Short-Term Rentals vs. On-Demand Housing: What’s the Difference?

Short-Term Rentals vs. On-Demand Housing

Traditionally, renting a place to sleep always required a fixed term. Whether it was a 3-night night hotel booking or a 12-month lease on an empty apartment, you needed to fit your life around someone else’s calendar.

But over the past decade, two new rental trends have emerged: short-term rentals and on-demand housing. These two models blur the lines between booking and renting, allowing people to rent a furnished place to sleep without having to commit to a long-term contract. But what’s the difference between short-term rentals and on-demand housing?

What are short-term rentals?

Short-term rentals, also known as vacation rentals, are typically booked for a few days or weeks at a time. Think Airbnb or VRBO bookings. They are often furnished and include all the amenities you would expect from a hotel, such as linens, towels, kitchen appliances and utensils, and wifi.

Short-term rentals typically have set booking dates and offer guests the flexibility to rent for a predetermined amount of time. For example, if you’re looking for a short-term rental in a city, you would typically be able to book it only for firm dates.

If you’re looking to book a popular short-term rental for an extended stay, a weekend booking in the middle of your intended dates may thwart your booking, or the ability to extend your stay if you want to stay longer.

What is on-demand housing?

On-demand housing is a type of booking that allows guests to rent a furnished apartment for as as many nights as you need. Like a short-term rental, on-demand lodging is fully furnished and provides all the amenities of a hotel and short-term rental (linens, kitchenwares, etc.).

Unlike short-term rentals, on-demand housing does not require that guests commit to a fixed term. When an extended stay guest (30+ nights) books on-demand housing, the calendar for that furnished apartment is blocked so the guest can extend their stay as many times as they need. It’s open-ended, flexible and designed to help guests whose lives don’t fit into neat boxes.

Lodgeur guests on extended stays are able to terminate extended stays on 14 days’ notice, subject to a 30-night minimum. We call this our Peace of Mind Policy.

A travel nurse whose contract is extended or terminated can easily extend or shorten her booking. A patient at the Texas Medical Center can flex their booking dates as his treatment plan changes. A relocating professional can move into her next home when she’s ready, without the pressure of a fixed move-out date. Lodgeur’s guests have stayed for as long as 13 months in our on-demand housing! This particular guest only initially booked for one month, but extended his stay 12 times.

The world is moving toward flexible, on-demand housing that you can book on your phone like a subscription. It’s a convenient, cost-effective option for people who need flexible, extended-stay housing without having to commit to a specific term. We believe in the future, most people will rent furnished homes on flexible terms.

The bottom line

Short-term rentals and on-demand housing offer flexible booking options that bridge the gap between hotel stays and long-term leases. Whether you’re looking for a place to stay for just a few days or an extended stay, they both provide an affordable way to rent a furnished apartment without having to commit to a long-term contract.

The key difference is that while short-term rentals require guests to commit to their booking dates, on-demand housing allows them to extend their stay as many times as they need with no long-term commitment. Ultimately, the choice between a short-term rental and an on-demand housing booking depends on how much certainty you have around your plans.

For guests looking into temporary housing options as they process a breakup or separation, read our blog post about flexible, furnished apartments.

Is Lodgeur available for short-term rentals?

Yes! Lodgeur opens up its booking calendar for short-term rentals within the next two weeks. If you’re coming to Midtown Houston or the Texas Medical Center, check out our stylish furnished apartments at Mid Main Lofts and Elan Med Center.

Learn more about booking a furnished apartment:

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