Renting a fully-furnished space has pros and cons. Both are largely centered around money, such as moving expenses, security deposits, and furniture purchases. Keep reading for the list of pros and cons of renting a furnished space.
Furnished vs. Unfurnished Spaces
A furnished space is a space available for rent or lease that already has the necessary furniture for a living space, including living room furniture, a bed, kitchen table, etc. Appliances are typically included too. Fully-furnished spaces are most common in vacation homes and short-term properties. If you’re considering renting a furnished space, it’s important to note that the definition of “furnished” can vary from one landlord to the next — so, be sure you are clear on what comes with the space.
Unfurnished spaces, on the other hand, come with no furniture. You will have to supply all of your own furniture and sometimes appliances. Unfurnished spaces are typically apartments or houses for rent with 12-month leases. However, private owners leasing their properties sometimes leave their personal belongings, including sofas, beds, and dressers for their tenants’ convenience. Left-behind furnishings can be good or bad, depending on the type of renter involved. If you’re considering moving into a furnished space, our lists below of the pros and cons of renting a furnished space might help you with the decision-making process.
Pros of Renting a Furnished Space
There are some advantages when it comes to renting a furnished space over an unfurnished space. Below, we’ve provided the list of pros of renting a space that includes furniture.
1. Diminished Moving Expenses
Without furniture to transport, you will only be responsible for transporting clothes and small personal items to your new home. Your moving expenses will drop significantly without the cost of a large moving truck or professional movers. A professional interstate move of around 1,400 miles can cost anywhere from $5,000 to $15,000 for 5,500 to 20,500 pounds of belongings, per popular real estate website Zillow. Moving costs can become so large that they cost as much as annual rent. For example, renters moving to Dallas face a median list price of $1,325 per month or $15,900 per year. Assuming a family with 20,500 pounds of goods and furniture is moving to a median-priced rental in Dallas, they will spend only $900 more on yearly rent than their initial moving cost.
If you’ve ever moved, you know that taping up boxes and covering furniture is exhausting. Fully-furnished rentals, on the other hand, eradicate the physically grueling process of packing and lifting. Fully-furnished rentals are also convenient for those who travel often. Fewer belongings to make arrangements for moving or storage means less time wasted between adventures.
3. Fresh Start
Moving is a great time to purge unwanted, dated, or damaged items from your life. The more you move, the less you should accumulate. Even if you currently own your own furniture, you can host a garage or moving sale and make a little cash or consider selling it to a used furniture store. You can also consider donating your used furniture to charitable organizations, as many charitable donations are tax-deductible, per the IRS website. Once you’ve downsized, renting a furnished space introduces you to interior styles you may not have seen before. Immersing yourself in an alternative setting might open your tastes to traditional, modern, or eclectic home design.
Cons of Renting a Furnished Space
If you’re considering renting a furnished space, there are some cons that you should be aware of. Below, we’ve compiled the list of cons of renting a furnished space to help you make an informed decision.
1. Increased Rent
Fully-furnished rentals typically rent for more than empty comparable units. Landlords spend their income on providing furnishings and usually replace or refinish pieces every few years, depending on wear and tear. The increased rent for these furnished units reflects these additional expenses incurred by the landlord.
2. Larger Security Deposit
Security deposits are common in both furnished and unfurnished spaces. However, the security deposit for a fully-furnished unit is often higher than an unfurnished unit because more than just the space (walls, carpet, flooring, etc.) can become damaged. If you rent a fully-furnished unit, then the landlord needs a security deposit large enough to cover repairs or replacements for furniture, which can get costly. Security deposits are typically paid back to the renter at the end of the lease if no damage was incurred during the rental period. But it’s still more money that is due upfront.
3. Impersonal Touches
As the saying goes, “There’s no place like home.” But it can be difficult to feel at home among your landlord’s belongings unless you’ve lived in their home for an extended period of time. If you’re always on the move, furnishing and décor may be the only consistency in your surroundings. It’s enjoyable to own special pieces that provide comfort and a sense of home. You also may not like your landlord’s taste. If you rent a fully-furnished unit or house, you might end up with a bed that’s too soft and a couch that’s too hard. Or you might not like the color of the furniture or the theme of the room or house. But, as a renter, there will be very little you can do to change or update the décor.
4. Future Expenses
Unless you plan to reside in fully-furnished rentals forever, you’re going to need to purchase furniture sooner or later. If you do decide to purchase a home after living in a fully-furnished rental, you’ll need to shop for your furniture all at once. Furnishing a new room can be costly and even more so if you’re furnishing an entire house. Time crunches may prohibit you from finding great deals at department stores or waiting for sales. If you do opt for a fully-furnished rental, it’s a good idea to set aside some money every month to start building a future furniture fund. Alternately, you can look into our articles about major furniture stores that offer financing and furniture stores with easy credit approval.
There are pros and cons of choosing to rent a furnished space. Pros include fewer moving expenses, convenience for an on-the-go lifestyle, and a chance to start fresh by purging old and unwanted furniture and belongings. Cons of renting a fully-furnished space include increased rent and security deposits, impersonal touches, and future expenses if you decide to make the switch to an unfurnished space one day. You might also be interested in the article: Cheapest Ways to Move Across Country (With Numbers)