Hanging art up in a furnished apartment

Tips & Guides / Furnished Apartments

What Is a Furnished Apartment?

By Landing | Mar 30, 2020

If you’re just dipping your toes into the waters of flexible living solutions, welcome—the temperature is divine! With a treasure map of travel-friendly apartment options being unveiled across the globe, it’s an extraordinary time to be a remote worker or routine traveler. 

Among these options, meet the furnished apartment: a ready-for-you home that used to be something of a myth.

So, what is a furnished apartment? A furnished apartment or home contains, at minimum, the basic furniture and home accessories you need to live comfortably upon arrival, without having to visit the furniture store or bring your own.

Ready to set sail? Let’s uncover what, exactly, furnished apartments include, and why they’re prime for anyone considering renting in a new city.

Fully furnished meaning

Some furnished apartment listings will use slight variations in terminology, which are helpful to understand when figuring out what to expect from each option. Let’s break down the differences between each fully furnished apartment type and other possible options you may encounter during your apartment search. 

Fully furnished apartment

At the highest level of furniture and fittings provided, this type of apartment should contain everything you require to walk in and start living. You shouldn’t need to bring anything with you except for your clothes, personal essentials, and whatever you need for work—in other words, whatever you’d normally pack in your suitcase and a carry-on. 

This makes the fully furnished apartment ideal for digital nomads, frequent travelers, or anyone looking at renting a perfectly prepared living space at the drop of a hat.

Semi-furnished apartment

When searching for a fully furnished apartment, it’s important to know that there are also semi-furnished apartments, which are one step down the ladder in terms of what is included. If you book a semi-furnished home, you’ll still have some furniture provided for you, but usually just the bare necessities to get you by. Think furniture like:

  • A bed frame and bare mattress
  • A kitchen table and chairs
  • A living room sofa and perhaps a lamp or two

In a semi-furnished home, you’d still need to bring everything else to make this place feel inviting—your sheets, towels, dishware, decor, and so on. This means a semi-furnished home still requires quite a bit of moving in, even if you’re only planning to stay there a few days.

Unfurnished apartment

It probably goes without saying, but an unfurnished apartment contains nothing but the most major appliances—such as your refrigerator, stove, and sometimes (but not always) a dishwasher, microwave, and laundry appliances. In this case, everything else is your responsibility, from the welcome mat to your major pieces of furniture.

Now that we’ve got that covered, let’s delve into the details of a furnished apartment and find out what, exactly, you can expect.

What does a furnished apartment include?

Since we’ve defined the alternatives, we’ll focus here on what you should normally expect in a fully furnished rental. Keep in mind that there can be some variations depending upon how big the apartment is and where it’s located.

Let’s take an imaginary tour, room by room:

Living room

Step into the space where you’ll be cuddling up to catch the latest “British Bake Off,” conquering charades with your new friends, and maybe even finishing those last few pages of your novel. A fully furnished living room should include the things you need to feel comfortable in your apartment, such as:

  • A sofa and chairs
  • Side tables, end tables, and coffee table
  • Lamps and overhead lighting
  • Area rugs, if the floors aren’t carpeted

Kitchen

Next, we’ll move to the kitchen, where you’re sure to cook up culinary delights to rival your most culinary-inclined companions. Aside from the major kitchen appliances and furniture like a kitchen or dining room table, you should count on your furnished kitchen to include several other apartment essentials, like:

  • A coffee maker
  • A toaster or toaster oven
  • Basic cooking utensils, pots, and pans
  • Plates, glasses, and cutlery

This type of apartment may also come with kitchen towels, dishwashing accessories, and sometimes even soap and other household items. In a higher-end apartment, you’ll likely also find a dishwasher.

Bathroom

Most of the furnishings of a bathroom are typically built-in, such as your standard toilet, sink, and shower, or bathtub. The extra amenities offered in a fully furnished home include:

  • Bath linens, including bath towels, hand towels, and bath mat
  • A shower curtain
  • Sink accessories, like a toothbrush holder and hand soap dispenser

Some apartments will also provide a few extra amenities, like shampoo, conditioner, and soap.

Bedroom

Let’s waltz into the bedroom, where you want to have everything you need to sleep like a golden retriever after a good long run at the park. A fully furnished bedroom should include:

  • A bed frame and mattress
  • A nightstand and bedside lamp
  • A dresser
  • At least some bed linens, such as pillows and a comforter

You’ll also want to check whether your bedroom provides all the linens, as sometimes you may need to bring your own sheets. However, you should be able to find out these things from your host or landlord before moving in.

Laundry room

Ideally, a fully furnished apartment should either come equipped with a washer and dryer or provide access to shared laundry facilities within the building. This is important to check before you move in, as lugging your stinky socks to the Wash-O-Matic down the street will feel the opposite of “traveling light.” 

Extras

Finding a nicely furnished living space will go a long way toward helping you settle into your new dwelling. While not always included, there are a few other things some hosts will include to truly give your stay that extra pizazz:

  • Electronics: This may include a flatscreen TV, DVD player, Wi-Fi router, and sometimes a landline phone and stereo system.
  • Utilities: For those looking for a stress-free renting experience, it makes sense to look for a place where you won’t have to sign up for utilities separately. Utilities that may be included are your water, heat, and electricity, as well as cable, internet, and phone services.
  • Decor: The truly divine furnished apartments, like those offered by Landing, include designer-chosen elements such as art, decorative items, and additional lighting to make your new space feel even more comfortable and whole. 

Do furnished apartments come with beds?

As we’ve noted above, a bed frame and mattress should be included in a furnished bedroom. A high-quality apartment will also include bed linens, such as your pillows, sheets, and a comforter or duvet, ensuring sweet dreams without a hitch.

Are furnished apartments clean?

One hesitation of those considering moving into a furnished place is that they’ll be using the same accouterments as the previous occupants. But if you shudder at the thought of moving into a place where the last visitor’s cleaning routine may have been lacking, have no fear.

Many landlords these days will apply a turnover as thorough as any hotel room between their residents, meaning that your new lodgings should be fresh when you arrive. On top of that, a growing number of landlords also offer cleaning services even while you’re there to help you keep your new abode sparkling.

To ensure your comfort when it comes to cleanliness, check with your landlord about whether the apartment is smoke-free and what housekeeping services they offer. You can also ask to learn more about their cleaning policies or any stipulations they set forth in their apartment leases.

Are furnished apartments more expensive?

Depending on the size, location, and amenities of the new apartment you choose, it’s possible you may spend a little more on the up-front cost of living in a furnished apartment or even on your monthly rent. However, you’re likely to still save money on other things when moving into a furnished home. 

While nearly all traditional leases require security deposits worth at least a month’s rent (if not more), some short-term living spaces, like Landing, have recognized this as a hindering factor for potential residents of fully furnished homes and opted to offer deposit-free apartments instead. 

Besides that, filling an empty apartment with all the stuff you need is not cheap. Not only will you keep your coins when it comes to hiring movers for your heavy furniture, but you’ll also avoid the inevitable purchases that come when you realize what you brought with you doesn’t quite suit your new home. On average, it costs a minimum of $3,500 to furnish a one-bedroom apartment on your own, but likely much more if you’re starting from scratch.

Are furnished apartments worth it?

To figure out whether a furnished apartment is worth it to you, you’ll have to weigh the benefits against your needs. Ultimately, however, furnished homes are an unrivaled option for those who want:

  • A stress-free move-in experience
  • To save time and avoid furniture shopping
  • The flexibility of moving without packing your own furniture
  • To save money on furnishings and accessories
  • The ability to travel light

Find a fully furnished apartment with Landing

At the end of the day, the advantages of furnished homes are bountiful—and with so many incredible places to explore, it’s easy to see why so many people are taking advantage of this option and setting their sights on new cities.

That’s why Landing is re-inventing the market for fully furnished, flexible-lease living. With plenty of fully furnished apartments and all the amenities you need, staying with us will feel like a dream come true. Have a hankering for a new horizon? Keep your travel light and leisurely with Landing.

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About the author

Landing

Fred may be the world's slowest typist and struggle to hold a pen, but he has mastered how to pursue a more flexible lifestyle throughout his airborne adventures around the U.S. Whether you're looking for more information before migrating to a new city or want to find an easier way to rent a nest—erm, apartment—Fred will always be here to share his best advice for where to live and how to thrive.