When going on a flight to another planet seems more likely than buying a home on this one.
It is the year 2021 - the Australian housing market continues to explode with average dwelling prices in Sydney this year up over 17% and home ownership rates continuing to decline especially for those aged 25-34.
Many are forced to rent when the alternative is to purchase a home that is 9.3 times more than the medium annual household income.
While the rise of buy-now-pay-later challenges the idea that millennials are scared of debt, we are certainly not fans of the 30 year mortgage model - buy-now-pay-forever.
Even some who can afford to get into the property market are veering away and making an active choice to rent forever.
As noted by financial adviser and She’s On The Money founder Victoria Devine, the boomer rhetoric that ‘rent money is dead money’ is being dismantled by those that are actively investing in assets with higher returns that require far less commitment and renting to live a lifestyle in locations they would never be able to buy in.
And yet even those deliberate renters cannot deny the occasional homeownership envy they feel.
Some say the envy has been forged by the constant stream of home renovation shows and images of amazing homes plastered on socials.
I believe the recent rage was spurred by watching homeowners making “essential” trips to Bunnings during the lockdowns and having a larger array of lockdown activities to do such as painting the house.
Watching the renovation rise during COVID - with new kitchens installed, proper office spaces carved out in houses and backyards being refreshed for summer, from the sidelines has been like torture for a cooped up renter.
Especially given those purchasing the properties millennials are trapped renting in are investors who are so focussed on resale value that every fitting and detail is white, grey, minimalist and, well, bloody bland.
But there is hope.
Here's how to add your personal style to your space, without ripping up floors or knocking down walls.
1.Refresh those windows
Often when moving into a new rental we just accept whatever drab blinds or curtains have been put in place. But you can totally change these up and play with layering curtains or blinds using whatever systems are in place. Just remember to not chuck out the old blinds as you’ll need to reinstall them when you leave.
2. Add a statement furniture piece
3. Change up the floors
Most rental carpets tend to be very practical and not so kind on the eye. You update the look and feel of a room by adding a large area rug to the base of a bed or middle of a living room. Even placing a small rug down the side of your bed can add another dimension to your bedroom space.
4. Play with art
You may not be able to paint the walls of your rental, but you can use artwork to inject colour and your personality. While drilling holes in the walls is not allowed, you can use removable, self-adhesive hooks to hang artworks. We are also a big fan of leaning artworks on benches or sideboards and layering different sized frames. We know art can feel inaccessible so look out for art you can subscribe to in our next drop.
5. Brighten your space with mirrors
A mirror can truly transform a space - bouncing light around to make small apartments feel larger and brighter. For renters we recommend getting floor leaner mirrors that don’t require being mounted onto walls. We have a few statement mirrors on route in our upcoming drops.
6. Add some greenery
Obsessed with the outdoors now that picnicking is your new favourite hobby? Same. Try introducing a few potted indoor plants of different sizes that you can layer in corners or on the mantel pieces of your rental. Natural elements have a calming and softening effect on any room. We suggest placing your favourite plant near your working from home space to help calm you on a Friday afternoon when you’ve just been delegated more work to do.
7. Splurge on new bedding
If your bed linen is a few years old, change it up. You will be surprised at just how much of a mood shifter it can be. Your bed is likely the biggest piece in your room, so changing this can completely transform the space and add colour and texture immediately. Our favourite places to shop include Society of Wanderers and In Bed.