Working Away from Home? Understand Your Options for Short-Term Housing


short-term housing options

It’s tough living out of a suitcase. You’re far away from home, loved ones, and often, a comfortable mattress.

For many people, this is reality, especially for businesspeople, students, military personnel or workers on short-term contracts. However, you have options. The best match for you will be meet your needs for length of stay, financial resources and amenities.

Here is a breakdown of your options for short-term stay, including furnished apartments, extended-stay hotels and corporate housing.

Option 1: Furnished Apartment

Furnished apartments are designed specifically for students and traveling professionals. They take the hassle out of renting an apartment and buying furniture. They usually come with basic kitchen appliances and some amenities. A washer and dryer and bathroom essentials like towels are provided.

They are perfect for people in a time crunch that need a living space quickly. Leases are generally shorter than a traditional apartment rental, but the rent and security deposit can be more expensive.

As well, a furnished apartment does not always consider the end users and have limited availability. Often, furnishings are sparse and not geared toward luxury living. They are usually decorated for basic needs and often don’t come with wifi, cable and other amenities. In general, they are basic.


  • Fully furnished
  • Inexpensive
  • Easy access


  • Not designed for business executives
  • Limited amenities
  • High cost for rent and deposit

Option 2: Corporate Housing

Corporate housing refers to a furnished apartment, condo or house rental. You’ll enjoy all the amenities of a normal apartment without the long-term financial obligation of a long-term lease. It’s perfect for a business person, student, military personnel or contract worker who is staying more than two weeks.

Corporate housing is furnished more luxuriously to cater to a business travelers’ needs. Corporate housing companies take the time to create a high-end product. In addition, you’ll enjoy amenities like high speed wifi and the cable television.

When you move into corporate housing, all you need is a suitcase. It’s a turnkey solution to your housing needs. Everything is provided, making your stay comfortable and easy. You don’t have to worry about towels, bedding and other features of a home.

Corporate housing often has several rental options available, and the apartments can usually be rented with one, two and three bedrooms.

Corporate housing is also a good lifestyle choice. You can purchase groceries at the local market and cook your own meals in a full kitchen. Plates, silverware and pots and pans are provided. The temporary housing is designed for minimal effort during your stay.

Unlike a renting a furnished apartment, service is the focus of corporate housing. The staff is always available to help – and most buildings offer a 24 hour concierge desk. Many corporate housing companies also offer cleaning services as an additional service. Pets are usually allowed at corporate housing, and business people can have family stay at the apartment. Other amenities include a fitness center, a parking garage and a desk to work. The goal is to create an environment that feels more like a home and not like a hotel.


  • Multiple housing options
  • Numerous amenities
  • Geared to high-end traveler


  • Higher price
  • Limited housekeeping

Option 3: Extended Stay Hotel

The square footage of an extended-stay hotel is less than corporate housing, but the price is usually less. They generally consist of only one main area and a bedroom.

In an extended-stay hotel, you usually have a kitchenette and not a full kitchen. One of the key benefits of an extended-stay hotel is daily housekeeping services. Staff will wash sheets and towels and tidy up the room each day. For a stay of a week or so, an extended-hotel might be a viable option, but corporate housing is the better choice when someone is staying for several weeks or a few months.

Breakfast is sometimes provided at an extended-stay hotel. That can make it easy for the person who is on the run and wants to get out the door quickly in the morning or someone who is living on a small per diem.

Location is also a general difference between corporate housing and an extended-stay hotel. Hotels are usually located near airports or off interstates. Corporate housing is generally located in a more residential setting.


  • Reasonable price
  • Daily housekeeping
  • Some amenities


  • Small square footage
  • Limited kitchen
  • No long-term lease