Is there a word that can help me describe a period that isn't exactly a calendar month, but is meant to serve as a month regarding, say, a service or rental period?

For example - if my rental starts on the 15th of January, I am being billed for Jan 15 - Feb 14, then Feb 15 thru Mar 14, and so on.

Your contract isn't for complete months, rather for ________________.

What can I call these periods? I need "month" to be used strictly for calendar months. OR - say I call January a Calendar Month, this period would be a ___________ Month?

If I was talking about days, I could say 24 hours, but I can't do something similar here because there aren't always 30 days in these "months".

  • 1
    Why are you opposed to just calling it a month? It technically is a rental month. A month isn't always 30 days.
    – Hank
    Commented Dec 19, 2016 at 16:17
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    It's my understanding that month would still be the best to describe a period from Jan 15th - Feb 14th. That's what is always used in the contracts I sign (leases, memberships, etc.), even though they don't span from the first to the last day in one specific month. Although, if you are looking to be legally specific for contract purposes, you may want to post in law.stackexchange.com, as it may be more suitable to this situation.
    – Hank
    Commented Dec 19, 2016 at 16:29
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    The stretch from Jan 15-Feb 14 is exactly one month, as is the stretch from Feb 15-Mar 14, even though one of them is 31 days and one is 28 days. The contract does not begin on the start of a month, but its duration is for whole-month periods.
    – Hellion
    Commented Dec 19, 2016 at 16:35
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    @DAE I do see what you're trying to do but you're reserving the only word to describe this by using it to describe something that calendar month can describe. Why do you have to use month to describe a calendar month?
    – Hank
    Commented Dec 19, 2016 at 16:38
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    @DAE That's where I disagree. A calendar month is specific type of month-long period. If it wasn't, it would just be called month and calendar month wouldn't exist. I'm not trying to be extremely argumentative but, if you really are writing a contract, you need to be literal, based on facts and definitions, and not account for what you or someone else may think a month is. Just because someone hears month and thinks a calendar month doesn't mean you can use month in a contract and it explicitly mean calendar month. I think you should only use calendar month to describe calendar month.
    – Hank
    Commented Dec 19, 2016 at 16:44

2 Answers 2


I would say solar month if I wanted to be absolutely certain that "month" is interpreted as a period of a certain amount of days and hours.

However, calendar month is technically the term for what you describe, although someone may misinterpret as "January", "February" and so on:

The period of duration from the same date of one month to the same date of the next month, and thus can be 28, 29 during a leap year, 30 or 31 days long. For example the duration from 21st January to 20th February.

(from https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/calendar_month ).

  • upvote for the interesting and surprising wiktionary entry! I really think Calendar Month implies the "misinterpreted" meaning though. But its hard to argue...
    – DAE
    Commented Jan 1, 2017 at 6:35

Consider using 'elapsed month'.

Elapse (MW, intransitive verb)

pass, go by "four years elapsed before he returned"

In your case:

Your contract isn't for calendar months, but rather for elapsed months (i.e. the 15th of January to the 14th of February)

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