A few months ago I revealed that I have too much space (I know, major first world problem). My house is just shy of 1,000 sq ft, hence the blog title ‘little house’, but for one person and medium sized dog that is a lot of space. At least more than I was used to. The truth of the matter is that I do not need a guest room/office which I mood boarded here. So I decided it was time to face the fact that I need to rent the room out. My hesitation in renting before was that I really, really enjoy living alone. It is so nice and quiet, I don’t have to wear pants like ever, and I can paint a room at 2 am with asking anyone’s permission; it’s basically heaven on earth. BUT, I was beginning to feel like a bit of a space glutton. I have this perfectly nice room that isn’t being used and I can always use extra money so I (reluctantly) put on my big girl pants and looked into renting out the room. I debated about opening up the listing to friends but instead I opted to go a completely different route. I decide to host an international college student. The reason I chose this route is because it is extremely flexible. The students come for four week sessions and if I ever don’t want a student for a particular month I can just say ‘no.’ I also have someone I can go to if for some reason things aren’t working out and I want the student to move to a different home (you definitely don’t have that option when you rent to a person on a one year lease!). I’m a little nervous but mostly I think it will just be really weird and interesting. Since I decided to host someone as opposed to rent out the room I had to completely furnish the room. Thankfully, I already had a rug, dresser, and bed so this entire room makeover only cost me $100. Not bad!
Keep in mind this isn’t my best work. I by no means love this room and I didn’t ‘design’ it like I have any other part of my house. But I figured that an international student who will be completely out of their element wouldn’t really appreciate my putting them up in a room that had navy blue walls with orange accents. So I went for subtle and sparse instead which is basically the opposite of my style but ah well, here it is… Oh, if you want before pictures go here.
So we are in agreement that this is a really sad makeover right? It isn’t at all what I would have done if the room were for myself. But, I do think it will be perfectly acceptable for a student.
What I did:
– Since this was a zero to low-cost makeover I used the half gallon of paint (Behr- Graceful Gray) I had left over from the first kitchen wall color (here
. It is also the color of the stripe in the entry way, here
). I should get an award for this paint job. I painted the whole room with half a gallon of paint and I did it under an hour and a half! I just high-fived myself.
– I got the desk chair and matching lamp set from a used furniture store for $44.00 total. I love the chair because it is that old kind that gently bounces.
– I got this awesome desk on craigslist for $60. It was one of those old steel case desks that weighs about 200lbs (seriously). I love the green. I also really like how big the desktop is. It’s perfect for a student.
– I hung art that I had lying around. I tried to pick pieces that weren’t offensive or anything. I got the vintage French ad for my 12th birthday. I was obsessed with it forever. The trend is way over but I still love that piece and I’ll always keep it around.
What still needs done:
– I want to buy a box spring for the daybed so the bed will have more height. I saw some used ones on craigslist for about $35 so not too expensive.
– The lamps still need some love. The bases are in good shape but the lampshades have seen better days. I’m thinking about wrapping them in fabric or something. Stay tuned…
– I did not get around to changing the light fixture in this room yet, but someday I will. Thankfully the one in there is innocuous. Next time I go to IKEA I’ll probably pick up one of the ones I mentioned in this post
– Eventually, much further down the road, I will refinish the hardwood floors.
Overall, it’s an improvement over the former storage room that it was, but not by far.