Step inside this Victorian terrace and be inspired by what you can do with a rented home

Thought you couldn't make your own mark on a rental property? Think again. The tenants of this three-bedroom Victorian house have redecorated and added their own character throughout

dining table with flower vase
(Image credit: Future PLC/Words Annabelle GrundyPhotos Co)

When the tenants first looked around this beautiful house in Somerset, they said 'yes' to it straightaway. 'We're both artists working from home, and we could hardly believe how much space there was,' they say. 'It had masses of character too, and period features like the fireplaces, wooden floors and picture rails were right up our street.'

Even though they are renting, the tenants have still been able to decorate and make certain changes to the house. Since moving in in 2008, they've repainted all of the rooms, sticking with neutral colours that complement the traditional style of the old house. 'We wanted it to feel bright and fresh, and not do anything too extreme. We definitely wanted it to feel homely though, and to reflect us. Our style is a mix of old and new, and we want our home to be inspiring and full of character.'

The tenants have treated the pale walls as a background and built up pattern and colour through photographs, pretty china, fabrics, bunting, old books, cushions and painted furniture. 'In a rented home you need to weigh up how much to invest in fixtures, so virtually everything we've added can come with us when we eventually move from here.'

Read more: How to choose furniture when you’re living a nomadic lifestyle

Kitchen

kitchen room with white wall and wooden kitchen counter with curtains

(Image credit: TBC)

kitchen room with white wall and oven with curtain and vintage teacups

(Image credit: future PLC/Annabelle Grundy)

While most of the furniture has been inherited or bought second-hand by the tenants, certain items came with the house, such as this beautiful old dresser. 'The storage is really useful and, as I collect vintage teacups, it's perfect.'

'My mum made the pretty gingham curtains. I like their country look and the fact they tie in well with my vintage blue and white china pieces.'

Get the look
Buy now:
Similar dresser, £650, Roseland Furniture (opens in new tab)

Conservatory

dining room with white wall and wooden flooring with dining table and wooden chair

(Image credit: future PLC/Annabelle Grundy)

The tenants wanted the house to feel cosier, so over time they have laid new laminate flooring in the conservatory and reinstated the doors separating it from the kitchen. 'We have our dining table there now, and a play corner, so it's ideal when our friends with children come round.'

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Buy now:
Tablecloth, from £9.99, Table Protector Direct (opens in new tab)

Snug

dining room with bright red wall and photo frames with dining table and wooden chair

(Image credit: future PLC/Annabelle Grundy)

The snug originally had bright red walls, which made the small room a little too dark. The tenants painted them a soft green instead, and hung old family photos in mismatched frames, which their children love looking at.

Read more: Modern country style ideas: the new rules to follow

Living room

living room with white wall and black fire place with ornate mirror and chair with cushion

(Image credit: future PLC/Annabelle Grundy)

This beautiful fireplace, paired with the ornate mirror, is a fabulous focal point in the living room. Mismatched furniture, artwork and books make it a particularly cosy room, especially when combined with a large rug.

'I've put down a big rug in the living room because, although I love the original floor boards, they're quite draughty.'

living room with white wall and grey sofa with cushoins and enormous mirror with flower pot

(Image credit: future PLC/Annabelle Grundy)

This enormous mirror, inherited from a family member, makes the living room seem larger while also making a bold style statement.

Get the look
Buy now:
Dulux Soft Truffle emulsion, £14 for 2.5ltrs, B&Q (opens in new tab)

Main bedroom

bedroom with white wall and white wooden bed with photo frames and blanket with pillows

(Image credit: future PLC/Annabelle Grundy)

bedroom with white wall and wooden dressing table with white lamp light and white chair

(Image credit: future PLC/Annabelle Grundy)

The main bedroom has been given a shabby-chic country feel with a white wooden bed, cosy throws and an antique dressing table.

Get the look
Buy now:
Similar dressing table, £109, Dunelm (opens in new tab)

Children's bedroom

childrens bedroom with white wall and white fire place with small white bed and curtain with toys and books

(Image credit: future PLC/Annabelle Grundy)

childrens bedroom with white wall and white wooden bed with wooden flooring and poster on wall

(Image credit: future PLC/Annabelle Grundy)

The tenants' son and daughter share the big front bedroom. The parents felt strongly that their children should each have their own area within the room, so they spent time planning how to make the most of the space.

childrens bedroom with white wall and cabinet with books and cushions with teddy bear

(Image credit: future PLC/Annabelle Grundy)

childrens bedroom with white wall and wooden craft table with wooden chair and crafts on wall

(Image credit: future PLC/Annabelle Grundy)

Each child has their own area, plus there's a comfy reading corner and a craft table. 'It has become a multi-functional room and they both love playing in there.'

Bathroom

bathroom area with white wall and black tiles with wooden flooring and wooden towel rail

(Image credit: future PLC/Annabelle Grundy)

The tenants laid pale, wood-look flooring to freshen up the bathroom. The wooden towel rail is a beautiful piece that was inherited by the tenant.

Exterior

house extrior with brick wall and white window

(Image credit: futute PLC/Annabelle Grundy)

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'One of the best aspects of this house is how flexible and adaptable it is. It was just the two of us at first, but we're now a family of four and we've had no problems rearranging the house as our needs have changed.'