Furnished vs Unfurnished

Published August 1st, 2020


We've analysed every single property let in Manchester City Centre over the last year - nearly 11,500 in total - to bring you the most comprehensive comparison into rents achieved for furnished or unfurnished properties and which option is best for both landlords and tenants. The report also includes an analysis of flexible landlords who offer tenants a choice between having their home furnished or unfurnished.

The data we used were property listings from a multitude of sources from between June 2019 and June 2020. We then analysed the description data for these properties, selectively picking out those which detailed whether they were furnished or unfurnished. Rental data is presented gross (£ pcm) as well as per sq.ft. per annum to ensure a thorough like-for-like comparison is made between apartments in Manchester City Centre offering furnished, unfurnished or flexible. 

Choosing whether or not to offer an apartment furnished or unfurnished is a major part of the decision-making process for landlords big and small. This report offers a data and statistics-led approach to answer this question in a Manchester City Centre context, and is the first of its kind to do so.


Manchester City Centre has seen incredible growth in recent years, from a population of 3,000 in 2001 to over 60,000 today, and nearly 65% of households here rent. With a further 26,500 apartments now under construction or proposed in the city, the question over whether or not to furnish them has never been more pertinent.


So, what do we mean by furnished or unfurnished? Unfurnished does not necessarily mean empty, and properties which are unfurnished are generally still expected to include kitchen and bathroom fixtures, including a washing machine, carpets, curtains and blinds. Furnished properties generally include all of the above, as well as a bed in each bedroom, a sofa, wardrobe and other storage units and a dining table/chairs if there is space. Since properties which are “part-furnished” are open to interpretation, they have simply been included in this data as “furnished”.


Some more flexible landlords are able to offer prospective tenants a choice – furnished or unfurnished - and this variable has also been included in this report for comparison purposes.


This report is not affiliated with any lettings agents or furniture providers. Studio apartments are not included in this report as they are mostly furnished and we were not able to find enough unfurnished studios to be able to make a reliable comparison. This report is not stating or predicting what rents will be achieved for providing furnished/ unfurnished, but rather it is a comparison between furnish types on the market in central Manchester currently.

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