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The New Traveler’s Guide to Setting up Housing: Lessons from my experiences packing for and setting

I’m ready to move in, but my apartment is not furnished!!!! Now what???

When it comes to furnishing your apartment, you have a few different options…

  1. Bring your own furniture from home. This will most likely require that you rent a U-Haul which you could hitch your vehicle. For a single traveler, this may be more difficult, but is still an option none-the-less

  2. Make a make shift bed – A nice air mattress combined with a 3 inch memory foam topper creates an extremely comfortable bed

  3. Rent Furniture – Depending on what you think you need, you have a few different options when it comes to renting furniture

  4. CORT – CORT offers move-in ready packages which feature a bedroom set, living room set, and dining room set to make your apartment move-in ready. Depending on geographic location, these packages will run you $262+/month. Note: This price does not include taxes, insurance, delivery, set-up, or pick-up. For an area that costs $262/month, when you add in the all these fees, you will be averaging $400/month for furniture. If you decide to utilize CORT, be sure to ask them about their delivery dates. There are several areas where CORT has limited delivery options. For example, they will only deliver on Tuesday or Thursday to your particular area.

  5. Rent-A-Center – If you would like to do a move-in ready package, Rent-A-Center will match the price of CORT. You will need to print out an estimate from the CORT website for your area. You can rent as much or as little as you like with free cancellation at any time. Rent-A-Center also provides free delivery, set-up, and pick-up that can be done same day. Rent-A-Center often has promotions where you can get up to a month free. Subscribe to their email promotions to receive these valuable coupons. Note: Rent-A-Center does require an application with 2-4 references that can be completed online prior to going to the store to expedite the rental process

Rent-A-Center Sample Prices:

1. Mattress, box spring, and frame: $27.99/week

2. Bedroom set including dresser, night stand, mirror: $24.99/week

3. Sofa/loveseat set: $26.99/week

4. Five piece dining set: $24.99/week

5. Lamp set: $6.99/week

6. Accessory table (coffee table & end tables) = $16.99/week

You can mix & match any of the above.

  • To get the most bang for your buck, go without the tables and lamps and buy some cheap tables and lamps on your own. You’ll save money in the end. Even if you can’t fit them in your vehicle, you can donate them and get a tax receipt for your donation at the end of your assignment.

What about housewares??? – You can elect to bring your own housewares or rent your housewares from CORT.

  • Renting housewares will run you an average of $115/month plus taxes & fees. CORT also requires a minimum monthly rent. Therefore, if you are not also renting furniture from CORT, this is not a viable option for you.

  • To save money, you may want to bring along your own housewares to each assignment. You can typically fit all that you would need while on assignment into two large Rubbermaid tubs.

  • If you decide to bring your own housewares, TJMax, Home Goods, and Target are great places to buy these things

  • Signing up for the Bed, Bath, & Beyond email blasts will also give you a lot of 20% off coupons which can be used to save $$$ on higher ticket priced items such as memory foams and kitchen appliances such as microwaves.

  • An Amazon prime membership will be your best friend if you decide to furnish and provide your own housewares while on assignment!

Starting Points to Secure an Unfurnished Apartment

b) (my personal favorite – look for lease terms)

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