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If I’m going to write about something this week, it’s going to be renter’s improvements. There are a lot of great things about renting: if something breaks and it’s not your fault, you get it repaired for free (or you’re supposed to), you can move relatively quickly without waiting for a house to sell… actually, those might be it. The improvements you can often make to a rental are cheap, fast, and give you a relatively big return on your investment. This weekend I made this crudely-constructed-but-sort-of-cute thing:

As you can see, my building is a drab gray box with bars on the windows. I also have no outdoor space, so I’ve been thinking about building some container gardens for a while. To test the viability of this idea, I asked the nice folks at the local lumberyard to cut this board into pieces for me. It cost $2. Since the wood is so thin, I couldn’t really use wood screws, so I used to leftover combination of long nails and elbow brackets to unintentionally simulate what it would look like if a small child drew a picture of a window box (let’s just say my joints are not flush). Some holes drilled in the bottom, plus some hooks screwed into the windowsill and some eyes for to hook, and I had myself a ready bed for some zinnias.

I acquired said zinnias, along with some tomatoes and jasmine for future boxes, at this place on Fairfax called First Image Nursery, which I discovered by accident while getting my oil changed across the street. This place is huge, cheap, and super friendly. The people on yelp think so too.

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