You can distinguish between someone who's paying for a room and paying for an apartment or house with lodger versus tenant.

Is it possible to distinguish between someone who offers a room for rent and offers an apartment or house for rent? Are there any hyponyms for "landlord" that make this distinction?

I checked onelook.com's reverse dictionary, and the thesauri recommended on meta, and didn't find anything.

5 Answers 5


Well tenant is the antonym of landlord.

From Oxford English Dictionary (OED):

landlord, n.

Originally, a lord or owner of land; in recorded use applied only spec. to the person who lets land to a tenant.

tenant, n

One who holds a piece of land, a house, etc., by lease for a term of years or a set time. (The ordinary current sense. Correlative to landlord.)

Lodger would also strangely be the closest antonym for lodger.

From OED:

lodger, n.

One who resides as an inmate in another person's house, paying a certain sum periodically for the accommodation.

One who lodges a person; a host. Obs.

Renter may also apply, depending on how the word is used:

renter, n

A person who collects rents (esp. those belonging to a corporate body), taxes, or tribute.

Or host:

host, n

A man who lodges and entertains for payment; a man who keeps a public place of lodging or entertainment; the landlord of an inn.

  • 3
    Lodger-lodger weirdness is just odd. :D Jan 17, 2013 at 12:49

The word that comes to mind is homeowner, and this source uses it in the context you mention.


In this discussion of boarding-house on Wikipedia (yes, a less-than-authoritative reference) the persons renting are referred to as lodgers. The operator is referred to as landlord. The term rooming house also seems to be used interchangeably.

While I have never seen such usage, the terms boarding-house keeper or boarding-house owner (or rooming house keeper or owner) would seem appropriate. It should be noted that boarding-houses and rooming houses usually provided some meals, and that is not suggested in the original question.


Lessor is the word for somebody who leases something, which is a more general and impersonal term than landlord/-lady.

  • I was after a more specific term, not a more general term.
    – Golden Cuy
    Jan 17, 2013 at 11:32

It seems, though, that the words "lodger" and "renter" might be used meaning the opposite things, depending on the conext, while the words "landlord/landlady or lesser" and "tenant" are far less ambiguous...

  • Welcome to EL&U Dennis! I don't believe that you are answering the question at hand. I am actually a bit confused by what you are saying. The question is about how to specify whether a landlord is letting a room or a house/apartment. In a little while with some more 'reputation' you will be able to leave comments. This might better fit as a comment.
    – Unrelated
    May 6, 2016 at 19:06

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