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How Decorating Can Affect Your Security Deposit

Trinidad Renter Hanging ArtworkWhether you own or rent your Trinidad home, we’d like our living space to feel homey. For a good chunk of people, this would involve adding decorative elements that help to personalize a home. But as a renter, your decorating can have a huge effect on your security deposit. The majority of leases contain a detailed list of the kind of changes you, the tenant, can create as well as what you would need permission from your landlord to do.

But if some items are not clear, you may begin to wonder exactly where the line is between what’s allowed and what isn’t. And if you’re not sure, you may accidentally do something that could get less of your security deposit back than you want. Here are a few common décor items that would cost you – and how to avoid being charged for repairs.

Interior Paint

Here’s the number one question renters ask: Can I paint the interior of my rental house? And this common question actually makes sense to ask! An easy way to personalize a room or the entire home is by changing the paint color. To be safe, make certain to check with your landlord first if your lease specifically states that you can paint your rental house,

Most leases state that you should return the home to its original condition. Even though it does not mention paint in any section of the lease, it’s crucial to understand that this includes the paint color on the walls. Your landlord is able to legally withhold funds from your security deposit to repaint the house if you have altered the wall colors and change it back to its primary state before you leave.

Wall Damage

Another huge reason renters don’t get their entire security deposit back is due to holes (or other damage) in the walls. When you alter your home, you may not be considering how your landlord will react to the damage left after placing framed artwork, mounted televisions, or other wall-mounted décor items. Even just tiny nail holes in a wall can have an impact on security deposit deduction, and the cost of repairs goes up depending on the size of the holes left behind.

To refrain from losing your deposit, try planning your décor while taking into consideration what’s going to happen after you’re done renting. Select nail-free hangers, or just simply refrain from hanging anything on the walls. Large artwork or televisions can be aesthetically pleasing on top of an accent table or cabinet, plus it won’t leave any wall damage behind.

Floor Damage

Finally, be sure to safeguard your floors as you decorate. Heavy furniture and other items may gouge, scrape, and otherwise damage floorings like wood or laminate, and crack or break the tile. If you have bulky things you need to keep in your home, have someone else help you move them and place protective material, like a blanket or moving pad, underneath so that you will have less floor damage. If you think you would move your furniture around often, consider purchasing some felt padding for the bottom of your furniture to make rearranging your décor easier and less likely to cause damage.

Regardless if you decorate your rental home, it’s vital to approach it with a mindset that at some point you will be moving out. And when it happens, the less you need to do to restore the home to its original condition, the bigger the chance you will get your full security deposit back.


Is moving to a new rental home on your to-do list this year? Real Property Management DC Metro has the best one for you! We have quality rental homes for every taste and budget, so check out our listings today.

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