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19 Cheap Halloween Decorations for Apartments

By: Joanna Dorman
October 16, 2019

Ready to make Halloween around your place a little spookier? We're excited to help you get your scary on! Quick reminder, though: If you're living in an apartment, you'll want to check with your community to see what’s allowed before you begin exploring apartment decorating ideas for any holiday, including Halloween.

Learning how to decorate an apartment can be a great experience. Decorating an apartment for the holidays, especially for Halloween, is just plain fun. 

Creating the ultimate faux frightful experience will take some planning and creative thought. But the result will make it well worth the effort and the extra clean-up after the fun.

You don't have to spend a lot of money decorating for Halloween. There are ways to add to a frightful experience that cost little or nothing at all. You can also implement other ideas on the cheap and reuse them year after year.

All the cheap Halloween decoration ideas we’ve included here are budget-friendly and will great even in the smallest apartments!

1. Spiders, Spiders, Everywhere

Big hairy black spiders, tiny hairless spiders, and spiders of all sorts fit perfectly in any room you’re decorating for Halloween. Place them in unexpected places for maximum scare effect.

2. Spiders Make Webs

Of course, you wouldn't want spiders without webs, and they too come in all sizes. From little ones that you can use as coasters to massive webs to adorn the wall or hang from the ceiling, the iconic look of a spider web is unmistakable. It’s hair-raising when you include it in Halloween decorations for a small apartment. 

3. Even More Spiders

Need more spider decorating ideas? How about hanging them from the ceiling with an invisible, lightweight fishing line? If you touch them, these jumpy spiders will appear to sail through the air. That’ll make for cringe-worthy human/spider interaction.

4. Twinkle Lights

Mini light strings have become "must-haves" for holiday decorating. They can add life to your Halloween decor. These tiny light strings are so flexible that you can twist them in among other decorations. They’ll make for a lively, surprising addition to your table.

5. Liven Up Your Dining Table

When you're decorating with ghosts and ghouls, don't forget the dining table or buffet table. You can use disposable paper table coverings that are as gory as you can stand. You can also scatter the top of the table with creepy creatures like spiders and bats.

6. What About the Bats?

Buy bats by the bag at the craft store or make your own from felt. Bats are creepy, clingy, and just right for Halloween decorating. These floppy-winged creatures are sure to add that oh, so delicious spine-tingling touch of fear to your apartment decor, wherever you hang them.

7. Wild Witches on the Balcony

When it comes to decorating your apartment balcony for Halloween or any holiday, be sure you understand precisely what the rules of your apartment complex are. You'll want to know the landlord will welcome all decorations. Make sure of that before going all out with witches and goblins on the balcony or spider webs covering your front door from top to bottom!

8. Fiberfill can be Fun

When looking for budget-friendly Halloween decorations, the most inexpensive bags of fabric store fiberfill can be your best friend. It's handy for creating cobwebs from the floor to the ceiling. 

You can also use it to fill out those ghostly apparitions that look too tall and skinny. You're likely to find lots of ways to use this cheap and versatile material.

9. Black Lace Can Add a Little Ghastly Glamour

You can use black lace fabric and black lace trim to decorate glasses, vases, and all sorts of other ordinary items around your home. This slightly glamorous addition will please any fashionable witch as you amp up your rooms with Halloween charm.

10. Use Black Netting or Tulle for Ambience

Drape this relatively inexpensive fabric in many areas to add to your room's dark and gloomy atmosphere. When the lights are low, you'll be amazed at how many ways you can use this lightweight material to create interesting depth and shadows.

11. Light Bulbs for Color

Exchange the regular light bulbs in your living room for colorful ones in Halloween-related hues. This will add an air of mystery to the space. This might be the costliest of our cheap decoration ideas. However, with care, these bulbs will last for many years.

12. Ghostly Balloons

Hang cheesecloth-draped balloons from the ceiling for a ghostly decoration that’ll sway as you walk around. This is another Halloween decoration idea that won’t take up any floor space in a small apartment. You might even scare yourself with the unexpected movement of these ghosts!

13. Skulls in the Cellar

Skull-shaped indoor Halloween decorations can bring a scary vibe to interiors. There are a lot to choose from, including wax skulls and skull rings that are always popular with kids. 

Maybe there's an empty spot at the end of the hall that would be perfect for staging a vampy vignette. For instance, you could recreate a scene from an old black and white movie where they discovered a pile of skulls in the moldy cellar of an old mansion.

14. Don't Forget the Pumpkins

When it comes to these icons of fall, you have lots of options beyond trekking out to the pumpkin patch to choose a massive one that's just right for a jack-o-lantern. Consider choosing a less than perfect real pumpkin. That’ll add a scary, misshapen look to your decor. You'll find pumpkins in every size, color, and price range to add to Halloween tablescapes and other decorations at your local stores.

Important note: Be sure to dispose of pumpkins and other Halloween decorations for apartments responsibly when they are past their prime. Old pumpkins belong in the dumpster, not in the landscape or on the walkway. 

15. Trick or Treat Buckets as Décor

When searching for cheap Halloween decorations, tap into creative uses for those budget-friendly, lightweight trick-or-treat baskets you'll find at most stores. Of course, they're great for holding candy and other treats. But you can also fill them with flowers or fruit on the buffet table or party favors at the door.

16. Cast Ghostly Shadows

Speaking of cheap Halloween decorations, here’s one that won’t cost you anything, unless you count a small amount of battery life. Use a flashlight to cast ghoulish shadows by shining it on ghosts, witches, and skeletons. What a fun way to "decorate" a blank wall!

17. Window Wonders

If your landlord allows it, you can find lots of cheap Halloween decorations that you can stick to the insides of windows. These decor items add some easily removable, ghoulish holiday spirit. You’ll be able to see them from both the kitchen and the sidewalk. 

Use these pull-off decals as you would stick-on snowflakes in winter. They shouldn't leave behind any unsightly residue that you’ll need to clean up.

18. Candy Corn and Other Nostalgic Elements

Black licorice, jellied orange slices, and colorful candy corn have been mainstays of Halloween treats for years. They can evoke fun memories of trick-or-treating as a child. 

And what's Halloween without creepy, ghostly music and other sounds? Add these nostalgic elements to your collection of Halloween apartment decorating ideas to amp up the scary vibe.

19. Skeletons in the Closet

This is the ultimate in cheap Halloween decorating ideas. Pull those skeletons and other creepy decorations out of the closet. Use your imagination to use them in a different and perhaps more exciting way! 

What are your favorite budget halloween decorations? Show us by tweeting us @ApartmentList!

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Joanna is a freelance writer at Apartment List. She has over 16 years of experience creating interior design, furnishings, home decor, and home improvement content. Read More
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