Tuesday 8 December 2020

Would you go for fully furnished?

For the past five weeks we've been staying in a beautiful holiday home. The family still lives in the area - and they manage the property - but the house is out for rent by weekenders, holiday makers and longer-term guests like us. It is fully furnished with a very well equipped kitchen. In terms of household items, there are very few items in my household boxes in the storage garage that I have missed not having on hand.

Moving, and the packing, transporting, storage and unpacking of stuff, gets one thinking about stuff - all these things that we lug around to make our lives comfortable and functional. Furniture, linen, sports equipment, hobby materials, appliances, clothing... just so much stuff. 

Most furnished rentals tend to be of the holiday-home sort or minimally furnished one-bedroom places. 

But how cool would it be for furnished to become a thing (or is it already in some places?)? That there could be a property website that specialises in representing furnished apartments, townhouses and houses for long-term rental (a year or more). Furniture should be current and of a good standard (scored by assessors) - no saggy couches or soft mattresses. Properties can be categorised according to what they provide from the basics to extras - like a star grading. A one star may suit all my requirements while someone else may need 4-star furnishings and extras.

Colours could be fairly neutral, allowing to add your own colour accents with cushions, mats, throws and pictures.

For me, basics would include:

Kitchen: fridge, stove, toaster, kettle, selection of quality pots and pans, cutlery, crockery, mugs and glasses, cooking utensils, mixing bowls and some bakeware. Here we are lucky to have other appliances that I regularly use like an egg boiler, steamer and hand blender - so I don't miss mine. But these are easier to pack and move.

Living/Dining: table (4-6 seater - depends too on size of place), couch/es, coffee table, tv table, bookcase. Another table to work at would be useful - either in the living area or in a 'study' room.

Bedrooms: beds, mattresses, lamps, side tables, cupboards (if not built-in). (Linen could be for higher category establishments). 

Other appliances: washing machine (dishwasher perhaps in a higher categorised property and vacuum cleaner). Dryers are nice but non-essential. 

Bathrooms: Linen baskets.

Outside: lawnmover / weedeater and some garden tools - as necessary. Patio table and chairs.

Other: Curtains. A few mirrors and pictures even may go down well (or have the option to be stored by the owners). And then even things like buckets, brooms, floor cleaners would go down well. They're a pain to move.

Of course, the problem with this concept is... people. Contracts would need to be tighter and deposits perhaps higher to cover damage to property. If one has seen what tenants do to even unfurnished properties... There would definitely be unsavoury people taking advantage of these setups to use and abuse nice stuff and then move on to the next one. 

So this kind of concept may work better within networks of people rather than the full-blown public? And once you're in and have proven your worth as a tenant, you get more free range to move around within the network of properties?

Moving would be far more simple if you could leave behind the big, heavy stuff, and take only your more personal items. 

I quite like this concept! 

1 comment:

adventurelisa said...

I have a friend living overseas. She went over in January for a holiday and to visit family and got stuck during lockdown. She returned to SA briefly and then headed abroad again. She sent me such a great reply that I wanted to save it here. She writes:

"I have had two rentals here. The summer flat, as I call it, is a block of 40 apartments, all rented, mainly for the summer. In most cases, people pay for the year, spend July and August there full time and make use of it for long weekends over other times of the year. It is not occupied in winter which is why I moved into town.

And the apartments are furnished. Very basic, mix and matched but functional and acceptable for a summer at the sea. The flat I am in now is also fully furnished, year round, more modern and matching furniture, includes washing machine and dishwasher. It is standard though to supply your own cutlery and linen which I prefer.

I came over with two suitcases in January and moved back here with two suitcases, few clothes cos I'm minimalist like that, more running gear than anything else and my crochet stuff is my only craftsy stuff.

And I highly recommend it! The people here seem to be different in SA in that there is very little damage done, contracts are spoken or written on a paper and signed. And while a hand blender is a nice to have, I've learned to manage without one too. It is interesting to see how others live though."