Back to Renting

Gift Guide: 10 great gifts for renters

Two friends exchange gifts Zolo guide

During the holiday season, it can be tough knowing what to get your friends who rent. What do they need? What do they want? How can you help them make the most of their space, without tearing the place — that isn’t theirs — apart.

Here’s what you can do give your renter friends a bit of that Christmas cheer this 2018 holiday season:

1. Juniper Ridge Smudge kit ($20+):
Juniper Ridge Smudge Kit

Have friends who just moved into a new space? A great housewarming gift this holiday season would be a smudge kit, complete with Sage, Mugwart and Cedar to help them rid their new space of old demons. If you feel like your friends could use a little cleansing then this is the gift for them! 

2. Krups Coffee Grinder ($30):
Krups Coffee Grinder Crate & Barrel Zolo Gift Guide 2018

Not only are coffee beans expensive, but if you buy them pre-ground then the beans lose their freshness by the millisecond. If you have friends who enjoy a good cup but don’t have a whole lot of space, this Krups Coffee Grinder from Crate & Barrel is a great way to ensure that every glass is just as fresh as the last. It grinds up to three ounces of coffee beans in seconds and its unique oval design and efficient stainless steel blades ensure uniform grinding. It can also be used to grind spices, herbs, nuts, grains and more with the press of its lid-activated switch.

3. Ryobi Drywall Repair ($33)
Ryobi Drywall repair Zolo Gift Guide 2018

Granted, this one is a bit more practical, but it might just save your friend’s life (or, at least, their security deposit). If you’ve been eyeballing that hole in the wall from your last time coming over, this repair it can ensure that they fix things up by the New Year.

4. Foodie Ornament Bundle ($45)

Drake General store food ornaments

Do your friends have a Christmas tree that needs a more festive upgrade? This kit from the iconic Drake General Store has a set of ornaments is a great gift for the holiday season for any friend who just can’t get enough fast-food drive-throughs. In any event, you can now give your friends the gift of good taste in music!

5. Seedlip ($45)
Seedlip Gift Guide Zolo 2018

For your foodie friends, consider getting them a gift that puts them on the express train to the next hip trend: distilled non-alcoholic spirits. At the front lines of this is Seedlip, purveyors of fine quality spirits that aren’t even spirits at all. Rather, these distilled beverages use the finest ingredients and herbs to create unique and refreshing beverages. For instance, Garden 108 offers tasters a chance to sample hand-picked peas and homegrown hay from company founder Ben Branson’s farm; it’s described as a celebration of the English countryside (and the company suggests serving it with tonic and sugar snap peas). Other flavours are available from this UK-based company.

7. BottleLoft ($50)

BottleLoft Zolo Gift Guide Renters 2018

Tired of all the wasted space in your fridge after the beer bottles go in to chill?  There’s a solution. offers the BottleLoft — magnetic strips that are installed in your fridge and hold your bottles upright (allowing you to store the trays of appy’s underneath). Perfect for those looking for both a conversation starter and a way to save room!

8. Healing mushrooms ($90)

Now that cannabis is legalized, people are starting to take more notice of natural remedies and one popular (but not yet mainstream) option is healing mushrooms. This means that even if your landlord is totally opposed to natural healing remedies, your friend can still tap into earthy goodness. While there are many options to choose from a good entry is through a blend. Host Defense offers the MyCommunity capsules, which blend 17 mushroom species into one formula that help balance immunity and offer peak performance. The company is partly owned by Paul Stamets, a renowned professor of fungi and one of the most popular guests on Joe Rogan’s podcast, The Joe Rogan Experience. (Listen to the podcast…it will blog your mind!)

9. A Chance to Win a Dream Home! ($100)

Zolo Holiday Guide Home Lottery win a dream home Canmore Early Prize

Want to give a gift that may just keep on giving? Consider buying your friend or family member a charity lottery ticket. Known as mega-lotteries, many charity lotteries offer dream home, vacation homes or condos as a grand prize. Odds of winning something are far more favourable than with provincial or national lottery tickets, so that $100 ticket may just turn into a $1-million prize! Plus, a portion of your money will go to a great cause. For a list of the 41 Canadian charities that offer property as a prize, go to How to Win a Dream Home.

Charity Home Lotteries with the Best Odds of Winning

10. Bluetooth Food Freshness Detector ($123)

Bluetooth freshness detector Zolo Renter Gift Guide 2018

“Does this chicken smell good to you?” If you have renter friends who are more often out than home, they could definitely use this Bluetooth Food Freshness Detector. It works by “sniffing” meat, fish and poultry and tells you if your food is safe to cook and eat. This small handheld wand detects the VOC gases produced when food spoils and sends one of three results to your smartphone: “Fresh,” “Cook Well” or “Spoiled.”

This holiday season, spreading the joy around is the name of the game! While you can’t necessarily make huge changes to your home when you’re renting, you can add a lot of personal charm if you know where to look.

For more, check out the 5 ways to maximize your rewards points and the 10 best gifts for homeowners or downsizers. If you feel lucky, check out our list of mega-lotteries — charity lotteries that offer a dream home (or vacation home) as a grand prize. Who knows? Maybe your gift this season will be the keys to a brand new home!

Image of Max Specht

Max Specht

Nothing makes Max Specht happier than telling people where to go and what to do—and not in an authoritative sense. He prides himself on being a tour guide par excellence and has the recommendations to prove it.

You might also like

Mortgage Default Guide

Learn all about home mortgages – how to get approved, how much mortgage you can afford, and what happens when you can't make mortgage payments.

using calculator

Emergency Preparedness Guide

When it comes to emergency management, the best strategy is to create a simple action plan that protects your family in any catastrophic situation.

emergency management

Homesteading Guide

Increase your self-reliance by easily adopting homesteading principles and practises with tips on how to garden, canning, and urban homesteading.

Staple urban homestead red currant jam Zolo

Renter’s Guide

Find information on renting in Canada, including tenant and landlord responsibilities, renting with pets, and how to find a roommate.

House for rent