< Back
Property Management Published: 6th December 2023

Navigating the Costs: Short-Term Rentals vs. Long-Term Rentals

One of the key defining factors in deciding whether or not to stay in a short or long-term rental is the costs associated with the accommodation. Typically, the nightly or daily rates vary depending on the type of rental the property is intended for. Short-term stays include more amenities in their price. Tenants usually need to pay extra for these same facilities should they require them in long-term leases. When navigating the property rental market, it’s essential to know how much you can expect to pay for different types of accommodation. In this guide, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know when it comes to navigating the costs of short-term and long-term rentals, and which ones may suit you best based on the circumstances under which you intend to rent. 

Short-Term Rentals: Flexibility and Inclusive Costs

Staying in a short-term rental property has several benefits. Although the rates per night may seem slightly higher than those of a long-stay property, there is a good reason behind the pricing variable. Below are the reasons why you may find that short-term rentals are slightly more expensive, yet economical considering their intended use. 

1. Flexibility and No Fixed Tenancy Agreement

Short-term rental properties are mainly for individuals or families who want to stay in the property for a term no longer than three months, or 90 consecutive days. They are very popular given the amount of flexibility guests are given when they stay in these types of accommodations. For business trips, for example, short-term rentals are becoming even more popular than hotels, given the fact that guests have far more space to enjoy and use. In 2022, the occupancy rate for serviced apartments was 78% compared to 73.5% for hotels. Short-term rentals provide all the comforts of a home, allowing guests to cater entirely for themselves or, in some cases, have their laundry and cleaning done for them. This would be the case in service apartments. 

Another aspect of flexibility that makes these types of accommodations so appealing is the time of a guest's stay. As there is no fixed tenancy agreement, there is no need for any commitments to be made by the guests to the landlord, property owner, or property management company. With no fixed agreement as to how long the property will be occupied, tenants, or in this case, guests, have the freedom to adapt the duration of their stay according to their specific needs. 

2. Expectation Management: All-Inclusive Costs

Short-term rentals also often come with a simplified cost structure, something that is deemed advantageous to guests. Short-term rentals typically incorporate costs like council tax, WiFi, electricity bills, water, and other obligatory costs that you would typically find in long-term rentals. Guests can therefore expect these costs to be integrated into the overall package when they pay their set nightly rate and won't be caught off guard by hidden expenses. There are often options for access to additional amenities like gyms or communal areas and cleaning services to enhance the convenience of the guest’s stay. If someone is a frequent guest at a short-term rental accommodation, there is also a possibility that the management team may offer discounts based on loyalty. This also makes these types of accommodations appealing to businesses, as it provides the opportunity to form trust-worthy, long-term relationships, ultimately saving companies money when it comes to staff travel. 

3. Professional Maintenance and High Standards

Finally, another appealing factor for short-term rentals is maintenance. Long-term rentals typically run the risk of being poorly maintained, as the cost of this falls directly on the landlord. However, making the space more appealing is the backbone of short-term rental property business models. They are therefore usually very well looked after, with someone on hand to help should something go amiss. 

Long-Term Rentals: Tenant Responsibilities and Stability

Before you commit to signing a long-term lease agreement, there are some things you need to factor in. For example, the amount of rent you pay per month may not cover all the costs you incur during your stay at the property. You also have more responsibility as the person who is permanently occupying the property. Let’s look a little closer at what it means to be a tenant in a long-term rental property. 

1. Costs to the Tenant

The pricing structure for long-term rentals is very different from short-term rentals.  As a tenant, you take on more responsibility and will need to account for additional costs such as council tax, internet, utility bills, and any additional cleaning you want done. While you have greater autonomy with this setup, it requires a more hands-on approach when it comes to managing your monthly living expenses.

2. Additional Amenities at Tenant's Expense

Unlike short-term rentals, long-term tenants are usually responsible for any additional amenities they may want unless the building they stay in has them included for a tenant’s use. If you desire access to a gym, for example, you might need to pay for a separate membership at a local club. Depending on the property, you’ll also have to pay for services like cleaning and garden services, to keep the property as well-maintained as possible. You need to consider costs like these before committing to a lease agreement.  

3. Minimum or Fixed Term Tenancy Contract

When you sign a lease agreement for a long-term rental, you usually have to stay there until your lease agreement ends. However, if there is a break clause, then you may be able to vacate the property before the end of the agreement period. You are also legally obliged to sign the tenancy agreement before you can occupy the property. If you need some flexibility as to how long you need to remain in the property, you may need to reconsider getting a long-term rental. 

Conclusion: Finding the Right Fit

Before committing to a short-term or long-term rental, you should weigh up your options according to the costs you may incur. Short-term rentals are the best option for anyone who is looking for a bit of flexibility, relocating for work, or simply after a lifestyle change. However, if you are in search of a home, or somewhere to stay more permanently, then a long-term rental may be a better option for you. When you look carefully at the differences between the types of properties, you can strike a balance between the financial aspects and the relevant lifestyle benefits, ensuring that your chosen accommodation aligns with what you need. TrustedStays specialises in short-term stays, and have an array of options for you to choose from on our site. 

Gain access to bookings from corporate and government professionals, outside of the typical holiday seasonality.

Quality short term home rentals for government staff, key workers & professionals.

All property partners are independently accredited by the Short Term Accommodation Association.

Safe, clean and secure accommodation for employees during work trips and relocations.

Learn more

Read what interests you most:

About Us Press & Reviews Work Travel Property Management

Receive an exclusive guide when you sign up!

Simply sign up to our newsletter and be the very first to find out exclusive information for all the latest work travel and accommodation news and we’ll send you a free guide on making the most from short term rentals.

We won’t spam you. Ever.