3 Ways To Make Your Apartment Feel Like A Home

3 Ways Millennials Can Make An Apartment Feel Like Home On A Budget - The Confused Millennial

Happy Monday friends!

Some exciting news: WE’RE MOVING!!! and since you guys loved the cleaning hacks post so much, I’ve teamed up with my friends at LIK Squared to share some more fun home hacks with you! Today we are talking about 3 easy ways to make your apartment (or living space) feel more like a home!

Backstory: E and I have lived in 100% furnished apartments for the last five years! We literally do not own sheets, a plate, or even a fork! Living in other people’s home’s with other people’s things around us for so many years has left us feeling like guests in someone else’s home, and craving a homey space of our own. A few years back I got fed up and decided we needed to get creative on how to make our apartment feel like home (on a budget no less, without damaging/getting rid of our landlord’s stuff).

I know we can’t be the only ones struggling with this because right now we are actually moving into our first UNfurnished place and $$$ is tiiiight so we aren’t getting things that exactly match our taste or feel super homey to us if you know what I mean…

So how do you make your living space actually feel like a home, without breaking the bank?

 

Here are three easy ways:

1. Get Clear On The Mood You Are Trying To Create.

While replacing furniture to get that “rustic” or “coastal” vibe just right may not be in the cards, you can still create a feeling by investing in a few quality pieces. In our case, we love a cozy laid back vibe, #saltlife, which is why ditching the dorm room posters and hanging a gorgeous acrylic print by photographer Peter Lik was exactly what we needed (excuse the glare of my window on the picture, like I said I am working in a small space dreaming of overhead light some day ?).

Peter Lik is a world-renowned, award-winning photographer (seriously he’s sold multiple photos for over $1 million, and holds four spots in the twenty most expensive photographs ever sold) – and in July 2016 he launched Liksquared.com – Where you can purchase high quality, lightweight, ready to hang, acrylic prints of his work.

2. Bring in nature. 

A simple and easy way to breathe fresh air into a space is by bringing in greenery and flora. Something as simple as keeping fresh flowers around can make a big change. They warm up the space, and allow you to play with the colors and style to fit the mood you are trying to create.

 

3. Switch out knick knacks. 

We have spent the last five years in one bedroom apartments which consisted of a bedroom, and living room. No formal dining room, no den, usually just one wall dividing the two rooms. Which means our living room is a major focal point. By switching out the accessories in a room you can easily add a personal touch.

 

 

In this case, we stored our landlord’s couch cushions in a closet and spruced up the area with throw pillows and blankets that matched our style. We also added picture frames of personal moments. Find the knick knacks you can switch out easily to pull in elements of the mood you are trying to create (read: #1).

 

How have you made your living space a home? Let me know in the comments!


Looking to find some money in your budget to spruce up your home? Grab TCM’s Checklist of Money Saving Tips!


Thank you so much to Lik Squared for sponsoring this post. As always, all opinions are my own.

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  • Sarah Jean

    Bringing nature is is SUCH a great tip. Nothing perks a room up or finishes it off like a plant or bouquet of fresh flowers.

    • Rachel Ritlop

      Agreed Sarah!

  • AFunnyThingHappened

    I’m so stuck at #1, but I know as soon as I tackle it, decorating will get so much easier! These are all great tips; thanks for sharing!

    • Rachel Ritlop

      It definitely will! I would get so caught up on the furniture not being the style I wanted, that I forgot I can still create the feeling from the furniture with some good art work and accents!

  • These are really great tips. I was just telling hubby that I wanted to make our apartment more homey and didn’t know where to start. I’m definitely going to use your tips.

    • Rachel Ritlop

      YAY!! So happy they were helpful! Good luck on making your place feel like home <3

  • Your home is so bright and pretty! Living in a small space can be challenging, which I’ve learned over the years, but I totally agree with all of your advice! Soon as I added plants to my house, it actually felt more like a home 🙂

    • Rachel Ritlop

      Such a simple fix for awesome returns!

  • Elly Leavitt

    these are such great tips! I’ve been subletting (aka moving to various temporary furnished apartments) in NYC for ~ 5 months now and have moved 3 times haha so I feel ya on this article. Plants seriously help so much!

    • Rachel Ritlop

      haha oh i know the NYC sublet life!! haha you basically always feel like a slightly anxious, nomad and pray that theres just no mold and consider it a win haha

  • Great tips, and I really love the background color of the wall.

    • Rachel Ritlop

      Thanks

  • I love the surf board in the background! It makes my heart happy!
    So does #saltlife! 😉
    We have been really blessed to be able to rent houses thus far. I have never lived in an apartment. Granted, all the homes I have lived in have been pretty old and fairly creaky, but it has been so nice to have the extra space. We were also really thankful because my grandmother gave us our furniture for our wedding (before her stroke she owned her own interior design store and she gave us pieces from there).

    • Rachel Ritlop

      haha it’s my first board and i refuse to get rid of it so i use it as art now – you can’t surf it any more because it had a few dings i was slow to repair which led to some of the foam hallowing out 🙁 – and that’s so sad about the stroke, I am so sorry, but very exciting about your furniture!

  • Oh, the art is AWESOME! Like Squared sounds phenomenal. And majorly fun fact- I had no clue you relied solely on full furnished places. That’s so epic!

    Coming Up Roses

    • Rachel Ritlop

      Obsessed with LikSquared! And yup! hence the over the top panic I’ve been in the last week taking on an unfurnished place haha

  • Anna Hubbard

    How exciting that you’re moving! And I live in a university-owned apartment so I definitely know how it feels to want to make a space more homey!
    -Anna | http://www.fivefootandfabulous.com

  • My favorite part is that you’re reading HP 🙂 I suckkkk at bringing in plants, but that’s such a great idea. The BF got me flowers for Valentine’s Day and it brightened up my small little space!

  • Neely

    I rearrange our knick knacks pretty often!

  • Love this! While my hubby and I have always furnished our own place, it hasn’t been in the cards to really go all out so we have random mismatching things ha.

  • It can be hard to get the “homey” feeling in an apartment but these tips definitely help!

  • these are awesome tips, I will have to save these for when I move out!

    • Thank you! You’re home will look like a dream someday i’m sure!

  • Tammy Nilson Tenison

    Great tips! I love using vintage and thrifted finds to make a space feel homey.

  • Shelly

    I love decorating my home with photography! Also, loving the pops of color in the surfboard and pillow!

  • Man I wish I could have found furnished apartments! So lucky! In addition to your create a mood, I use a moodboard and research on Pinterest. I created my current apartment for less than 2k. It seems like a lot to some but it was an honest steal! 🙂

    • Lol it’s definitely been nice! Where did you shop for your stuff?? that’s a steal!

      • All furniture came from Ikea and everything else I got from Home goods, Joss and Main and Amazon. I did a ton of research and purchased most things on sale. It took me a minute to accumulate things but I got the best prices. Seriously check out your local Home Goods. They have the prettiest things for dirt cheap. I live and breath Home Goods.

        • loveee home goods! I got my desk from home goods!!

  • Love these tips so much! I especially love how you talk about bringing the outdoors in!

  • Love this! My husband owned his home before we got married, so I had the task of decorating and turning his bachelor pad into a home after our wedding. It has been fun to put new touches on the place and to spruce it up a bit with decor. Your tip about swapping out knick knacks is so true – I find that it’s fun to buy decorations for different holidays and such. It’s a fun way to keep the house decorated and reflect the current season!
    Katie | Millennial on the Move

  • Yay for you guys! Love that you’re reading HP haha.

    Alix | http://www.apintsizedlifeblog.com

  • These are such great tips! I definitely tried to make my apartment a home by adding things that I wanted and fresh flowers.

  • These are great tips. You have a very nice apartment. I Enjoyed making my apartment into a home. xx

  • Ashley Mason

    Awesome tips Rach! So exciting that you’re moving though!

  • Patricia Conte

    Congrats on your move — very exciting! These are great tips, good to use even if you’re NOT moving! A spruce-up every once in a while is a good thing!

  • nicole simonetti

    I am a firm believer in flowers & plants in the home because it really brings a happy brightness to the place, whether it be an apartment, condo, house, etc. x, nicole // http://www.nicoleeigh.com

  • I love the mood you created! I’m so all over the place with my decor since everything is from places I’ve traveled too… Going to have to figure out how to tie it all in!

  • Abbey Phipps

    Great ideas! I like the idea of switching out little things! 🙂

  • Kristine Circenis

    Tuck and I are moving after graduation and it is also hitting me that we have only lived in furnished apartments. These are great tips for me to hold onto as we start looking at pieces to fill our new apartment. P.S. Love the Half-Blood Prince 😉 xox

    • Thank you!! and it’s my favorite one from HP!!!

  • mckenna bleu

    This space looks so cozy! I totally love the mood of your apartment!

  • I love the beachy vibes and the open space of your apartment! Makes me wish I lived near the ocean!

  • Miss ALK

    It can definitely be hard to make apartments feel like home when you’re moving around a lot as a young millennial! You have some great tips here! I love adding special sentimental touches that don’t break the bank to my living space, and shopping at home goods stores!

    xoxo A
    http://www.southernbelleintraining.com

    • Rachel Ritlop

      Homegoods is my jam!!!

  • Your place is so cute and cozy. I love the print and the surfboard because coastal is my jam!!!

    • Rachel Ritlop

      Haha fo’ sho’! Mine too! I saw that print and was like “I NEED THIS IN MY LIFE!”

  • These are so spot on! I didn’t bother decorating our old apartment, since my husband lived there beforehand. I’m loving that I can finally make our new house our home together now!

    • Rachel Ritlop

      YAY! That’s so exciting! I can’t wait to see what you do with your place!

  • I love all these ideas! I couldn’t imagine living in so many places that were already furnished. You go!

    http://adoredbyalex.com

    • Rachel Ritlop

      Lol thank you! It definitely makes the apartment hunt more stressful (since it limits your inventory) but it’s been worth it up to this point!

  • I have never lived in a pre-furnished apartment, I didn’t even realize that was still a thing! I love tip #2 – plants and flowers always make a space feel happier to me!

    • Rachel Ritlop

      Lol yup!!! And we have loved it since we never have had to buy a fork even! haha

  • Sydney Power

    YES I LVOE THESE IDEAS!! I also agree that adding some nature elements is the best!

    • Rachel Ritlop

      Thank you Sydney!

  • I love how your styled your apartment! I also made sure my apartments felt like home. It made it so much better to come home to.

    • Rachel Ritlop

      Thank you! It really makes SUCH a difference when you can make the space feel like it’s your own!

  • So cute! I lived in an apartment for six years and it’s so important to make sure that space feels like yours!

  • stephanieabills

    Love the advice! I love bringing in as much nature into my place as possible. There is nothing more calming than having fresh flowers in my room to help purify the air and just bring a happy vibe.

  • Chelsea

    So cozy! I love your space! I love bringing flowers in, too! It definitely makes it more home-y! 🙂

  • Adriana

    These are such great tips! I love your living room chair – it’s so pretty! And I love having fresh flowers around at ALL times possible too!

    • Thank you! it’s my landlords! It’s one thing I wish I could take on our move!

  • Great tips! Our apartment that we moved out of last year wasn’t furnished, but it definitely didn’t feel like home. We didn’t do a good job of making it more personal to us!

    • yeah i am hoping our new place feels like home! I think it will since it has all the dream qualities we want!

  • I’m loving your blanket and throw pillow, so cute!

  • Ashley Vickney

    Love having photos of our family and friends! Also that print is beautiful! The pops of color are so pretty!
    xx
    Ashley

    • Thank you!!! I love the pops of color too! I was immediately drawn to it!

  • Vivian

    Bringing in nature was one of the best decisions I’ve made when I recently moved to my new apartment. I love your pictures! Sweet post!

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