Trip Planning - 16 min read

Can You Live In A Hotel? (Hotel Policies For Long-Term Guests!)

Betty Nelson

Betty Nelson, Updated October 9, 2022

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Staying in a hotel has many advantages, as these establishments exist to provide luxury. You get access to quality amenities and facilities and ultra-comfortable rooms.

Also, there’s security to keep you safe. However, staying in a hotel and living in a hotel are different. You can stay in a hotel, but can you live in a hotel?

You can live in hotels, and it’s not illegal. So long as you pay your bills, no one will ask you to leave. However, it will incur sizable costs. Most hotels, especially in big cities, are super expensive. If you want to live in a hotel, it’s best to talk to the manager and negotiate a lower cost.

Some hotels offer price discounts to customers who book lodging for up to seven nights. The discounts get even higher if you stay for up to a month. In some hotels, you become exempt from paying lodging taxes after living for 90 days.

However, living in a hotel is not always convenient. Sometimes the environment gets noisy if there are many lodgers, which is common during festive periods. Getting ample parking space can be a hassle too. 

Why Should You Live in a hotel?

You should live in a hotel if you are going to stay in a different location temporarily for a long time. It mostly has to do with work.

For example, living in a hotel is a good idea if you get a temporary or seasonal job in a different city. Signing a lease for an apartment may be more expensive and risky since you don’t know how long you’ll be staying. It could be weeks or months.

Similarly, living in a hotel is ideal if you are moving to a new, expensive city, perhaps to begin a new life. New York, for example, is one such city. If you’re new, you may find it more affordable to live in a hotel than rent a room.

Furthermore, it can be challenging to rent an apartment if you have no references or valid credit history. In such situations, a hotel can be a lifesaver.

What Is Living in a Hotel Like?

Living in a hotel is a luxury experience. However, it depends on the hotel as there are some sub-standard hotels. Nevertheless, the best ones provide ample living space with staff at your service.

The hotel staff handles home tasks daily, such as cleaning the room, making the bed, and providing fresh towels. In addition, most hotels offer laundry services if you want to wash your clothes.

Furthermore, within the hotel, you can access restaurants and bars where you can chill. The big hotels have swimming pools and game rooms where you can have fun. You become familiar with the staff and customer service as you live in the hotel. Subsequently, you’ll receive better and more personalized treatment.

Living in a hotel is relatively safe. Thanks to the guards and digital security, you have a low chance of losing your belongings. In addition, the hotel has repair staff on standby if there’s any malfunction.

Regarding payment, living in a hotel can simplify things. You pay a single bill for all charges – lodging, water, and electricity, to name a few.

Related Read: Can You Vape In A Hotel Room?

Is It Illegal To Live in a Hotel?

You don’t break any laws by living in a hotel, so it’s not illegal. If you live in a hotel, the legal question is whether you are a tenant. Generally, anyone who lodges in a hotel is a guest and hence not protected by the law.

Tenant rights in most US states protect tenants from unlawful landlord behavior. As a tenant, your landlord cannot trespass on your rented property without your consent, for example. Also, your landlord cannot end your tenancy before the lease period elapses.

As a guest in a hotel, you may not have such legal protections. The hotel management is responsible for your well-being and can enter your room with or without your permission. However, this rarely happens. It usually happens if the hotel management has reason to believe that you’re doing something illegal.

Notably, you shouldn’t mistake living in a hotel for an Airbnb. Living in an Airbnb has some legal restrictions.

Related Read: Do You Have To Check Out of A Hotel?

How Much Would It Cost a Month To Live in a Hotel?

How much it costs to live in a hotel monthly is subjective, but you should expect no less than $1,000. Data shows that the average daily rate of hotels in the US is around $125. Going by that amount, the monthly cost would be $3,750.

Nevertheless, there are still some very cheap hotels, costing less than $25 per night. Renting such cheap hotels will incur a monthly expense of less than $750. Typically, you get substantial discounts if you stay for a month or longer.

However, the room charge isn’t the only expense you’ll pay while living in a hotel. You’ll also pay for food, drinks, state use tax, and telephone service, to name a few. These extra expenses depend on the hotel’s policy. For example, some hotels will allow you to cook food, but most will not.

Is It Cheaper To Just Live in a Hotel?

Living in a hotel is usually expensive compared to living in an apartment. If you rent an apartment, you typically won’t enjoy the same luxury and customer service you get in a hotel.

Nonetheless, living in a hotel can be cheaper in some situations. Consider living in Los Angeles, for example. The average rent cost per month is $2,734. Apartment rents of $1,000 and below make up just 1% of the total.

On the other hand, you can find hotels in Los Angeles that charge around $65 per day. If you opt for the hotel, you’ll spend less than the average rent cost, as it’ll cost around $2,000 monthly.

However, you may not get the best of luxury with such cheap hotels. A 3-star hotel in Los Angeles costs around $120 per day, which is over $3,500 per month. Furthermore, hotel prices can change at any time.

Related Read: Can You Pay Cash For Hotels?

Can You Live in a Hotel For 4 Months?

You can live in a hotel for 4 months or even longer. However, it depends on the hotel. Different hotels have different regulations. If you plan to live in a hotel for up to four months, you can opt for extended-stay hotels. Unlike regular hotels, extended-stay hotels offer long-term accommodation and have relaxed rules.

Rather than daily prices, these hotels fix weekly and monthly prices. In addition, most extended stay hotels offer in-suite amenities like self-serve laundry and kitchens. As a result, you can wash your clothes and make food yourself.

Related Read: How Late Can You Check Into A Hotel?

How Can I Live in a Hotel For a Few Months?

If you intend to live in a hotel for a few months, there are things you must consider. Overall, your budget and preference are the most important, as you’ll want to make sure you get your money’s worth. Here are some tips to help you:

1. Determine the Price of the Hotel.

The most important factor when selecting a hotel is price. If you can’t pay the charges, you can’t live in the hotel for months.

You should search for a hotel to live in according to your budget. Note that your budget also determines the luxury you’ll enjoy. Typically, you’ll enjoy more luxury at a 5-star hotel, which is the most expensive.

Nevertheless, you don’t always have to break the bank to get a good hotel. You can search hotel booking websites and filter the options to find good hotels at workable prices.

2. Choose a Hotel with Good Customer Service.

Spending months in a hotel with poor customer service is the last thing anyone wants to experience. You won’t be comfortable and may need to leave earlier than planned.

Customer service transcends the treatment you get from the hotel staff. It also involves the services available. For example, you may need laundry, Wi-Fi, a bar, a restaurant, or a kitchen to cook your meals.

To make things easier, you should first list the services you expect from a hotel. Afterward, you can begin your search.

3. Pick a Hotel with a Suitable Location.

The location of the hotel you plan to live in for a few months matters a lot. Suppose you decide to live in a hotel because you’re undertaking a seasonal job. In that case, you’ll need to pick a hotel close to your workplace.

Similarly, suppose you want to live in a hotel because you’re on an extended vacation in a new city. In that case, you’ll need a hotel in a location from where you can easily explore the city. To sum it all up, you should pick a hotel in a suitable location.

4. Opt for a Large Room.

Since you’ll be staying in the hotel for a long time, it’s natural to go for a large room. You’ll need the space to store your belongings.

Furthermore, you may entertain visitors during your stay at the hotel. In particular, a small room isn’t an option if you’re lodging with someone else.

Opting for a large room may strain your budget somewhat, but it’s worth it. In addition, getting a large hotel room doesn’t mean getting a deluxe one. A standard hotel room is still ideal.

5. Come with Your Own Food Supply.

As mentioned before, one of the primary challenges of living in a hotel for months is the price. You can save yourself some money if you bring your food supply. Ordering hotel food may be expensive.

Furthermore, you may not like the type of food available. Perhaps you do, but the hotel cook doesn’t prepare it right.

However, you have to check the hotel policy since most hotels don’t let customers cook in their rooms. If that’s the case, you can find an alternative food supply nearby. Since the hotel is responsible for your well-being, you may need to sign a declaration to confirm that you’re bringing food from outside.

6. Pick a Hotel That’s Suitable for Your Lifestyle.

If an environment doesn’t suit your lifestyle, it’ll be tough to live there for months. A hotel is no different. To know if a hotel suits your lifestyle, you should check its policy and surroundings.

For example, if you live with a pet, you will need a pet-friendly hotel. Some hotels allow dogs but not cats, while for others, it’s the reverse. You should confirm all of these.

Another instance is if you’re a vegan. In that case, you’ll fare better with a hotel with vegan restaurants, animal-free furniture, and cleaning equipment.

How Long Can You Live in a Hotel?

You can live in a hotel for as long as you want. There’s no limit to how long you can live, so long as you pay your charges. Hence, the hotel benefits from you occupying one of their rooms.

However, some hotels can limit how long you can live. You’ll know from the hotel’s policy if there’s such a limit. If the policy says you can only live for a month, you shouldn’t go against it.

As a result, you should only book a hotel whose policy matches how long you intend to live. In addition, irrespective of whether the hotel has a duration limit policy, it’s ideal to notify the hotel management of how long you plan to stay beforehand.

That way, they can prepare how best to serve you. They may have exclusive rooms for long-stay lodgers, for example.

What is The Longest You Can Stay in a Hotel?

The longest you can stay in a hotel depends on the hotel’s policy. Most hotels will allow you to stay for as long as you want. You only need to pay your bills when due.

However, hotels with limits on stay duration will only let you stay for one or two months. This is typical with lower-end hotels. In some US states, you can become a legal tenant if you stay in a hotel for over 28 or 30 days.

If that’s true, some hotels in the area may not let you stay for more than 28 or 30 days. If you become a tenant under local laws, you may be eligible for much lower charges. Also, staying in a hotel for 28 or 30 days may interfere with tax laws. The hotel management may want to avoid these.

Is It Cheaper To Live in a Hotel or an Apartment?

Practically, it’s cheaper to live in an apartment than in a hotel. In a hotel, you are not only paying for the living space but also for the customer service and security you receive. The average hotel is more furnished than the average apartment, which also adds to the cost.

In a hotel, you pay for tasks you would have done yourself if you lived in an apartment. For example, you may want to clean the room or make the bed, which is the hotel staff’s job. The staff will come around to check that the room is in order, whether you arrange it yourself or not.

You don’t pay individually for these services, but they accumulate to form your hotel bill.

Furthermore, you can prepare your food in an apartment, but some hotels won’t allow it. Regularly purchasing food will undoubtedly strain your finances.

How Long Can You Stay in a Hotel Without Paying?

You can usually stay in a hotel for up to 24 hours without paying. This is because most hotels charge at check-outs rather than check-ins, and 24 hours is the standard for a one-day booking.

However, you cannot stay in a hotel for free. Ultimately, you must pay, no matter how short or long you stay. If you fail to pay your bill at check out, the hotel management can give you a grace period. How long the period lasts depends on the hotel’s policy and the duration of your stay.

If you’ve stayed in a hotel for more than 30 days and are now a tenant, the hotel will likely issue a 14-day notice to demand payment or eviction. The hotel can take legal action against you if you fail to pay your bills after the 14th day. However, if you’ve not stayed in the hotel for up to 30 days, the hotel can force you to leave immediately. 

How Do I Survive Living in a Hotel?

Living in a hotel doesn’t have to be different from living in an apartment. However, you may feel like you’re living in an impersonal space since you didn’t set up the room yourself.

You can solve this by bringing some personal items. It could be a tabletop picture, an alarm clock, books, a calendar, or even a familiar air freshener. All these can make you feel like you’re living in your apartment.

Furthermore, try to cut down on expenses whenever you can. The hotel staff may offer to do everything for you. At the end of your stay, they pile up on your bill. Hence, it’s OK to turn down some offers. Still, if you want to survive living in a hotel, it’s necessary to maintain a good relationship with the staff.

Can You Permanently Stay in a Hotel?

It’s possible to stay permanently in a hotel. However, hotels have different policies, so it may not work for some. If you plan to stay in a hotel permanently, you should opt for an apartment hotel instead of a regular hotel.

Apartment hotels – also called extended hotels, residential hotels, or apart-hotels – are exclusive to long-term lodging, just like apartments. However, they offer standard hotel services like housekeeping and food. They usually have full kitchens and many bedrooms.

Living in an apartment hotel is like living in an apartment, but with hotel services. There are no fixed contracts, meaning you can check out at any time you want. As you probably guessed, such hotels are relatively expensive. 

Cost of Living in a Hotel by Location

Location significantly influences how much you pay to live in a hotel. For example, you cannot compare the cost of living in a hotel in Oklahoma City to that of a hotel in New York City. Undoubtedly, living in a hotel in New York City will be more expensive.

Check out the cost of living in a hotel in some popular US cities below:

How Much Does It Cost to Live in a Las Vegas Hotel?

The average cost of booking a hotel in Las Vegas is around $140 per day. Hence, if you choose to live in a Las Vegas hotel, you will pay up to $4,200 per month.

In comparison, the average rent for an apartment in Las Vegas is around $1,200. On average, you can rent a one-bedroom apartment for about $1,000, while a two-bedroom apartment can be up to $1,300.

Clearly, living in a hotel in a city like Las Vegas is far more expensive than living in an apartment. Nevertheless, these are average prices, and you can always get cheaper options.

How Much Does It Cost To Live in a San Antonio Hotel?

San Antonio is one of the most affordable cities in Texas, with the cost of living lower than the national average by over 10%. You can book a 3-star hotel in San Antonio for around $60 per night. Living in such a hotel will cost up to $1,800 per month.

If you want more luxury, you can opt for a 4-star hotel, which costs around $110 per night. Hence, you will pay up to $3,300 a month to live in a 4-star hotel in San Antonio. However, as usual, you can always get price discounts since you’ll stay for a long time.

How Much Does It Cost To Live in a Los Angeles Hotel?

Los Angeles is an expensive city, with an average rent cost of up to $2,734. The best hotels are also pricey, at around $120 per day, which is over $3,500 per month.

Hence, it’s more affordable to live in an apartment than in a hotel in Los Angeles. Nevertheless, some good hotels in the city charge around $65 per day. Going with that rate, living will cost around $2,000 every month.

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