Anything can be rented
I have a confession to make, I was once a renter. No, not just a house or apartment renter, although I did that too. No, I was once a furniture renter.
Anyone who knows me now would find that the person who reads Architectural Digest and real estate advertisements like they were a best selling novel would never rent, of all things, furniture. But when you’re in your 20s, your standards are different or non-existent.
It’s not uncommon for people who live in major cities and move frequently because of job commitments to rent everything from furniture to electronics. When I was at this stage of my life, I rented a furnished apartment and rented a television.
Can you believe that my roommate and I couldn’t get together enough money between us to actually buy a television? I don’t remember any more what the weekly cost was for a small black and white television with rabbit ears that we were never home to watch. All I remember is that we did it.
Renting furniture and expensive electronics is not really as crazy as it sounds. In fact, I can think of two scenarios that would be beneficial to do so right here on Anna Maria. Let’s say you just purchased a small condo at a great price with the intention of making it a seasonal rental.
You may have gotten a fabulous deal on the purchase of the condo, but after the closing costs you may not have the $3,000 or $4,000 you’ll need to even modestly furnish the space. Time to get on line and find a company that rents furniture, and, believe me, it won’t be hard to do.
Until you do an Internet search of furniture rental companies you won’t believe what you can get for as little as $20 a week. Many of the companies also have renting with an option to buy, which would give you time to get your finances together after closing on your investment condo.
One company I found was offering a sofa, loveseat, two lamps, two end tables, cocktail table, area rug, throw, and five table accessories for $39.99 a week. They claimed the value of this furniture was $2,500. You could be up and running in a few days collecting rent.
Another time when renting furniture would be helpful is if you have a property for sale that you and your furniture have already vacated. Most real estate brokers feel that tastefully furnished homes show better than empty ones.
Interestingly enough, properties even show larger with furniture than empty. Most buyers have a problem imagining how their furniture would look in an empty room but can draw comparisons when the room is already furnished. This goes back to the theory of staging a home for sale, which is an industry unto itself, sometimes involving moving actual families into a property to help it sell.
Renting furniture requires entering into some type of short-term contract, so be prepared for that, and I’m sure credit checks and deposits will also be required. And there are many different types and levels of furniture rentals, catering to every pocketbook from high-end clients to college students.
Renting instead of buying furniture, maybe not so crazy after all. There is always a time in your life when renting is the right thing to do, even if it’s furniture. I’m just grateful that my time is long gone.