Research by the charity among nearly 4,000 tenants reveals just how much more likely they are to stick around if allowed to make their house or flat a ‘home’.
Nearly three-quarters of private tenants (6.6 million people) want to embark on small DIY projects to make their rental property feel more homely, according to new research from housing charity Shelter.
It says getting creative with wallpaper and paint can boost renter wellbeing and challenges the idea that they’re not interested in putting down roots.
Shelter’s research (a YouGov survey of 3,995 private renters in England), found 72% of private renters would feel happier in their homes if they could decorate, highlighting the positive impact small home improvements can have on mental health.
Meanwhile, 29% said they would be more likely to invite family and friends over if they could add personal touches to their home.
The top four home improvements that private renters are most keen to roll their sleeves up for are: painting (51%), hanging pictures and photographs (50%), changing or putting up curtains or blinds (37%) and tidying the garden (25%).
Many landlords are happy for tenants to make small changes, in fact 41% of renters say they already know their landlord allows small improvements.
Polly Neate, chief executive of Shelter, says: “It might not seem like a big deal, but something as small as a fresh lick of paint really does go a long way towards helping families who’ve experienced bad housing or homelessness to feel settled in a new place.”
Shelter is promoting its DIY Skills Adviser service – funded by B&Q – which sends teams of trained specialists to provide practical DIY training and advice to support people settling into a new home after a period of homelessness.
Covering London, Birmingham, Manchester, Sheffield, Merseyside, Dorset and Bristol, it has helped more than 2,500 people with tasks ranging from decorating to gardening, since the partnership launched in 2017.