In the competitive rental market, setting your listing apart is crucial. One way to make a property stand out from the pack is with a fresh and stylish redo. However, not every decorating trend is the right fit for a rental property. The goal of a rental is to appeal to a wide audience and create a blank slate for the tenants that move in. Therefore, overly personal style choices could limit the pool of valuable leads more than landlords realize. So, to make sure you do not make a costly mistake, join us below to review the top rental decorating trends to avoid in 2021.
Top 12 Rental Decorating Trends Saying Goodbye in 2021
Let’s face it; some design ideas should have left us a long time ago. So, if you want your rental home to have a style to stand the test of time, check out these trends to avoid –
- Tile Countertops
- White on White Kitchens
- Shiplap and Decorative Millwork
- Linoleum Flooring
- Edison Bulbs
- Single-Use Spaces
- Dark Colors
- Barn Doors
- Gray and More Gray
- Half-hearted Backsplashes
- Ornate Hardware
- Open Shelving
Tile countertops have their place in design, but most view them as simply outdated. That said, there are several downsides to tile countertops in a rental. Keep in mind that the surfaces and materials in a rental home face far more wear and tear than a traditional home. Therefore, durability is key to keeping the property looking great and, more importantly, keeping the costs down. Unfortunately, tile countertops do not hold up well over time and are easily chipped, cracked, or stained. So, instead, opt for a more stylish and modern material such as engineered stone or granite. While the initial cost may be higher, the long-run benefits are well worth the investment.
White on White Kitchens
A crisp all-white kitchen was a dream for many homeowners longing for a clean and modern style. However, that dream died out as the white-on-white trend became overdone in the last few years. In rentals, white flooring, cabinetry, countertops, and walls are a bold choice no matter the style trend. While it is a great idea to provide a blank slate to renters, all-white is one of those rental decorating trends that does not hold up over time. Due to the wear and tear rentals accumulate, choosing a neutral yet more forgiving color pallet is more practical.
Shiplap and Decorative Millwork
Unless your rental is a cottage in Cape Cod, covering all the walls with shiplap is likely not going to attract the vast pool of renters you hoped for. Instead, this is one of those rental decorating trends to use sparingly. So, consider an accent wall to add texture and visual interest without overwhelming the space. Additionally, there are great, less permanent options on the market as an alternative to shiplap, such as textured wallpaper and beadboard.
Linoleum flooring is a cost-effective material that comes in a variety of colors, patterns, and styles. Therefore, it can prove to be an attractive option for landlords. However, despite the consensus that this look is dated, it is also easily damaged. For landlords, a low-cost material will deliver exactly what you pay for, which is an inferior product. Instead, consider a more durable and attractive option such as tile or laminate.
Several years ago, Edison bulbs were all the rage. However, the original bulbs were expensive, would become hot very quickly, and had a comparatively short lifespan to other options. That said, newer versions have come along in an LED version that improved the lifespan and overheating issue. Despite the more energy-efficient update, Edison bulbs remain expensive, and they do not offer the same light output as other LED bulbs. This, along with a dim demand for the visual appeal, has led many renters and landlords to go with standard high-efficiency bulbs.
Thanks to the pandemic, one of the biggest rental decorating trends to avoid in 2021 is single-purpose spaces. As many renters adjusted to a work-from-home reality, finding room to accommodate a workspace and, in some cases homeschool area is a challenge. So, owners must present creative solutions to maximize the square footage available when the home doubles as a living space, work, school, and entertainment area.
Dark colors make a dramatic impact when used the right way. However, dark hues can close in a space and require more strategic lighting schemes. While this is one of the rental decorating trends that may resurface one day, for now, lighter colors are the way to go. If you insist on using dramatic or dark colors, make sure the room is large, offers ample natural light, and consider using it as an accent rather than all-over color. For the top color choices for interiors in 2021, check out the list from Better Homes and Gardens.
Barn doors are beautiful in the right setting. Unfortunately, they have become so overused that it is one of the top rental decorating trends to avoid in 2021. Additionally, many homeowners started using barn doors everywhere, even as bedroom or bathroom doors. Generally, barn doors do not extend the same privacy level as a regular door and should instead be reserved for room dividers. That said, a great alternative in areas where dividers are needed, but space is limited is to install pocket doors. These offer timeless styling that suits a wide variety of décor styles.
Gray and More Gray
Gray is now one of the most popular colors for rental homes. However, while gray is not going away anytime soon, too much of a good thing can turn bad. Like many other neutrals, gray comes in various tones and tints, but it has become widely overused. That said, the benefit in rentals is that gray is more forgiving in hiding dirt and wear than white or beige walls. So, try to use gray as part of a layered and warm neutral palette as not to make the home seem drab or cold.
Nowadays, if you are going to do a backsplash, bigger is better. One of the rental decorating trends fading out in 2021 is simple half-wall backsplashes. Instead, renters and homebuyers prefer full wall designs with either decorative tile shapes or full slab stone. While this may present a cost barrier for some, it is easy to clean, durable, and adds value to a home or rental listing. So, if the comps in your rental property’s neighborhood lead you to believe a kitchen upgrade is warranted, consider a new backsplash.
Ornate is out; sleek is in. Whether it is a luxury condo on the waterfront or a single-family home in the suburbs, clean and modern styling is best. Instead of turning to flashy or overly-detailed gold finishes which can seem dated, consider a minimal design in brushed nickel or matte black. Besides, these details are likely to be more cost-efficient and easily replaced when needed, making them a great choice for rentals.
Open shelving is another one of the rental decorating trends phasing out in 2021. This is mainly attributed to unrealistic applications in kitchen areas. More and more individuals realize that open shelves for storing glassware and dishes can appear cluttered. Moreover, without any protection, dishes can accumulate dirt, grease, and grime far more easily. That said, open shelving is still an acceptable decorating trend in small doses for displaying personal photos or items.
Get Your Rental Noticed with Bay Property Management Group
In today’s competitive rental market, every advantage counts. For property owners, one of the biggest advantages they have is partnering with the right property management firm to take their rental business to the next level. There is no better company to turn to than Bay Property Management Group when it comes to marketing and managing your Harford County rental property.
Whether providing feedback on what could increase leads to everyday maintenance and accounting needs, our professional leasing and management team has you covered. Give us a call to learn more about our full-service property management services in Harford County today!