How to Deal With Ugly Wall Color or Carpet in Your Apartment

Originally posted on October 10, 2017 8:49 am
Updated on October 10, 2017 9:02 am


We have all been there when looking for a new place; an apartment or home ticks off all of our boxes and is looking like a great place until something terrible happens. You walk into the bedroom or living room and you are greeted by horrific wall colors, an ugly wallpaper job, or crappy carpets. While that is no problem when buying a house (as you can remodel), most landlords won’t let you rip out carpet or paint the walls.

Many people might head right for the door after this discovery and disregard the whole place, but they shouldn’t. There are plenty of things you can do to make this bad wall color or carpet much easier to deal with.

1. Art is your best friend

When it comes to god-awful paint color or wallpaper choices, hanging art on your wall is one of the best fixes. Not only does art draw people’s eyes to it, but it also covers up some of the walls. It is basically combatting your ugly wall color or wallpaper in two different ways. While you likely won’t be able to use nails or screws to hang your art, there are tons of other alternatives. Command strips or command hooks are great and can hold your art on the wall, without damaging the walls at all.

2. Furniture choices and placement is key

Furniture is oftentimes the star of the room, and this is good news for you if you have a room with terrible carpeting or awful wall color/wallpaper. By selecting furniture that catches the eye or is fairly large, you will essentially make it so you and others see less of that wall or carpet. So while the type of furniture you select is important, so is its placement. If there is a particular spot on the wall or floor that is unsightly, putting furniture over it or in front of it is a great idea. Also, placing tall or large furniture up against the wall is a great way to hide wallpaper or ugly colors.

3. Keep the carpets clean

Some carpets are just terrible in general, of course, but others might just be dirty or unkempt. Before you look for ways to hide the hideous carpet, you should try and see if maybe it is just dirty. Try cleaning your carpet before you go about looking for ways to hide it. You would be shocked at what a little bit of cleaning and care can do for a carpet. Also, keeping it clean is important as well. While many landlords will have carpets cleaned before a new tenant comes in, that isn’t always the case.

4. Look into removable wallpaper

If you are renting an apartment, chances are you cannot paint the colors of your walls or add permanent wallpaper. However, there is a new trend of removable/temporary wallpaper that is gaining steam. A lot of different companies are selling it, and it comes in many different patterns. Best of all, it is very easy to put on and take off. Of course, before doing something like this it is still a good idea to speak to your landlord and make sure this is something that’s is allowed.

5. Use area rugs or floorcloths

Having old or unattractive carpets is, unfortunately, a very common trait for many apartments. Instead of forcing yourself to live with these carpets, why not cover them up? While most people think large rugs or floorcloths are for hardwood only, that is not the case. These can be used on carpet and can be a great way to hide the terrible carpeting, and can also be a great way to add some different colors and dimensions in the room.

6. Embrace the color

Humans are very dynamic and adaptable, so there is nothing saying that you won’t soon embrace the eclectic colors or patterns in your apartment. While this won’t happen overnight, things can be done to help you learn to love the strange or unique colors. For example, taking a sample of the colors of the wall or the carpet to your local paint store can help you identify what colors will actually go well with your walls or carpet. This will help you find furniture or painting that will go with the carpet/walls, not hide them.

7. Talk to your landlord

While it is uncommon, there are some landlords out there who will be willing to let you make interior changes. These are generally in smaller and self-managed apartments, but not always. Let them know you are willing to make the changes yourself and they might even go half-way with you in order to make their unit more attractive for the next renter after you. This will obviously depend on the type of unit you are in and the type of person your landlord is, but it is definitely worth a try if you really cannot stand the carpet, wallpaper or wall color in the unit.

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