Most people who rent properties here in the Central Florida market rent them Unfurnished. That’s where the market is, that’s where the demand is, and that’s what tenants expect. There are a few key points that you, the landlord should go over to answer the question of furnishing your rental property.
The first thing most landlords think is if they rent their property furnished, then they can receive more rent. On the contrary, here in Central Florida you get no more rent for a furnished property than one that is unfurnished. 80-90% if our rental inquiries have been for unfurnished properties. The tenants want to bring their own furniture to bond with the unit, to truly feel at home. If they are renting a furnished property, it tends to be a transient rental where they aren’t there long term and they need temporary accommodations.
If you have furniture in your property that doesn’t have the latest fire certificate, or it isn’t modern and with the best wiring, it’s a huge liability. That liability means you are at greater risk for a lawsuit. Whereas if you had removed the furniture, you’ve now gotten rid of the liability. Your insurance premiums as a landlord will be less if your property is unfurnished. So liability == $$$ out of your pocket.
If your property is furnished, then you will have to keep Inventory of all the items inside the premises. This is extremely time consuming. Who will keep inventory? Who will monitor the inventory? How often should the inventory be audited? Time spent keeping inventory is non-productive time. You will not earn any more money for your effort, yet it has to be done for furnished properties.
A landlord with a furnished property also has to face the possibility of theft. As soon as you hand over possession, you have no control of what the tenant does with the furniture. We had a situation with tenants a few years back who took all of the landlord’s furniture. We called the police, but the best they could do was recommend a Civil Action Lawsuit.
So in the end we do not recommend renting your property furnished. It is simply too much of a liability and a waste of time and money. The only time you should consider furnishing your rental is if you are going for the vacation rental or short term rental market.