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I’m an Irish design expert and these design hacks can make your rented house a home

I’m an Irish design expert and these design hacks can make your rented house a home

AN interior designer has warned there is one thing everyone should keep in mind when designing a home including rentals.

Whether it’s a short term rental, new house or a home you have lived your life in, these important tips from can help transform your humble abode.

Emma Delaney of April & The Bear told the Irish Sun: “I'd say the number one thing I would always recommend someone to have is - each room has to have a purpose.

“Each room has to have a certain function. Otherwise, if you have a room and it doesn't have a function or purpose, it can definitely be thought as and appreciated as a dumping ground.”

She also advises against sweeping miscellaneous items into a cupboard, storage area or spare room.

She explained: “I think trying to maintain a purpose and functionality in each room, it makes sure that you are making the most out of each space in your home.”

When making a rental house a home, the expert strongly advises people to look at their storage options and using space.

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In fact, utilising space is what led Emma to pursuing her career in interior design.

She revealed: “Spaces always were something that made me tick and kind of try and solve, different configurations and things like that.

“And clever uses of spaces, it’s always something that I've loved interacting with.”

Working as an interior designer, Emma stresses the importance of investing in good storage.

She explained: "We look at storage as such a necessary tool in every building.”

The designer feels it’s important to declutter a home as much as possible and try “have everything tucked away”.

The Mayo woman believes in investing in furniture you can always hold on to but also suggests thinking outside the box if you are on a budget.

She said: “I think making the most out of certain pieces certain sideboards, cabinets that once you buy them, they're sustainable number one but also that you can take them into your next home.”

April and The Bear have a selection of storage units including Flak wardrobes, customisable Souk storage and even storage for your favourite wine.

Emma said: “I think trying to just not have clutter around, having really good storage, whether it's incorporated into units.

“I would also recommend wall mounted hooks in the back of the door. They're lifesavers.”


One important step in making your rental a home is lighting.

Emma advised: “For rentals, I'd be talking about floor lamps and light fittings in particular that are positioned on the ceiling.

“If you place a certain decorative shade over the actual bulb then there is no invasive work there. You can even literally do it yourself.”

Another important element in transforming your rented home is to work with what have and introduce elements of what you like.

The interior designer takes on all types of projects and recently transformed a rental for an English couple.

She said: “Given it was a rental, we just worked with what was there with regard to the paint scheme.

“I think there's nothing wrong with [having] a neutral paint scheme because you can take more kind of courageous steps with pops of colour here and there through the interior items.”

The clients wanted a relaxing interior, that was not too minimalistic.

Emma said: “It was really just slight pops of colour here and there with a quite a calming feel to it.”


While investing in furniture and storage you can bring to your next home is ideal, the designer points out certain items you can buy a bit cheaper.

She advised: “It's important to take into account the requirements of what your landlord means and the limitations of not being able to paint the rooms.

“But I would suggest is art prints, soft textiles, things like that, that can hold colour throughout them.

“People are super surprised even when we go into projects, placing in certain art prints that really ties together a scheme.”

The expert suggests using wall mounted adhesives that won’t mark walls.

Tying in colours and design will bring that finished look to any room.

Emma said: “Rugs, cushions, things like that, that really bring the scheme together.

“I think it definitely does create that more warm ambient feeling.”

Emma and her team at April And The Bear, offer interior consulting services that are tailored for those looking to create something truly unique, whether that be a new build, an extension or complete refurbishment of an existing structure.