10 tips to refresh your rental kitchen that your landlord will be down for

Breakup with your boring kitchen

Sage green kitchen with potted plants
(Image credit: Getty)

 Many of us love spending time in the kitchen, especially if we’re playing with different ingredients to create some mouthwatering recipes for dinner parties and most importantly, ourselves. Some of us, however, may live in smaller spaces where we may feel it to be quite tight to spend time in our kitchen cooking and more. Not to mention, boring looking, if the decor is plain and simple.

With that said, some of us may want to give our small kitchen a makeover for it to feel a little more spacious than it usually does or for it to simply look innovative and cool. All it takes is some knowledge on simple renovations and refreshing the space productively, as well as upkeep it to be your creative space since that’s where all the cooking is done. 

We had the pleasure of speaking with interior designer Ling Law, of Ling Interiors, who provided us with her tips and tricks to refresh a small kitchen without having to go all out on hardcore renovations. 

Changing the paint color

You'll be surprised at how paint color can improve the mood in the room. If you are renting and want a quick refresh, selecting a new paint color will be an instant fix on your walls or cabinets. Try to pick a neutral and off-white paint color if you'd like the space to feel light and airy. White Dove by Benjamin Moore is always Law’s go-to for white, as it is soft yet creamy with a very settled grey undertone and goes pretty much with everything.  

Adding or changing lighting fixtures

Decorative lighting is also a great item to update the look and feel of a space. Adding pendant lights above the island and a chandelier above the dining table not only makes the space visually appealing but also enhances the ambience of the space. 

Out with the old hardware and in with the new

 Swapping out the kitchen cabinet hardware can also give an updated look. If you'd like a more modern look, try to find some hardware that has simpler and cleaner lines. If you're leaning towards a more traditional or transitional look, try to pick something with a little more detail and don't be afraid to mix in with the pulls and knobs to make the hardware look more interesting.  

Look into open shelving

Empty kitchen walls call for adding shelves. When incorporating shelves into a blank wall, you could display your cookbook assortment as well as glassware. To add a touch of glam, you could include minimal or decorative shelf brackets.  

Give your countertops some cover

A fast and effective way to refresh kitchen countertops is by covering a portion of your counter with a large slab of marble or cutting board. This will work well if your objective is to hide any minimal damage your countertops have.  

Include a kitchen runner

Breaking up your flooring by incorporating a runner in front of your cabinets is a neat way to add a pop of color to your small kitchen. This idea is beneficial for those who don’t want to waste money on replacing their floors, as a runner can distract your guests from looking down at cracked kitchen tiles. 

Put your favorite items on display

A fun and cool way to refresh your small kitchen is to turn your favorite pieces into décor. Rather than tossing items away in cabinets, place your favorite plates, bowls, cups, tile spoon, and other items of preference on display. You could always hang your chic-looking pans from a mounted rack on the wall. Also, hanging art on empty wall spaces or investing in some plants and flowers will give your small kitchen some vibrancy. 

Replace appliances

Although replacing your kitchen appliances may not be as budget-friendly, ordering a new stove or chic-looking fridge could give your small kitchen some life. All you have to do is order your appliances and have them installed by the representatives who are in charge of the delivery and viola!  

Get a new faucet

Give your small kitchen some sparkle by investing in a new faucet. With an old-looking faucet, your kitchen will just look plainer than ever. Even if your faucet isn’t rusty or leaking at the moment, a bright and shiny fresh faucet is like adding a rare coveted jewel to your small kitchen.  

Aida M. Toro
Freelance Writer

About Me:

Hello! My name is Aida M. Toro and I am a freelance writer that loves cultivating stories about amazing people, fashion, interiors, art, and food. I currently write for Harper’s Bazaar Vietnam, The House Magazine, Hobnob Magazine, The C-Word, and Real Homes. I live in West New York, New Jersey, which is literally a 10-minute ferry ride or 20-minute bus ride away from New York City. Although I was born and raised in West New York, I consider NYC my home, as I believe it to be the place where all dreams come to fruition, and of course, spend most of my time in. When I’m not writing, I love perusing the city streets and taking snaps with my iPhone of street art along with random things, scoping out new restaurants as well as their spaces, shopping at some of my favorite stores, spending time with family and friends, walking my cockapoodle Benji, and working out at Lifetime or DOGPOUND, which are some of the top fitness spaces in Manhattan and overall the U.S.