Furniture of any kind can be expensive, even when you rent it. And that includes renting garden furniture.
You might feel tempted to rent if your outdoor spaces are only in use for a few months out of the year. Renting might at first seem like a reasonable alternative to buying when sale prices are at peak highs.
For example, a bistro set (two chairs and a small table) can easily run between $200 and $500, depending on the materials, at big box home improvement stores. Make it a complete dining set and you need to be prepared to hand over $400 to $950 or more.
Conversation sets, featuring outdoor seating with cushions and tables, can quickly set you back $600 to $1,400, if not more. That kind of pricing may make you wonder whether renting garden furniture might be cost effective.
Is Renting Garden Furniture Ever Cost Effective?
Although renting technically costs less than buying, there are plenty of reasons to question whether it’s a good choice. For starters, it doesn’t even have the best reputation.
If you still want to consider whether there’s any financial value to renting, you should at least comparison shop. Prices and inventories can vary considerably.
Since the items are outside, exposure to the elements is a guarantee. This means the company assumes a substantial amount of risk, so it may choose to avoid the category entirely.
Although there are some rental businesses that do offer garden furniture, a lot of it is marketed toward event planners. They usually focus on tables and chairs that someone may use for outdoor weddings and similar occasions, although some of it may be appropriate for backyards.
Costs Add Up Quick
The furniture rental company Cort does have some options for renting garden furniture, but the costs can add up quick.
For example, if you live in the Dallas, a three-month lease on a single padded armchair costs $202.50. For that price, you might be able to buy an entire bistro set at some home improvement stores.
If you want a dining table and four chairs at Cort, that costs $147 per month, bringing the three-month total to $441.
And, if you wanted them for a shorter period, such as just a month (the shortest term available), that same table and four chairs would still cost you the same $441.
What About Local Rental Stores?
In some cases, you may find options at local rental stores. However, these can be pretty expensive. At one south Florida store, a plastic patio table with an umbrella costs $20 per day. If you want four chairs, also plastic, that runs an additional $8 each day. At those prices, a full 30-day month would cost an astonishing $840. For that amount, you could buy a get a high-quality set and not have to give it back.
Even renting that same table and chairs for a four-day weekend isn’t really cost effective: You’d spend around $112. You can get a folding dining set at Walmart for $119 that comes with a table, four chairs, and an umbrella.
However, if you only need the items for a few days, such as for an event, then renting can be convenient. It eliminates the need to maintain the items over the long term, which can be ideal if you don’t have storage space.
Just Buy It Instead of Renting
Whether you should rent garden furniture depends on your needs and preferences. Renting garden furniture only makes sense for very short-term needs, especially events.
Renting is more about convenience and in most cases, convenience comes at a cost. So you may not save much money by renting.
If you were hoping to have outdoor furniture for the entire summer, buying is the most cost-effective option.
Not only can it cost you less, but you’d also have the opportunity to sell the set if you don’t want to keep it, giving you a way to recoup some of what you spent.
Ultimately, it’s a personal choice on how you want to proceed. Just never assume that renting is going to be cheaper. In a lot of cases, it isn’t.
Do the math before you sign a rental contract and see if you are really coming out ahead.
Readers, have you ever rented furniture in an attempt to save money? Tell us about it by posting in the comments section beneath this post.
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