Can you Paint Apartment Walls? – Find Out Here

Randy Charles
Professional Painter

Randy Charles is the owner of, a website dedicated to providing information, tips, tricks, and news about all things paint. With over 10 years...Read more

Have you just moved into a new apartment and want to make it feel more like home? Painting the walls of your rental can really freshen up the space, but do you know if you’re allowed to?

Paint Apartment Walls

This post is here to guide you through all of that, explaining everything from getting permission from your landlord to handling potential risks.

Prepare for an informative journey into transforming your battleship-grey abode without running afoul of any rental regulations!

Factors to Consider Before Painting Apartment Walls

Before painting apartment walls, it is crucial to consider factors such as the landlord’s policy on painting, the lease agreement, and obtaining permission from the landlord.

Landlord’s policy on painting

Each landlord has rules about painting. Some landlords allow you to paint the walls, while others do not.

Your lease will tell you if you can paint your rented home or not. It is always good to ask the landlord before you start painting.

After all, they own the place! You must get a yes from them in writing if they say it’s okay for you to paint their property. This protects both of you later on.

Lease agreement

Your lease agreement may have rules about painting. This paper is signed by both you and your landlord.

It says what can and cannot be done in the apartment. Look at this paper before you pick up a paintbrush.

If it says no painting, don’t paint! The words on the lease are law.

The lease might also say how to handle painting. You might need to ask your landlord first or hire a professional painter for apartment walls. If there are no clear rules, talk to your landlord about it anyway.

They decide if you can change the color of property walls or cabinets.

Related Article: Can You Paint Over Wallpaper?

Permission from landlord

You must talk to your landlord before you paint apartment walls. This is getting their consent. Your landlord has a say in the color and type of paint used. Some may let you pick, others won’t.

If they say yes, it’s best to get this in writing. This can save you from trouble later on. It will show that the landlord gave a green light for painting rental walls.

But if they say no, then respect their choice and look for other ways to make your place feel more like home without paint.

Risks and Consequences of Painting Apartment Walls Without Permission

Painting apartment walls without permission can result in potential eviction, the loss of your security deposit, and the costly expense of repainting the entire space.

Potential eviction

If you paint your apartment walls without permission from the landlord, there is a risk of potential eviction. While it’s unlikely to happen, landlords have the right to evict tenants who violate their lease agreements.

To avoid this consequence, always seek consent before painting any part of your rental property. Remember that maintaining a good relationship with your landlord is important for a stress-free living experience.

Loss of security deposit

If you paint the apartment walls without permission, you may lose your security deposit. Landlords often require tenants to return the rental unit in its original condition.

If you don’t repaint the walls back to their original color before moving out, the landlord can deduct money from your security deposit to cover the cost of repainting.

So, it’s important to follow the rules and ask for permission before painting any walls in your rental home.

Remember: Losing your security deposit can be costly and could have been avoided by seeking approval first or finding alternative ways to personalize your space without painting.

Costs of repainting

Repainting apartment walls can come with a price tag. The cost of repainting depends on various factors such as the size of the apartment, the number of rooms, and the type of paint used.

Hiring a professional painter can be costly but may ensure a high-quality finish. If you decide to repaint yourself, you’ll need to budget for paint supplies including brushes, rollers, drop cloths, and tape.

Remember that if you choose to paint without permission or fail to return the walls to their original color when moving out, you may risk losing your security deposit. It’s important to weigh these costs before deciding whether or not to repaint your apartment walls.

Alternatives to Painting Apartment Walls

Instead of painting apartment walls, there are several alternatives to consider. Temporary wall coverings, such as peel-and-stick wallpaper or decals, provide a non-permanent way to add color and style.

Hanging artwork and tapestries can also make a statement without any paint involved. Another option is using removable hooks and shelves for functional decor. To explore more alternatives, keep reading!

Temporary wall coverings

Temporary wall coverings are a great option for renters who want to change the look of their apartment walls without permanent changes. Here are some options to consider:

  1. Removable wallpaper: This is a peel-and-stick option that allows you to add patterns and colors to your walls. It can be easily removed without damaging the paint underneath.
  2. Wall decals: These are stickers that can be applied and removed from your walls. They come in various designs and can be an affordable way to add some visual interest.
  3. Hanging artwork and tapestries: Instead of painting, you can hang pictures, paintings, or tapestries on the walls to create a personalized touch. This allows you to change up the look whenever you want.
  4. Using removable hooks and shelves: You can use removable hooks or adhesive strips to hang lightweight items like picture frames, mirrors, or shelves. These can be easily taken down without leaving any marks on the walls.
  5. Temporary fabric panels: Fabric panels can be hung on the wall using adhesive strips or hooks for a soft and cozy look. They come in different textures and patterns, allowing you to switch them out as desired.

Wall decals

Wall decals are a great way to add color and personality to your apartment walls. They are easy to apply and remove, making them perfect for renters. Here are some benefits of using wall decals:

  1. Easy installation: Wall decals usually come with adhesive backing, making them easy to stick onto the walls without any tools or special skills required.
  2. Temporary and removable: Unlike paint, wall decals can be easily removed without leaving any residue or damage on the walls. This is ideal for renters who want to personalize their space without making permanent changes.
  3. Variety of designs: Wall decals come in a wide range of designs, patterns, and colors. You can choose from floral prints, geometric shapes, inspirational quotes, or even custom designs to suit your style and preferences.
  4. Cost-effective: Wall decals are an affordable option compared to paint or wallpaper. You can find high-quality decals at reasonable prices, allowing you to transform your apartment walls without breaking the bank.
  5. Non-permanent solution: If you change your mind about the design or want to switch things up in the future, you can easily remove the old wall decal and replace it with a new one.
  6. No drying time: Unlike paint that requires drying time between coats and before furniture can be moved back into place, wall decals provide instant results. Once applied, they are ready to be enjoyed right away.

Removable wallpaper

Removable wallpaper is a great option for adding color and style to your apartment walls without the commitment of permanent paint. Here are some key facts to know about removable wallpaper:

  • Removable wallpaper comes in a variety of patterns, colors, and designs, allowing you to personalize your space.
  • It is easy to install and remove without causing any damage to the walls.
  • You can find removable wallpaper at home improvement stores or online retailers.
  • This type of wallpaper is ideal for renters who want to make their apartment feel more like home but don’t want to risk losing their security deposit.
  • Removable wallpaper is affordable and can be a cost-effective alternative to painting.
  • If you change your mind or want to update the look of your walls, simply peel off the removable wallpaper and replace it with something new.

Hanging artwork and tapestries

Decorate your apartment walls without paint by hanging artwork and tapestries. Here are some ideas:

  • Use adhesive hooks or removable hooks to hang lightweight artwork or framed posters.
  • Hang tapestries or fabric panels using curtain rods or tension rods.
  • Create a gallery wall by arranging multiple smaller frames or canvases in a visually appealing pattern.
  • Utilize floating shelves to display small decorative items, plants, or framed photos.
  • Hang a large statement piece, such as a mirror or oversized clock, to add visual interest to the wall.
  • Consider using removable wallpaper in small sections as an accent wall behind furniture or in a designated area.

Using removable hooks and shelves

You can also make your apartment feel more like home by using removable hooks and shelves. Here are some advantages of using them:

  1. Easy installation: Removable hooks and shelves are simple to install. They usually come with adhesive backing that sticks securely to the wall, making it easy for you to hang things up without damaging the paint.
  2. Versatility: Removable hooks and shelves can be used in a variety of ways. You can hang up pictures, mirrors, or even small shelves to display decorative items or store small belongings.
  3. No permanent damage: Unlike nails or screws, removable hooks and shelves do not leave behind holes or marks on the walls when they are removed. This is especially important if you need to return the apartment to its original condition when moving out.
  4. Flexibility: With removable hooks and shelves, you can easily rearrange your space whenever you want. If you decide to change the layout of your furniture or decorations, simply remove the hooks or shelves and reposition them as needed.
  5. Rental-friendly: Landlords typically have no objections to tenants using removable hooks and shelves since they do not cause any permanent damage to the walls. This means you can add your personal touch without violating any lease agreements.


In conclusion, whether you can paint apartment walls depends on your landlord’s policy and lease agreement. It is important to get permission before painting to avoid risks like eviction or losing your security deposit.

If painting isn’t an option, there are alternatives like temporary wall coverings or hanging artwork to make your apartment feel more personalized.

Consider the costs and consequences before deciding to paint your apartment walls.


Can I paint the walls of my apartment?

Whether you can paint the walls of your apartment depends on the terms of your lease agreement or the policies set by your landlord. You should check with them before making any changes.

What should I do if I want to paint my apartment walls?

If you want to paint your apartment walls, you should first ask for permission from your landlord or property manager. They may have specific guidelines or requirements that need to be followed.

Do I need to return the wall color back to its original state when moving out?

In most cases, tenants are required to return the wall color back to its original state when moving out. This means either repainting it in its original color or covering up any non-approved colors.

Are there any restrictions on the type of paint I can use in my apartment?

There may be restrictions on the type of paint you can use in your apartment due to safety regulations or building rules. It’s best to check with your landlord or property manager for approved types of paint.

Can painting an apartment help with getting a security deposit back?

Painting an apartment can help improve its appearance and increase the chances of getting a security deposit back, especially if it has been done professionally and according to any specific guidelines provided by the landlord.

Randy CharlesProfessional Painter

Randy Charles is the owner of, a website dedicated to providing information, tips, tricks, and news about all things paint. With over 10 years of experience in the painting industry, Randy has become an expert in the field and is passionate about helping others learn more about painting. He has written numerous articles on the subject and is committed to providing accurate and up-to-date information to his readers.

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