The Pros and Cons of Short Term Renting

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A short-term lease typically lasts fewer than six months and can be renewed weekly or monthly. Some renters find that a short-term lease provides them more flexibility in where they live and when they move, while others avoid these leases to have more certainty in their rental agreements. Here are the pros and cons of a short-term lease for renters to help you determine if this is the correct type of lease for you.

Pros of a short-term lease for renters

A short-term lease is best for renters who don’t plan to live in a specific unit for more than six months or need a temporary place to live during a life or living-situation transition. Here are some benefits to choosing a short-term lease:

  • Flexible move-out date: A short-term lease only lasts for a short time, such as one week or one month (the most common option). That means you can decide to end your lease and move out when it’s convenient for you, as long as you give notice within the timeframe provided in the lease agreement. Having this ability is excellent for life transitions, like moving into a house or relocating to a new place.
  • Easy transition from a long-term lease: If you have a long-term lease at a property and want to continue living there for a bit longer after the lease is up, you may be able to convert to a short-term lease after your long-term lease ends. Some landlords provide this option to retain excellent renters while they search for new long-term leaseholders.
  • No financial penalties for breaking the lease early: Since a short-term lease has such a flexible move-out date, you won’t have to deal with paying fees for breaking the lease after, say, two months of living there. However, it’s important that you still abide by the terms in the short-term lease to make sure you don’t incur fees for breaching other rules.
  • Good for those who travel and relocate a lot: Maybe you have a job where you travel to a specific location for weeks at a time and maintain a permanent home elsewhere. Or, maybe you’re a nomad who lives in a place for a few months and travels somewhere else. Whatever the case, if you’re moving from city to city and staying for weeks at a time, you might consider signing a short-term lease.

Cons of a short-term lease for renters

A short-term lease can be a less-than-ideal option for renters who plan to stay in a place for at least six months or longer and prefer more certainty in their lease agreements. Consider these drawbacks to renting with a short-term lease:

  • Increased rent: Short-term leases can be financially unstable for landlords. They may require renters to pay more per week or per month to offset potential losses while renting out a unit on short notice. This fact means that choosing a short-term lease may be more expensive for you in the long run.
  • Changing rental agreement terms: Because a short-term lease renews every week or month, either the renter or the landlord can suggest changes to the next lease’s terms, such as changes in rental costs. That means a landlord can also increase the unit’s rent each week or month, as long as they abide by rent control regulations in that city or state.
  • Short notice for lease termination: Just as you can end your short-term lease when it’s best for you, so can your landlord. They, too, have to give you notice within the timeframe in the agreement, but you could be required to move when it’s not convenient for you.
  • Limited renting options: Because of the potential financial risks with short-term leases, some landlords may not even offer this option, which could reduce the number of units available to you.

While a short-term lease may be the best option for you right now, you may want a long-term lease in the future or vice versa. Understanding the pros and cons of short-term leases can prepare you for deciding between a short- and long-term lease if the time comes.


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