You may think painting your rental is absolutely forbidden, however there are landlords that will allow you to paint the walls. Apartment Therapy's painting tips will help you transform your apartment from boring to fabulous in no time!
Before you do anything, it is absolutely non-negotiable that you get your landlord's permission. If they don't seem enthusiastic about the idea, ask them if they are comfortable picking from several color options. You can also ask your landlord if you can paint the walls but repaint them whatever color the landlord requests when you move out.
After you've gotten your landlord's approval, it's time to prep the walls. The walls need to be dusted and, if they are especially dirty, washed with a solution of baking soda, vinegar and warm water. If the current paint is cracked or peeling, you will have to spackle and sand. If you aren't sure if you need to sand your walls, put a piece of tape on the wall and then pull it off. If there's paint on the tape, you definitely need to sand.
Use painter's tape to keep your edges straight and prevent paint from getting onto ceiling or trim where you don't want it. When you're finished painting, remove the tape before the paint is completely dry to prevent peeling off the new paint with it.
After taping, it's time to prime the wall, a necessary step if your walls are uneven, have been patched, or are already painted a color other than white or light grey. Primer helps paint roll on evenly and will prevent the original color from peeking through. You can get tinted primer if you are using an especially saturated color.
Before breaking out the roller, you need to "cut in" with a brush to paint the corners and edges of the wall. After cutting in, you're ready to paint with a roller. Use a "W" pattern to make sure the paint is applied evenly.