Here's an alternative to renting you may not have thought of: buying a houseboat. If you live somewhere like the Bay Area, or on a coast, a houseboat might be the most cost effective rental or own you have!
31 Remodeling Ideas You Obviously Need In Your Future Home
I just love this idea for a laundry chute because Im wild about boats. oceans, lakes, rivers, fish, seaweed, zebra mussels on shipwrecks that slice your hand open - its so calming to me. I dont think this is necessarily elegant, but I would love to see it everyday.