Student Blog

Fuss free room design that won’t destroy your deposit

Fuss free room design that won’t destroy your deposit

Cheap and easy ideas for decorating your new student room

You’ve moved into a house with your hand-picked housemates, ready to make it your own. Even though you’ve levelled up from a plastic en-suite to fully fledged bathroom, and you even have stairs now, you’ll still want to stamp some of your personality onto your new student house.

So, here’s the dilemma: you want to put your own spin on your new pad and make it feel like a real home. But a splash of paint here and a nail in the wall there will land you in trouble, and with a big hole in your deposit. However, where there’s a will, there’s a way, and redecorating on a shoe-string budget doesn’t have to involve a shoestring!

Out with the old…

Remember this: just because you’re studying, it doesn’t mean you must live and breathe all the student clichés. Recycle those empty beer bottles you spent all of Fresher’s collecting to display in the windowsill and put the pet traffic cones back in their natural habitat. If you really want to make your house a home, wave goodbye to the trashy trinkets every student gets bombarded with throughout university and open the door to colour, light and textures.

Traffic cone image: https://twitter.com/search?f=images&q=student%20traffic%20cone&src=typd&lang=en-gb

In with the new, that’s still kind of old…

Now that you’ve decluttered your life, it’s time to savvy up that student pad. Before you get ahead of yourselves with an abundance of accessories and a student loan spent on scatter cushions – look at what you already have at your disposal.

Luckily, second hand is the new shabby chic – and thanks to this wonderful digital age its even easier to find the treasure amongst the trash. Freecycle is an excellent place to look for much loved furniture that has lived a life, which you can pick up free of charge!

Charity shops are also excellent hunting grounds for some hidden gems. But if you’re feeling too lazy for a second hand scavenge, the Facebook marketplace is a quick and convenient way to bag your new home additions.

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Facebook marketplace is great for grabbing bargains!

If you want to up the ante even more you could even upcycle your things to give them a facelift. Decorate old tables with patterned paper or maybe spray paint your storage a new funky colour. However, don’t do a Banksy on the furniture already in your student home!

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Upcycling makes old stuff look exciting and new. You can also put your personal stamp on the house!

Deciding your décor

There’s three things to remember when decorating your student home.

  1. It has to be something you can take with you when you move out easily – no hot tubs like on Fresh Meat.
  2. It should probably be something you’ll actually use on a daily basis, rather than pointless tat (and this is coming from someone who had a 6ft inflatable T-rex in their living room in second year.)
  3. And finally, it needs to be in the good-old student budget.

Here’s a few ideas for the living room and bedroom:

The living room

The simplest way to refresh a room is in the details. Cushions and throws can cosy up any space and make your sofa feel brand new. Candles are usually another quick fix, but these aren’t a wise choice for student homes. Place fairy lights in an old glass bowl or vase for an instant room uplift that won’t set the place ablaze.

Some ideas

Click on the picture to find out where it’s from.

String lights

 Purplefrog Property

It’s not a student house unless there’s lights. These are excellent value.

Floor seat

 Purplefrog Property

After a hard day of lectures, feet up is the best position.

Throw blanket

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No need to upholster boring furniture when you can simply throw a throw.

Your bedroom

Your room is your own personal space and needs to have the balance between work and rest. Desk organisers are a great way to declutter (instead of stuffing everything in a draw and pretending it doesn’t exist.)

A clean and clutter free desk will make you feel inspired, and maybe even make you want to study! Keep that motivated feeling going by surrounding yourself with motivational quotes, or maybe a photo of your dream career or location.These inexpensive additions are an easy way to add a personal touch – and are a lot more inspiring than staring at the library walls!

Some ideas

Click on the picture to find out where it’s from.

Photo grid

 Purplefrog Property

Capture memories and moments but keep your walls clean!

Desk storage

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Your work space is essential. Keep it clutter free with this excellent draw storage

Desk lamp

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Keep your work space light and bright. This IKEA lamp is cheap!

Much like the living room, your bedroom needs to welcoming and comfortable. Bare walls and a single pillow and blanket will leave your room feeling lacklustre.

The most obvious route to a personal pad is photos, they’re a super easy way of giving your room a personal flair. Fill your space with frame after frame, fill every corner of your notice board with nights out and fond family memories.

If you fancy a bit of crafty procrastination, hang your photos off some coloured string with some clothes pegs – these items are cheap and easily accessible, yet will give your room that shabby chic vibe.

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Add some wow to your memories with a wall of photo strings.  (Image from here.)

Some student housing might get a little chilly in the winter, so investing in a throw for your bed will be both practical and decorative – if you needed any more excuses to spend money…

About that deposit…

Before you conduct a student version of extreme home makeover, you need to come back down to earth and remember that this student home isn’t yours forever.

Someone will want to move in after you and expect it in the same condition as when you first arrived. Wear and tear happens, but there are some things you can do to protect your deposit from taking a hit.

There’s the obvious pointers – for example don’t become an 80’s rock star and throw your TV out the window. But some things you may not have considered, such as wall markings, are secret deposit cost.

Make sure not to hang anything with pins and don’t use blue tack or sellotape, as these will leave glue or residue marks behind.

However, the Gripping Stuff tape is robust, easy to use and won’t mark the walls – so you can decorate to your heart’s desire.

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Don’t let blu-tack stains cost you deposit deductions. Use poster tape for walls free of marks.

The Gripping Stuff tape is available for £2.75 from Purple Frog.

Now you have some ideas, go and make your house a home, one that you’ll spend some of the best years of your life in!

Read some more of Sophie’s blogs here:

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