The Most Renter-Friendly Thing at IKEA, According to an IKEA Employee

updated Mar 2, 2020
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Credit: Sarah Crowley/Apartment Therapy

To call me an avid IKEA shopper is an understatement. I’ve lugged numerous light fixtures and adhesive hooks, bookshelves and wardrobes, and a bed frame into verious apartments over the years. At one point, one of my homes in Chicago was almost entirely outfitted with IKEA goodies. I just can’t get enough, and it’s totally justified.

IKEA is a renter’s paradise: It’s reasonably priced, you can get everything you need in one store, and you generally can put everything together at home. As confusing as that is sometimes, it also means your new entertainment center can easily be carried up to your third-floor walk-up, around a tight corner, and through your narrow doorway.

Plus, many IKEA products are multitaskers in disguise. That’s why IKEA hacks became such a thing. Think: Picture ledges repurposed to hold spices or a plastic bag holder to contain errant rolls of wrapping paper.

But is there one item that stands out above all the rest in terms of utility for renters? To find out, I went straight to the source.

The Best IKEA Find for Renters Is the RÅSKOG Utility Cart

The company’s design spokesperson, Janice Simonsen, loves this item so much that she has multiple in her own home. (She just bought a new one in white, which she plans to use in her kitchen, because it matches her remodel.) It’s a deceptively simple product that you’ve surely heard of: the RÅSKOG cart. In case you’re not familiar, it’s a three-shelf utility cart on wheels that can be used in about a thousand different ways.

Credit: Devon Jarvis

“It’s perfect for a number of reasons,” Simonsen says. “It’s mobile, so it moves around a small space easily. It comes in four beautiful colors and can be used in virtually every room in an apartment. For example, it could be a toiletry cart in the bathroom, a towel and mini pantry in the kitchen, or it can hold office and art supplies by a work space. It can even be a nightstand in the bedroom.”

Personally, I’ve got a blue one that’s stuffed to the gills with skeins of yarn, standing upright so none of them roll out. (That’s in addition to a small set of drawers from IKEA that are also stuffed with yarn—because as every crafter knows, you can never have too much of your favorite material.)

Credit: Devon Jarvis

In addition to its versatility, you can feel good about the return of your security deposit when you move out. “Nothing needs to be attached to a wall, so [there are] no issues with rental restrictions,” Simonsen says.

But the best part about this car might be its price: At $29.99, it’s an affordable, malleable purchase you can make work for you. and feel good about the return of your security deposit when you move out.

Related: 10 Smart Ways to Use IKEA’s RÅSKOG Cart in the Kitchen

Now that I’ve started to embroider, I see another one in my apartment in the near future to hold all those supplies. This time, though, I might opt for the last of the four colors: a sleek black.