The first thing that probably pops into your mind when you hear the word “corporate housing” is a businessperson decked out in their professional suit, briefcase in one hand and a plain black suitcase in the other, obviously on a business trip and checking into an apartment.
Corporate housing isn’t just for working professionals, it also provides those looking for a short-term rental, whether you’re exploring a new location before moving, taking an internship for a few months, or simply in between homes. So, a corporate apartment may be the right place for your needs. Let’s find out.
What are corporate apartments?
A corporate apartment, or corporate housing, is a short-term rental designed for business travelers, independent contractors, college students, and persons on long-term vacations, among others. They’re a temporary housing option that gives people the opportunity to rent a fully furnished apartment for a short time.
Corporate housing companies typically offer flexible, short-term leases for prospective tenants. This means you won’t be tied down to a long-term lease, especially if you’re going to be living in an area for only a few weeks or months. These units are fully furnished apartments, so you won’t have to purchase or rent furniture for the space. Additionally, utility costs are often included in the monthly rent cost.
What are the differences between corporate and furnished apartments?
Corporate housing and furnished apartments are similar in a lot of ways, but they do have slight differences. They both come fully furnished with common household items like beds, couches, and dining utensils, just to name a few. They also offer short-term lease options, ranging anywhere from weeks to months.
However, furnished apartments come in many variations – fully furnished, furnished, and partially furnished, which signifies how much the apartment is furnished. Corporate housing has all the things you would need for your short-term housing option. A furnished apartment may also offer you the option for a longer lease, typically longer than two to three months, unlike corporate housing, which is meant for shorter-term stays.
Can anyone rent a “corporate apartment?”
Yes, anyone can rent a corporate apartment, even if you aren’t on a business trip. While they may initially appeal to the corporate traveler, this short-term rental option can work great for anyone deciding whether to move to a city, stay in an area on a long vacation, or for other reasons.
Reasons to rent a corporate apartment
Besides the obvious business travelers, there are many other people who may benefit from a corporate housing option. For example, if you’re a college intern staying in Seattle, WA, for the summer, this can be a great option to consider rather than subleasing a unit or renting an unfurnished apartment. If you’re new to a city and deciding where you want to live, are in between selling your home and buying a new place, or have been displaced by a natural disaster, this temporary housing option may be a good option.
Pros and cons of corporate apartments
No matter what types of apartments you’re looking at – short-term rental or long-term lease – there are pros and cons for them all. And corporate housing isn’t exempt from those pros and cons.
Pros of corporate apartments
Flexible: Corporate housing is more flexible than traditional apartments, offering short-term leases ranging from day-to-day, weekly, to monthly. If you’re only going to be in an area for two weeks, this can be a great choice.
More cost-effective: Compared to long-term vacation rentals, extended stay hotels, or renting an apartment for longer than you need to stay, corporate apartments can be a more cost-effective decision. And if you’re moving to an area or in-between residences, you don’t have to factor in moving costs, purchasing furniture, and more.
Move-in ready: No matter your situation, you won’t have to worry about furnishing one of these apartments. You’ll have all the comforts of home, from a full kitchen to a furnished bedroom and living area.
Centrally located: Many corporate apartment communities are located in the city center, business districts, or popular neighborhoods. This can be especially nice if you’re renting an apartment for work-related travel or just checking out a city before deciding to relocate.
Cons of corporate apartments
Apartments of all kinds have their downsides, even short-term rentals. So let’s look at some of the cons of corporate housing options.
More expensive: Because these apartments are fully furnished and have all the amenities, they’re probably going to be more expensive than standard apartments. However, if you’re looking for short-term rentals that aren’t extended-stay hotels, then this probably isn’t too much of a negative.
Options for short-term leases: Depending on your reason for staying in corporate housing, this may not be an issue. However, if you are unsure how long you’re going to be in a city or if you need to extend your lease, this may not be an option. Chances are, another tenant is leasing the unit after you move out. These units are seen as temporary housing, so you may not be able to extend your lease if you have to stay longer.
Recurring moving costs: If you move around a lot, or are testing out renting in different city neighborhoods, renting corporate apartments, or even fully furnished apartments, the costs can add up quickly.
Signing a lease sight-unseen: In most cases, you’ll be signing your lease sight-unseen so that the unit is yours before you arrive at your destination. While similar to booking a hotel room, you may only have an idea of what the space looks like from online photos, 3d tours, or possibly a video tour with the leasing agent or landlord. Make sure you ask questions to avoid potential rental scams before signing the lease.
How to find corporate housing in your area
Corporate housing is pretty easy to find, much like looking for a furnished apartment. And Redfin can help you find one. Here’s how.
1. Go to Redfin.com and click “Rent.” You’ll type into the Search Bar either the city’s name or the zip code (for example, Chicago, IL) where you’d like to begin looking for a corporate apartment. Press enter.
2. Near the top of the next page, on the right side, you will see “All filters.” Click on that.
3. Scroll to the bottom section that says “Amenities.” Select “Furnished” and then select “Short Term.” Press “See all homes.” That’s it. All the apartments meeting basic corporate housing criteria will show up and you can begin your search.