Top Design Ideas to make your College Apartment Look like Home


Design your first apartment like you diligently put it together. These simple ideas will help you get it off its feet.

Home is one of the most important spots for one to relax and unwind. This is the place which needs maximum consideration when you are at the planning stage. As a student, your life can be very hectic and to come back to a home that is unkempt can be challenging. However, another challenge in making your house look like home is a budget constraint. Don’t worry; these simple interior design ideas and tips will help you put a nice looking home together.

Pair your furnishings

contemporary-living-room (2)

[Image – Bhavin Taylor Design]

When you find something inexpensive, make the best of it by buying in pairs. When you buy a single piece, while it may look ok, a pair seems like you did this intentionally for the decoration purpose. Like in this living room, the low hung mirrors give the illusion of space while a pair of ottoman creates a spot for the guests to sit and engage with the group.

When you invest in small furnishings, they are less expensive and can be easily shifted from one place to another.


[Image – Bhavin Taylor Design]

In this image, the use of similar looking red cabinets gives the appearance of a long sideboard. To stick to the illusion, the similar looking lamps have been placed at both the ends.

Spend more on the bedding


[Image – Atterholt Interiors]

When you set out to buy furniture, you can make do with a basic setup and a simple looking side table would do the trick. However, you should avoid spending too much on the furniture and can use that money to spend on the bedding. You can make that the focal point of the room, which is not only stylish, but also comfortable.

Chalkboard for fun


[Image – Dupuis Design]

Since you are in a rental home, you may not have the privilege to paint a chalkboard wall. However, you can always use the chalkboard decal for the same look. They can be easily installed and removed and can really liven up large spaces of the wall with boring colour.


[Image – Valerie Wilcox: Photographer]

You can also use the chalkboard paint on any surface and create that into a fully functional chalkboard, all it takes is a few coats. You can start with a mirror frame that looks interesting and stand it on the table if you cannot draw holes into the wall.

Use art as focal points on walls


[Image – Shannon Malone]

You can hang a big piece of art for your living room walls to make them the focus. Like in this room, an elephant print is a great way to add character to your room. For greater effect, you can also add a wall mounted planter with artificial plants taped to it. The real plants may wither over time due to lack of sunlight.

Store things in glass containers


[Image – Valerie Wilcox: Photographer]

Glass jars are a great way to store kitchen supplies as they not only look great, but also allow you the visibility of the things. Big mason jars will be able to do the trick, which are low cost and are readily available. You can wash them and reuse them for unlimited times before you feel the need to throw them away.

Use adhesive tapes for no holes policy


[Image – Jorge Rosso Architecture/Interiors]

If your rental home has a policy of no holes, don’t let that stop you from installing interesting artwork in your home. There are many varieties of tapes and even Velcro available that can be used to stick things to the walls without tampering the paint. If you need to hang small pictures or frames, use these instead of nails.

Make use of clip on lights


[Image – Valerie Wilcox: Photographer]

One of the innovative lighting ideas is clip-on lights that can be used to add light wherever required. You can invest in small versions of this light, which look not only decent but also do a great job in lighting up the specific area. You can clip them anywhere from the bookcases to the bedsides and even atop the kitchen counter for additional light.

Add something comfortable

eclectic-dining-room (1)

[Image – Planning Pretty]

When you add simple things like a comfortable rug under the foot or a cuddly throw on the sofa, these spaces can instantly be transformed into something more comfortable and homey. You can place a fluffy mat beside your bed so that you can get that soft and warm feeling on a winter morning when you wake up and place your feet on the floor. It is these little things that make a home so comfortable.

Use baskets for extra storage

contemporary-bedroom (1)

[Image – Atterholt Interiors]

When you are troubled with the thought of organizing stuff, then the best way to utilize space is by adding baskets. You can add them to any room and they will not appear out of place. If you want visibility and easy access to the items, then use the ones without the lid or lidded ones if you want to hide the items.


[Image – Jenn Hannotte/ Hannotte Interiors]

In this image, the wired baskets have been used to segregate items of other roommates and have been placed in the entryway. You can also add a label to further personalize it.

Bring your personal touch


[Image – Ashley Camper Photography]

Don’t forget to bring in small pretty items like designed candles that add a soft glow to the room and make it look soothing. Add personal touches along the house because it is your home, at least for now. You can instantly make your rental home look like it belongs to you by adding this personalized touch to the décor.

Designing your first apartment may seem daunting with all the budget constraints and living in a rental property. However, with little planning and smart design ideas and choices, you can transform any place into your own place without spending too much.

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