It’s spooky season—the time of year when the leaves change colors, the temperatures drop, and things get a little more eerie. Halloween is a fun and festive time of year, with something for everyone, from fun costumes to haunted houses and hayrides.
There’s no better way to get into the spooky spirit of the season than by decorating your home. And just because you have a rental in Northern Colorado doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy all the decorations and turn your house or apartment into the most haunted and festive house on the block.
Here are 18 rental-friendly ways to decorate for Halloween:
1. Prep your pumpkins
No Halloween décor is complete without pumpkins. Pumpkins and gourds are easy to come by in the fall season and are a fairly inexpensive way to add color and festivity to your rental. Put a few on top of the table for a centerpiece, use them as bookends on the bookshelf, or place them on an entry table or floating shelf.
Get in touch with your inner artist and carve a pumpkin into a jack-o-lantern. To keep your rental safe, opt for a battery-powered tea light in the pumpkin instead of an open candle.
Think outside the box with pumpkins that aren’t typical orange or that have unique shapes—white, green, or pink pumpkins can be an unexpected decoration. It doesn’t take much to have a big impact.
2. Go natural
Get outside and be inspired by the fall colors and natural elements.
Fall colors are beautiful and make great decorative elements. Go for a walk to collect real natural elements, like fall leaves or sticks.
For a less messy approach, you can buy fake leaves or corn stalks at the store or pumpkin patch. Put a handful of colorful fall leaves in a clear container or inside a picture frame for instant fall art.
Decorate your front door or porch with corn stalks and hay bales. Bringing a touch of the outdoors inside can make your rental feel cozy and festive.
3. No porch? No problem
Most apartments don’t have porches for the traditional Halloween setup, but you can still display your Halloween decorations and jack-o-lanterns.
Decorate the entryway with a garland around your front door and a Halloween-themed wreath.
The door itself is a blank slate for fun decorations. Many stores sell kits to decorate a door, or you can do it yourself with a disposable tablecloth or Halloween-themed wrapping paper.
Turn your front door into a monster or mummy with crepe paper or construction paper.
4. Take advantage of your outdoor space
Your rental might not have a lot of outdoor space, but you can still make the most of it.
Add spooky pumpkins or skeletons to your balcony or patio. Cover your bushes with fake cobwebs and battery-powered lights.
If you have the space, you can even put a Halloween inflatable on your balcony to take your decorations to the next level.
5. Turn down the lights
The fastest way to set the mood for something spooky is to do it with lighting.
The most obvious Halloween lighting is with a jack-o-lantern—just be sure to use a flashlight or battery-powered candle if you have them indoors. Add string lights or candles around your rental for an eerie glow.
You can even switch out your lightbulbs for orange or purple bulbs for a festive and eerie light.
6. Use your windows
Think of the windows as your way to share your decorations with everyone passing by. Don’t let these large blank spaces go to waste.
Window decorations can be customized to fit the theme of your décor. Going for a friendly, festive look? Decorate your windows with bright window decals or a giant jack-o-lantern face made of construction paper or window paint.
Want a spookier feel? Use contact paper to make the windows look broken and haunted, or have spooky faces peeking out the sides of the window.
7. Bring in the bats and spiders
Insects are a popular and spooky Halloween theme. Build your own spider web by connecting string and rope together for an instant statement piece.
Attach the large spider web to your exterior wall or balcony, or place it across your ceiling or wall. Add a large spider or an army of smaller spiders for a fun and creepy feel.
Make your own bats by cutting them out from black cardstock, rolling the edges to look like real wings, and using removable tape or sticky tack to attach them to a wall.
A few bats around the house can be a fun addition, or you can make a huge group to have flying around the entire room.
8. Stay monochromatic
Orange may be the favorite color of the season, but sticking to a black and white color scheme can be equally chic and festive.
Start by looking around your apartment to see what black and white things you can already use, including blankets, curtains, and knickknacks.
For a budget-friendly version, find items at a discount or thrift store, such as bottles, books, and skeletons, and paint them black and white.
Place the items on shelves around your entire apartment for a quirky and coordinated feel.
9. Try the potions.
Turn your rental into a potions lab for a unique approach to Halloween décor.
Set up a cauldron in the corner and add dry ice or a fog machine to make it look like it is brewing. Create your own potions bottles by taking empty bottles in all sizes and adding printable labels, paint, or texture.
Place the bottles around the apartment or together on a shelf. You can even fill bottles or containers with slime and other spooky-looking ingredients.
10. Think about textiles
In a rental, you might not be able to paint or make permanent décor changes, but you can still make a big impact.
One of the easiest ways to create a festive apartment is to switch out the textiles. Change your normal throw pillows for Halloween pillows.
If you don’t have room to store extra pillows, you can just use Halloween pillow covers over your existing pillows.
Add a festive welcome mat and rug. Switch out your usual throw blankets and hand towels with Halloween versions that are as functional as they are festive.
Taking advantage of textiles makes your home cozy and adds a warm feeling of cuddling up to celebrate Halloween.
11. Make it all about the art
Want a great Halloween feel without spending a lot of time or money? Make it all about the art.
Replace the pictures in your existing picture frames with Halloween prints. The internet is full of free or inexpensive Halloween art and posters that you can print at home. In small frames or big, Halloween prints can make an instant impact.
You don’t even need a frame—print a series of Halloween photos and stick them straight to the wall for a festive gallery wall, or print a large poster for the door or a blank wall. Art is totally customizable, so you can make it creepy or cute.
For a creepy feel, replace photos or your friends and family with old fashioned pictures to make your rental feel like a haunted house.
For a more playful look, browse for clever fall sayings or fun Halloween faces.
12. Hang it from the ceiling
The empty ceiling is a great and often overlooked place to showcase Halloween décor.
Hanging items from the ceiling adds a magical and spooky feel to any rental. Hang witches’ hats or candles made of rolled up construction paper with tissue paper flames to make your entire home feel magical.
You can even hang plastic spiders or pumpkins. Add to the appeal by using white or clear string so the items look like they are floating.
13. Make a fake mantel
A mantel is a built-in place for holiday decorations, but mantels can be hard to come by in rentals. Instead, make your own by installing a floating shelf and covering it with Halloween decorations. Some shelves don’t even require screws in the walls.
If you don’t have a shelf, try turning a bookshelf or counter into a makeshift mantel. Your faux mantel can become the focal point of your Halloween décor.
Add a festive garland and cover your shelf with Halloween artwork, pumpkin, candles, and more.
14. Create a crime scene
A real crime scene will likely cause you to lose your security deposit, but a fake crime scene can be easily cleaned up in a rental and still add to creepy Halloween festivities.
A simple roll of caution tape spread around the doors and windows can instantly transform a space.
Add a chalk outline with masking tape or chalk on the floor, and put fake blood in the shower or sink.
15. Turn it into a graveyard
Bring the undead to your rental with a spooky graveyard.
You can buy tombstones or easily make your own by cutting out large pieces of cardboard and painting them with clever names.
Put tombstones all around your home and dim the lights, or take your graveyard outside with tombstones on your porch or balcony.
For an extra spooky feeling, hang a ghost decoration or white sheet in the corner to create the appearance of a lurking ghost.
16. Find festive flowers
Fall might not bring the bright blossoms of spring, but it’s still the time for a wide variety of beautiful flowers.
Mums come in a variety of fall colors like red, orange, and purple. A bouquet of mums on the table or large buckets of mums in every color on the porch create a welcoming and Halloween-centered feel.
If you want a creepier look, try putting a bouquet of black roses on your table or dying white carnations green or purple and putting them on the mantel or the makeshift mantle previously mentioned.
17. Bunches of balloons
Balloons are an inexpensive and quick way to completely transform a space.
Build a balloon arch out of orange and black balloons to put around your doorway, or line your hallway with long strings of balloons.
Large helium balloons are a fun addition to a mantel or placed around the room. Choose colors that match your other Halloween décor—black and white for a chic, monochromatic look, or orange and purple for a quirky, colorful theme.
The only downside of decorating with balloons is that they won’t last the entire season, so plan ahead and use them for a party or to surprise trick-or-treaters.
18. Set the table
Don’t forget about your table! Festive decorations can transform any dining or coffee table into a Halloween focal point.
Start with a tablecloth or table runner, then layer pumpkins, leaves, candles, skulls, or witches’ hats. Decorating a table is open to creativity and using whatever you have around your apartment.
Keep your table decorated during the entire season, or use it to serve food at a dinner party!
And once your rental is decorated, don’t forget to enjoy the season with festive treats. This easy pumpkin fluff dip is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser:
- 1 (16 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
- 1 (5 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix
- 1 (15 ounce) can pure pumpkin
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
Mix together vanilla pudding mix, pumpkin, and pumpkin pie spice in a large bowl. Fold in the thawed whipped topping. Chill until ready to serve. Choose your favorite fall foods to dip, including apple slices, graham crackers, or gingersnap cookies.
No matter if you like spooky decorations or fun and colorful celebrations, Halloween has something for everyone. The options for decorating your rental for Halloween are endless—with a little creativity, you can turn any space into a festive Halloween experience!