep and paint it with the color of your choice.

When repainting, you won’t have to worry about breaking the bank. There is a lot of budget-friendly but good-quality paint out there. Plus, if you can’t afford to hire a professional painter, you can always do it yourself.

2.    Upgrade the Kitchen Cabinets

One of the spaces you should focus on when designing a rental apartment is the kitchen. It’s usually one of the most frequented spaces in a home or apartment. That said, if you’re looking for a budget-friendly way to spruce the space up, you can start by upgrading the kitchen cabinets.

You don’t necessarily have to replace the kitchen cabinet. Instead, you can start by repainting it. Colors like grey, white, or charcoal will go well with the neutral walls. You can also consider switching the cabinets doors. If you’re really on a tight budget, you can settle with replacing the knobs and handles on your cupboards and drawers.

However, if the kitchen cabinets are extremely worn out and pose a danger, it might be time to replace them. If you’re handy, you can make the cabinets yourself. But if not, you can always shop at IKEA or the local cabinet shops.

These might be simple improvements, but they can make the difference in turning the apartment kitchen into a relaxing and comfortable space.

3.      Transform the Bathroom

Bathrooms are a place where you cleanse and beautify. That said, it makes sense that it should also look clean and relaxing.

Start with the tiles. If you have the cash to spare and the tiles have become dirty and worn out, consider replacing them. Otherwise, you can scrub the floor with a homemade bathroom cleaner solution composed of equal parts white vinegar, baking soda, and water.

You can also repaint the walls and cabinets. Ensure all the colors match each other so that it wouldn’t be an eyesore to the tenants. Mirrors are also essential in a bathroom, so be sure to add that.

Moreover, be sure to have the plumbing checked before renting the apartment out. Any leaks could create big problems not only in design but also in the structure. If left unaddressed for a long time, the repairs can drain your savings. It will also create unhappy renters.

4.    Fix the lighting

Lights can make a big difference in how the apartment looks overall. When a potential tenant walks into the apartment, ample light can help foster feelings of welcome and openness. Ample light can also create the illusion of space, which will definitely appeal to the renters.

In general, natural lighting is the best. However, artificial lights would also work if you don’t have the luxury of bringing sunlight into the home.

When going over the apartment, be sure to check the lights and see if some need replacing. Add more lights where necessary. It could be the porch, kitchen, garage, living room, or driveway. Replace dim light bulbs with bright ones. You can also add light fixtures in the kitchen and living room to enhance the space’s design.

5.    Add an Outdoor Entertaining Space

An outdoor entertaining space can make your rental property more enticing to the renters. There, they can have a party with their friends and family or entertain guests. Plus, an outdoor entertainment space will also add value to your property if you decide to sell in the future.

Your entertainment space doesn’t have to be expensive. You can simply put a deck and add some outdoor furniture and a barbecue grill. You can also add plants around to enhance the beauty of the space even more.

Wrapping it Up

Your property can be one of the greatest assets you can have. With that, investing in its improvement will ensure that its value will stay up, and you won’t lose months of income because of an unhappy renter. It might seem like a chore to most, but if you want to live comfortably and mortgage-free for the following years, improving your apartment rentals will be your best option.

There are virtually a lot of ways to spruce up your property. If you’re on a budget, you can start by repainting the walls or replacing the knobs and handles in the kitchen cabinets. This will go a long way in sprucing up your entire apartment space and have tenants.

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