How a Tenant Can “Love” Their Rental Home’s Bathroom

Bathrooms are usually pretty much the last place in the house that someone voluntarily spends an extended amount of time — but there are quite a few reasons why the room deserves your attention anyway.

A small but pleasant bathroom.Both modern psychological theory and ancient Chinese feng shui rules will tell you that owning the spaces you must use is good for your self-image and your mental health. Here’s what you need to do to conquer your bathroom in a way your landlord will appreciate:

Fix or Replace Anything That’s Obviously Broken
The first step is to look carefully at what is actually in your bathroom, and make sure that everything works. Sometimes, that will involve putting a worker order in with your landlord — that’s OK, just get it done. But it might also be worth your while to ask if you can use this opportunity to upgrade.

For example, if your sink faucet is leaking, ask your landlord if you can buy your own fixtures or just cover the cost difference in the upgrade you want — they’ll almost certainly agree, especially if you agree to leave them behind when you move out. That way, you get what you want, you ‘own’ the bathroom that much more, and the landlord is ecstatic about putting in the work because he’s not paying for the parts.

Add Vibrancy and Color
Most landlords won’t let you repaint the whole bathroom — but you don’t need to. A rubber-bottomed rug, some intensely vibrant cloth glued to some foam squares hanging on the wall, and maybe a piece of brightly-hued art can totally transform the feeling of a room without a drop of paint.

While you’re at it, take a look at the things you use the most often over the course of a week, and see if you can make or buy something that will add to the aura of the room and disguise those often-used items at the same time. For example, buy a beautiful bulb-top glass jar to store your Q-tips on the countertop, or get a watertight rubber-ducky container to store your facial scrubbing pads in — whatever matches your aesthetic and turns the practical into the pretty.

Attend to All Five Senses
Thus far, it’s been all about the visual aspect — but it’s all important. The smell, for example, is often part of why no one spends any extra time in the bathroom. If you want to own the space, you have to feel comfortable there, and that means taking control of the smell. Scented candles or oils with diffusers, whatever it takes — make it easy on the nose (which will, by nature, affect the ‘taste’ of the room as well.)

If there are aspects of the bathroom that are not tactile-friendly, brainstorm what you can do to fix those parts. It might be as easy as some sandpaper or as complex as getting a latex coating to dip something in — as long as you can undo it before you move out, your landlord should be OK with it.

Once your bathroom looks, smells, feels, and sounds like a place you can genuinely enjoy, you’ll find that waking up, going to bed, and all of the other necessities that happen there every day are much more enjoyable. Now, about that kitchen…

Posted in: 2. Tenant Blog Posts, Maintenance

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