Upcycling Tips & Tricks To Elevate Your Rental Home

Upcycling Tips & Tricks To Elevate Your Rental Home

We all have those pieces in the house that may no longer be functional or maybe have looked better in the past? Are you in a constant debate with yourself as to whether you should throw it out or keep it? Do you think “but then am I hoarding?” Throwing out furniture and replacing can be expensive, especially when renting out a property in Malta or Gozo. Upcycling some of these drab pieces to fab pieces can be fun, exciting and can be done on a budget! So why not try these simple upcycling ideas to spice up your rental home.

Give your rental flat and your chest of drawers a fresh new look! 

Totally change up your chest of drawers or even wardrobe by giving them a fresh new coat of paint. A challenge many have tried to undertake in the last few months, this DIY doesn’t call for expertise in the field or much time either. The 3 step process is as simple as sanding, painting and finally adding some new handles. The sanding helps avoid uneven looking drawers or the dreaded splinter. Bonus tip sand down the existing layer of paint or rough wood with a lower grit and for a fine finish go over with a higher grade.


Time to paint! This is the time for customization, don’t be shy with your colour choice. Be as unique as possible whilst still trying to fit the vibe of your rental property. Don't forget to pull out your drawers first to be sure to get in every knock and cranny. New handles add to the ‘newness’ illusion and will help elevate the quality of your drawers and match the rest of your rental. There’s so much variety, choose from classic or modern for a fresh piece to add to your rental home. 

Vertical is the new horizontal Garden. 

When looking for DIY projects to add some character to your rental home keep a look out for pallets. Some shops will give theirs away for free; you might even come across some on the side of the road. They’re cheap and super easy to change up and elevate into something functional and aesthetically pleasing. After finding a couple of pallets start by wearing some protective gloves and inspect for any chipped wood or any stray nails. Time for tools! Visualise your vertical wall and detach pieces of wood as you wish. A coat of paint always helps hide those unwanted flaws that may come through.

The back of the pallet, being the side with the widest openings, should be screwed to the wall. Don’t forget to cover the back of your pots with an extra protective plastic sheet to protect your wall from the moisture that may gather and cause damage. For some tips on what plants to choose to fit your needs, read our previous blog post. Finally, positioning is key! Think at what angle the Maltese sunlight hits your rental property and consider how much of it your vertical garden will need. After that it’s just about nurturing your plants with sun, good quality soil and water as needed. 

Face lift your couch. 

Has your sofa been used and abused? It may look pretty bruised and battered on the outside but deep down is still in good condition. And in any case, have we ever been taught to judge a book by it’s cover?

Reupholstering just one item in a room can totally change up the look and feel of the space in your Maltese rented property, Upcycling furniture of this size also avoids dumping usable items of furniture into a landfill only to be felt for decades to come. The tools needed for this DIY include patience, time (both scarce traits for most but will definitely be worth the effort) and some new fabric. Firstly measure every piece of visible material - keep in mind there’s more fabric tucked under that can’t be seen. Next, deconstruct the whole piece but take notes! Otherwise putting it back together will be puzzling. This is the tricky part which requires some research, as the specification of your couch it’s different sections and cushion that is needed. Here you should focus on removing staples,re-applying the cushioning and re-covering with new fabric. 



Melanie Vella
Written By

Melanie Vella