Millennials are known as the renter generation, losing their sense of ownership as living costs rise and wages don’t. Gen X shares the sentiment as the budding furniture rental market targets the group for the reinvented furniture subscription service.
While the rent to own has widely been debunked as something to avoid because of the high markups, these short subscriptions are cost-efficient, clear to understand and convenient.
CORT, Feather and mobley are some of the services that have launched recently claiming to offer high-quality contemporary furniture through flexible subscriptions. An enticing deal and environmentally friendly, given the transient and uncertain nature of New York City apartment rentals.
“Buying a fancy coffee-table sounds like a great idea, but it might not fit your style or your room’s aesthetic if you decide to move into a new home down the road,” writes Katie Caraviello, editor of Millenial on the Move in a blog post.
However, like most new businesses’ emerging in the now trendy and “techy” landscape, the product is essential, but so is the experience and throughout the shopping experience. These services are available through well designed and easily navigatable apps and websites. It’s as easy as ordering food through your favorite food delivery app.
This is what Gen X has come to expect in a consumer environment where shopping is about the experience and getting the product into clicks or fewer. Short term subscriptions are perfect for the time-strapped individual who needs a couch but has too busy a schedule to go to the store and likely has no truck to take home because they take the train to work, which made the service a lifesaver for Fashion Blogger Dani Austin.
“This was a life-saver, not only because I could order everything online and the furniture was beautiful but because they also deliver and set up everything for you,” said Dani Austin, a college student and blogger.
Austin rented through Cort because it offers a student package, which starts at $99 a month, making it more affordable, and while the rental may be cheaper in the short term, costs can add up. Renting furniture is most efficient for short term periods such as a school term or temporary stint in a new area.
Due to the short term period, it might also be possible to splurge on some finer pieces since Casper mattresses, West Elm couches, and Joybird dressers may seem unattainable to the struggling NYC poet. However, with free delivery, installation and pick-up, the time and money on shipment and assembly can be allocated to nicer pieces.
With Feather, a Casper Wave mattress that would cost $2,295.00 for a Queen would cost $113 a month through Feather, accounting for the $19 membership fee, which discounts the rental to $94. If you’re not a member, the mattress would be rented for $323 a month with a three-month minimum.
Essentially you could rent the mattress for a year and a half, not including the base of course, before paying the full value of the mattress, which may be what you want to do if you’re picking up a short stint. However, most people own a mattress somewhere between 7 and 10 years.
While you should rent a matress with caution, most companies include a new cover and guarantee that used mattresses go through thorough cleaning processes.
If you fall for your furniture Feather allows you to buy any piece and convert rental fees to a payment toward the piece’s MSRP, it guarantees that you’ll never pay more than retail. As long furniture rented has no more than some normal wear and tear then you’ll save money renting in the short-term.
If you’re in an unfurnished space for your next summer internship or extended work trip, make yourself at home and check out the furniture rentals available for you.
Passing furniture along to the next renter is better for the environment than throwing it away just as selling your old furniture; if you bought it keeps it from entering landfills.