Inexpensive short term furniture rental?
April 28, 2014 10:25 AM   Subscribe

Is there even such a thing? Student intern in northern VA needs bed and sofabed for only 3 months and furniture rentals are really expensive. She doesn't need to buy furniture because we cannot hall it across 4 states and we have no where to store it at our house. Any suggestions?
posted by sandra194 to Education (13 answers total)
Maybe try posting a WANTED on Freecycle? The NoVA list is pretty popular.
posted by inigo2 at 10:28 AM on April 28, 2014

Buy new and then flip the stuff in 3 months on Craigslist?

I know a guy who does this regularly with power tools that he knows he'll only need for a few months. Buys them new, finishes the project, then sells them as used. The loss he takes on the sale works out to be less than the fee to rent for the same period.
posted by jquinby at 10:28 AM on April 28, 2014 [3 favorites]

Is there an IKEA nearby? I can't imagine renting would be cheaper than getting the cheapest thing IKEA has and dumping it at the end of 3 months.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 10:29 AM on April 28, 2014 [2 favorites]

There's Cort furniture rentals, but they're not what I call cheap.

They do have a Clearance Center. It may be cheaper than renting it.

Or buy cheap and resell on Craigslist, or buy on Craigslist and resell on Craigslist.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 10:30 AM on April 28, 2014

I have a double bed (mattress and boxspring, no frame though) that she can have and pass along when she's done with it. All I ask is a promise it doesn't get thrown in a landfill afterwards :) Memail me if you're interested.
posted by brilliantine at 10:33 AM on April 28, 2014 [2 favorites]

When I was in a similar situation, I bought (online) Ikea's cheapest foam twin mattress, which I believe was $98, and put it on the floor. Not the most elegant solution but it worked fine for a few months and at the end I was able to sell it for $40 on Craigslist.

It was significantly more comfortable than a camp pad and took regular sheets.
posted by charmcityblues at 10:38 AM on April 28, 2014 [2 favorites]

Dumpster diving, yard sales, and/or Craigslist. No business set up to rent furniture is going to want to do it on cheaper terms than you can get that way. Even if you just throw the stuff out afterwards, renting would be more expensive.
posted by valkyryn at 11:23 AM on April 28, 2014

If you have somebody local who can manage this for you, this would be a great time of year to put up a bunch of "stuff wanted" notices at local universities. You wouldn't believe what students just throw away so they don't have to deal with storing or moving it.
posted by Sweetie Darling at 11:33 AM on April 28, 2014

Look on the free section of Craigslist, or buy at Ikea and sell it on Craigslist.
posted by jgirl at 11:37 AM on April 28, 2014

Buy new and then flip the stuff in 3 months on Craigslist?

Buy USED then flip it in three months...I definitely wouldn't buy new, you lose a huge amount of the value with furniture.
posted by arnicae at 11:54 AM on April 28, 2014 [2 favorites]

Craigslist, craigslist, craigslist.

May is the month to pick up basically free furniture from graduating students. Rent a ZipVan when you get to VA. Spend a day driving around to various craigslisted furniture. Craigslist it at the end, and watch it magically disappear and money appear.

Your alternative is ikea delivery, if hauling stuff by herself isn't an option. Selling it back at the end of the internship through craigslist is how you get rid of it.

Third option, which I'm assuming was ruled out, a furnished sublease? There are plenty of intern/travel-abroad/etc hopping students in northern VA.
posted by fontophilic at 1:54 PM on April 28, 2014

We looked for furnished apartments there last weekend. Nothing was available for her time frame--they were extra-expensive anyways
posted by sandra194 at 2:14 PM on April 28, 2014

For 3 months, I'd probably look at buying a $20-40 air mattress and sleeping on that (and doing without a sofa bed, if possible). Best part is you can pack it up and move with it extremely easily, and they're handy to have around for guests.
posted by Aleyn at 3:51 PM on April 28, 2014 [2 favorites]

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