Ahoy! Is your apartment empty? Are you looking to rent furniture in NYC? Then welcome, you’re in just the right place.
At first glance, choosing to rent your furniture may seem like a perfect solution! After all, most digital nomads and millennial workers prefer to own less and experience more. Lots of people imagine that renting furniture is obviously better because it costs you less money up front, and ultimately someone else is responsible for it. Sounds good, right?
However, before you rent furniture in NYC, there are a few things you should know first. Renting is not always the best way to save money or build the lifestyle you really want! It may solve some of your problems at first, but in the long run it may not be the ideal solution it, either for your apartment or your bank account.
Our Evaluation Process
So, here is an overview of all the pros and cons of different furnishing companies. Four are rental companies and one is not.
We review offerings from Feather, Cort, Furnishr, Mobley, and Fernish. Unfortunately, Fernish does not cover NYC, but all the other companies do. Each company offers a unique blend of three factors: price, quality, and efficiency. Ultimately, the choice to rent or buy will depend on your budget, how relatively stable your housing is, and how much time you have to oversee the furnishing process. Take into account how long you can commit to renting the furniture for, as shorter leases are costlier. And be sure to take into account your personal squick factor, and read each company’s sanitization guideline thoroughly.
We hope this guide helps you make an informed decision! Whether you buy or rent your furniture in NYC, we’re excited for you to find some awesome furniture for your new place.
How long are you thinking of staying in the city?
How much money are you prepared to pay out?
What kind of quality do you want in your furniture?
How easy do you want the furnishing process to be?
Finally, what are your sustainability values?
Okay, so let’s break this down even further.
Four of these companies offer furniture for rent, with the option to rent-to-own. If you want to rent furniture in NYC, then only three of those companies will cover you (Feather, Cort, and Mobley). The final company, Furnishr, covers most of North America and offers outright purchase of furniture. Most of the rental companies have fair policies around damage. Most will be happy to fix up small scratches and get out stains, and all rental furniture has to undergo a robust sanitization process between rentals.
So now that you know the basics, let’s see if any of the scenarios below apply to you.
If you just moved to the city and started a new job, you might be a Type One: You are fairly location-insecure, and you don’t mind medium quality furniture with a fairly low monthly cost. If that’s you, then you might like Mobley or Feather. The major con is that you’re putting money into someone else’s pocket. Another drawback is that the lower quality furniture might make you feel like you’re living in an IKEA house, except the furniture doesn’t even belong to you. Pros? By renting furniture in NYC, you spend less money up front. Plus, someone else will take away your furniture whenever you decide to move.
Here’s another type of customer. Type Two: You like to keep a low environmental impact, but you’re working with a moderate budget. In this case, you should check out Feather or Furnishr. Feather is a rental company, but they’re committed to reducing plastic packaging and keeping furniture out of landfills. Furnishr is a comprehensive furnishing company, so you work with a designer and then purchase your items upfront. If you’re not sure about living in NYC in the future, then look at Feather. But if you aim to stay in the city, then choose Furnishr. Buying furniture can actually have a lower net environmental impact than renting. That’s due to the repetitive shipping, packaging, and sanitization processes required by rental companies. If you wanted to rent furniture in NYC to reduce your environmental impact, you may want to see how Furnishr compares.
Type Three: You’re busy, you’re ready to invest in quality pieces, and you’d rather spend a little more money upfront than deal with returning your furniture in the future. If this is you, Furnishr is the company for you. Whereas all companies on our list offer some kind of style consultation and set-up, Furnishr is the only one that works off your actual floor plan. They also coordinate a white glove delivery and clean up. Another perk? Furnishr works directly with manufacturers, so you get the absolute lowest price on the items you choose. Companies like Mobley and Feather base their rent-to-own prices on retail price, rather than manufacturer price. So, you’ll probably end up paying more for your items with rent-to-own than if you buy outright with Furnishr.
If you’re still feeling unsure, just think about what your future self wants. Big lights, big city….
Will your future self want to move cities every six months, leaving everything behind? Rent furniture in NYC.
Will your future self want to own high quality furniture, with the option to resell it if you move? Buy furniture in NYC.
Overall, rental companies can be a great stop-gap option for furnishing a place on quick notice. But “furniture flexibility” can also be overrated, especially if you don’t feel like putting money into someone else’s pocket just to have nice things. It can definitely start to feel a bit soulless to be surrounded by what is technically someone else’s furniture.
If you’re feeling the financial stress, we get it! You want to invest your hard earned cash in stuff you can actually afford, which will actually serve you in the long-term. So if you can’t afford all new furniture and you have the time to look around, then there’s no shame in thrifting. But if you don’t mind spending several hundred dollars a month to temporarily own nice-looking furniture, then have at it and don’t look back.
Either way, best of luck with your move!