Your Guide to Living in Temporary Housing

 guide to living in temporary housing

At some point, you may find yourself in a situation where you are in need of temporary housing. This could be due to job relocation, pursuing further education, a military transfer, or a host of other life changing circumstances.   This article will provide fresh ideas on how to make the best of your short-term living arrangement and ways to make it as enjoyable as possible.

Finding an ideal place to live is easier than ever with several options for short-term rental listings online. You can get yourself set up with a furnished or unfurnished space and shared or private accommodations for a short span of time from a week to as long as a year. You can find just the right place to call your own for however long you need — no matter what your budget may be.  

We specialize in helping people feel comfortable in their homes, whether it’s long- or short-term. We have an array of suggestions to show you how to decorate your temporary housing so that something that could feel like an extended hotel stay, will instead feel comfortable and as close to home as possible.

How to Find Your Short Term Housing

how to find short term housing










With a simple search online, you’ll be able to scan a multitude of options for short-term accommodations. Use search terms like:

  • Temporary housing
  • Short-term accommodations
  • Corporate housing
  • Short-term rental

Also include the name of the city or region you’re moving to. You’ll get information on local companies that provide this type of rental and brokers who could assist you in finding suitable accommodations.

Don’t overlook those broker companies that are targeting vacationers, either. While most property owners that list their property are trying to appeal to people who are looking to visit the area for a week or two, many may also be willing to offer their rental space for a few months or more. Vacation rentals are furnished and can be a shared living space, an entire house or an apartment. Some of the bigger companies that offer listings of vacation properties are Airbnb, Owner Direct and VRBO (Vacation Rentals by Owner).

There are also companies that provide a long list of short-term apartment rentals with a variety of search filters to narrow down potential homes.

furnished or not

Wondering if a furnished rental is for you? There are a few scenarios where it makes sense to move into a temporary living space that is fully furnished and ready to live in immediately. Avoiding the unpacking, organizing and days of moving exhaustion is a definite bonus to a live-in ready home — but you’ll also be surrounded by décor that may not fit with your style and visual appeal.

Look over this list of the pros and cons to renting a furnished living space to decide which option is best for you:

Advantages of a furnished apartment or house:

  • No need to buy or rent your furniture. This can be a bonus but not necessarily a money saving option, as a furnished space will generally cost more than an unfurnished space.
  • Easy moving day. Even if you’re in a situation where you had to pack and store the mass of your belongings, you’ll be able to have a fairly easy-going day moving into your new place.
  • Helpful when you need to move on short notice. Moving a household takes planning and time. If you have to move quickly, a furnished space will get you on location without a home in disarray.

Disadvantages of a furnished apartment or house:

  • You’ll pay more for monthly living expenses and for the security deposit. Obviously you’re getting more than an empty unit, so you’re going to pay more. The monthly rent will also probably be higher than a comparable place unfurnished, and the owner will likely require a higher security deposit to cover the risk of damage to their furniture.
  • There’s more responsibility to care for other’s belongings. Any rental property you move into will generally require a security deposit that covers possible damage incurred to the property, but with the inclusion of furniture, housewares, electronics and other included items, you will be responsible to replace or fix all that comes with the rental. Accidents happen — children are unpredictable, and we can all be a little careless from time to time.
  • You’ll have little control over the style and layout of your home. You can add a few small personal touches, but most of your home environment will not be of your choosing. Whether it be an uncomfortable bed, an unattractive couch or dishes that make you cringe, you’ll have to put up with them while you’re there.
  • Less options to choose from. There aren’t as many furnished rentals as there are unfurnished. You may be willing to compromise on your living situation for a short time, especially if you’re looking for something quick to move in to. If you have other family members moving with you, however, the selection may be a bit slim for your needs.

Furnished apartments are a big help when you don’t want to deal with buying furniture. We make renting furniture and other home amenities easy, giving you a place to lay your head with more comfort and convenience than a hotel room. Pre-furnished rentals aren’t the only option. You can also select items to rent that fit your individual needs. Check out what we can offer for a quick and easy live-in ready home with a bit more of your personal style involved.
By browsing our site and with some help from our account professionals, you’ll be able to create your own furnished space where you’ll feel comfortable and at home.

perk up your space

Even if you have the majority of your belongings in storage, you can still have many smaller items that can bring you a feeling of comfort and peace. Here are a few small ways you can make your space feel like home:

  • Give your space a pleasing fragrance. Do you have a favorite scent in a candle, incense or aromatherapy oil that you can diffuse in the air? Use it to add a sense of familiarity to your living area. If you don’t already have a favorite smell, discover one that resonates with you and gives your senses a pleasant treat.
  • Add a few pieces of your favorite artwork. Display a few pieces from home, or if you are in need of artwork to complement your space, IFR offers a variety of modern, tasteful pieces that typically come standard with any furniture package. Just ask!
  • Grace your space with something living. Try adding a potted plant, an herb garden basket or a colorful fish. Plants and simple fish like bettas or goldfish are a low maintenance option to personalize your home and give you something to care for.
  • Put familiar pictures around. Warm up your space with a few pictures of family and friends on the wall, on dressers and shelves or on your fridge.
  • Add a rug. A bold, colorful or intricately designed rug is an inexpensive and easily-movable option to put your personality in place. It could hide an unattractive floor or just bring some needed pizzazz into a neutral-toned room.
  • Use mirrors. Mirrors in all shapes and sizes add to the décor and expand the look of a room. Tall mirrors can be used in hallways and entryways and can be leaned against a wall to avoid marking walls with screws. You can also have smaller mirrors standing on end tables or on floating shelves.
  • Add window treatments. Your place may already be equipped with curtains or shades, but you can easily store the ones that came with the unit and express your own designing flair with some curtains that reflect your personal taste.
  • Soften the space with pillows. Pillows add color and softness to a room whether it be a bedroom, living room or den. With the various shapes and sizes pillows come in, you’ll be able to browse lots of options. You’ll come up with all kinds of decorating ideas for infusing your preferences into your temporary living space easily and cheaply.
  • Decorate with Washi Tape. Decorate walls, furniture or other small items with Washi Tape. Originating in Japan, Washi Tape is a low-tack decorating tape used for all kinds of creative works.

You can get a wallpaper effect by strategically placing blocks of tape in repeating designs on a single wall or all walls in a room. You can also go for a chic and detailed grid pattern that will resemble a piece of art on a wall.

The best thing about Washi Tape is its low-tack adhesive that can be easily removed to reposition or to just take off because you’re moving. There won’t be any marking of the surface it was adhered to.

  • Use accent lighting. Lighting can be very useful to create a specific mood or atmosphere. A torchiere lamp, which points light towards the ceiling can provide a soft, pleasing level of light and serves an impactful decorating element. A table top lamp with a colored glass or other designer shade gives the space a soft glow and intriguing décor whether the light is on or off.

Enjoy Your Living Space With These Temporary Housing Tips

temporary housing tips

Even a short-term living arrangement warrants the effort to be comfortable and settled. You may be between houses, on a short-term work assignment or need to be in a certain area for education or family reasons, but you still want your place to feel like home.

Apart from decorating, there are a few other ways to ensure you’ll be in a living arrangement you’ll get the most of while you’re there. Here are the top five temporary housing tips to get the most compatible short-term home and be thoroughly impressed with your new digs:

  1. If you’re planning to purchase a home in the area where you’re looking for temporary housing, allow yourself appropriate time to research your options. Weigh the pros and cons of each place. Thoughtful consideration in the planning stage ensures you’ll enjoy your short-term rental and you won’t be rushing into something that doesn’t fit your needs. Base your decision on all the factors involved; distance to work, size, features and neighborhood.
  1. Don’t underestimate convenience — even in a temporary residence. You may be willing to compromise on some of your regular comforts for the short-term, but be sure you’re not compromising too much. A temporary home is still your home, so be sure to have a few features that you know will make it comfortable like convenient parking, a washer and dryer or two bathrooms.
  1. If you have children, you may be especially interested in the neighborhood and school district. Even if you’re unable to visit the area, there are many sources online that can give you an idea of what the school setting is like and how the neighborhood looks. A quick search of the school name with ‘review’ or ‘news’ will bring up some content about the school. Google Street View can be a good source of the area, giving you a 360-degree view of any neighborhood you’re checking out.
  1. Get informed about all the terms of your short-term rental. Be sure you have a rental or lease agreement and read over all the terms so you’re not disappointed over something you agreed to when you signed. If there’s something you don’t understand, be sure to ask questions. When you can work together with the property owner and you both are aware of each other’s concerns, the arrangement always works out better.
  1. If you’re planning to buy a house, even a year down the road, contact a realtor in the area to let them know your situation and intent to purchase in the future. You can ask them if they can connect you with any short-term rental opportunities. Some real estate brokers also manage rental properties and could have a variety of available rentals for you to look at. In addition, IFR offers an apartment locator service. Let us know what you’re looking for, and we can give several recommendations for the area you’re moving to, whether you’ll want pre-furnished or not.

To make temporary housing an enjoyable experience, consider it a bit of an adventure. You may be in a short-term living arrangement for a month, a year or anything in between, so have realistic expectations. The act of moving generally adjusts your day-to-day living, but the key is to embrace the change in routine and surroundings and enjoy some new ways of being ‘at home.’

Living in temporary housing doesn’t have to be a waiting game to your next place. Make some memories and make it home. We’ve designed a variety of packages to assist with décor options if you’re in temporary living arrangements, so you can be comfortable and at ease. Contact us today and see how you can get your home beautifully furnished with a style that’s all your own.