As previously discussed in this space, it’s often more advantageous for travel nurses to take per diem or a housing stipend. If you’ve yet to read up on the benefits of per diem or a housing stipend, click that link. Nurses decide to travel for a plethora of reasons, but most commonly, they choose travel to make more money. Per diem or housing stipends make that goal more plausible. And if you’re traveling to increase your income, this article is for you.
There are several housing options you simply must know about it, but one in particular is really standing out. If you’ve never heard of Airbnb, open another tab and let Google introduce you. Airbnb presents arguably the best housing options for travel nurses to ensure they get the most bang for their buck.
What is Airbnb? According to their site:
Founded in August of 2008 and based in San Francisco, California, Airbnb is a trusted community marketplace for people to list, discover, and book unique accommodations around the world — online or from a mobile phone or tablet.
Think Uber, but for housing. Property owners can list their property for rent through Airbnb. The listing will include multiple pictures, as well as ratings from real people who have already stayed there.
Most impressive about this service, travel nurses have options. Nurses more interested in quality housing and comfort can rent an entire property if they want. You may not achieve the savings, but you can reserve exceptional housing at a competitive rate.
Shared Housing Options
We should state up front that HCTN does not recommend or advocate shared housing – we’re merely presenting options for nurses willing to do so, as the savings can be extraordinary. If these are options you consider viable, do use every tool at your disposal to screen property owners. Peer user reviews is a great place to start, but do your due diligence before you decide to share a home with any person you’ve never met.
That said, one shared housing option is to rent a guest house, or a part of someone’s house that can accommodate someone else independently. Maybe it’s a pool house, or a finished basement – whatever the case, this option ensures your own bathroom and kitchen, like it was your own place. This demands a more outgoing personality though because the property owner will usually be living at home even during your stay. Those are details you can work out up front. But again, the trade-off is a greatly reduced cost.
The last option is to literally rent a spare bedroom in someone’s home. That is available too and is easily the most affordable; however, do exercise caution. Living in someone’s home, sharing their kitchen and bathroom isn’t for everyone. If you do choose this route for savings, use the reviews and everything at your disposal to make an informed decision.
So how does it work? Find a desired place at a desired price. Check the reviews to ensure it’s a place that can accommodate you comfortably. The booking process is simple. If you book for three months, the average length of a travel nursing assignment, they will automatically charge your card every month, with the first month charged up front – just like if you were setting up a regular apartment.
More helpful is the fact that Airbnb is mobile friendly, intuitive and extremely easy to use. The booking process is rapid; the availability is displayed in real-time, and the fees are extremely low.
There are of course similar services to Airbnb – shorttermhousing.com, corporatehousingbyowner.com and VRBO – but before looking into those, you should drop by Airbnb first. Chances are, any housing options on either of those three are on Airbnb anyways.