Travel Nurse Housing 101

Health Carousel Travel Nursing
July 20, 2015
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Questions about travel nurse housing can be answered in one Google search, but as your research will demonstrate, not all staffing agencies are created equally. I’ve been a travel housing coordinator for years. Having worked for more than one travel nursing agency, I’ve seen the good and the bad. I’ve heard the same questions more times than I can count, so I know that housing can be very stressful.

You have a ton of questions about your next assignment. It can be challenging to find housing that meets your needs, matches your lifestyle and still falls within your housing budget, but that’s where my negotiation skills are useful. Regardless of whether you decide to take company paid housing while on assignment with us, or if you choose to take a housing stipend and set up housing on your own, my research and resources are always available to you.

What does the travel and housing coordinator do for me?

When you accept a travel nursing assignment, you need a place to live for what’s typically a 13-week period. The person in my role ensures you’re set up in a place that accommodates your lifestyle. Everyone is different, but you work with enough nurses and after a while, you see the same things. I say this to illustrate the fact that no matter how special the request or unique the circumstances you may have, chances are, we’ve seen it and know how to help. Always ask.

The first step in this process is research, and don’t worry, I’ll be doing all of it. As a housing coordinator, I research housing for all new hospital contracts in order to find the best priced, most quality option in your new area. Once you’re submitted for a new assignment, I’ll usually call for your preferences on housing, which is an important call because it determines what happens next.

Remember, before even speaking to me, you have options. You can either accept a housing stipend and handle your own living situation entirely independent from me, which is totally fine – I will still provide my resources to you if you need them.

The second option is to take company housing, a scenario where we handle everything from research to signing a lease; it’s done through us and all you need to do is show up with your stuff and the key. (This isn’t the right article for this, but there are tax implications surrounding your housing finance option. We’ll have something on that soon, but for now, check out Blue Pipes, they’ve been pumping content on the tax implications of travel nurse housing.)

Speaking of showing up –  I’ll take care of that too. I arrange any air travel or rental car needs. There is also the common option of driving your own vehicle to the assignment and in this case you’ll be reimbursed on a per mile basis according to federal standard mileage rates.

My work doesn’t stop once you’re moved in either. During the course of your assignment, I’ll be in touch to address any concerns from either you or the property owner. If you took the company housing options, I’ll be the one making payments on it so you don’t have to deal with any of that. When it’s time to move, I handle all of the move-up, pickup and disconnection notices before finally coordinating your move out.

If your assignment is extended, I’ll ensure your stay at your interim home extends with it.

But what about my special needs?

You aren’t the first to have unique or special circumstances, you won’t be the last. Traveling with a pet? Wanting to bring along a significant other? Provided options are available in your new area, I will do everything I can to honor your request and find you accommodating housing. There may be costs associated when bringing along pets or a significant other, at least when you get in the business of adding additional bed or bathrooms, so just be aware of those.

Sometimes traditional apartments or housing simply aren’t enough to meet your needs. Another separator of HCTN is that I utilize all available housing resources, including gorgeous vacation housing! When an apartment or temporary house won’t cut it, I personally exhaust every option before calling the closest hotel. This isn’t common in the travel nursing industry so just ask housing coordinators at other travel nursing agencies where they draw the line.

If you do need a hotel, I’ll negotiate the best rates. And again, if your assignment gets extended, I’ll make sure your hotel agreement does too. If that extension changes your flight plans, do not sweat it. HCTN covers the cost of one flight change in case your assignment goes longer than the original 13 weeks we planned.

Cool, what else?

Fine, if all of that isn’t enough, at Health Carousel Travel Nursing, we can be real helpful, if you want. I’ll help you find things to do around your area. You may dismiss this now, but tell me what there is to do in Shiprock, New Mexico or Anchorage, Arkansas. On top of that, I’ll find the best public transportation for you if you want and help you track down the nearest grocery store to keep your fridge stocked.  I’m like Apple’s Siri if she actually worked.

What more is there to say? I live for the “it’s perfect!”, “it’s beautiful” and the “I never want to leave” comments. I work hard on these things so that you don’t have to. In a nutshell, that’s what you can expect from me at Health Carousel Travel Nursing, and hopefully wherever you’ve signed on to travel nurse.

Health Carousel Travel Nursing

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Interested in how the pay stacks up in other states not on this list? Our trusty Super Nurse sidekicks are standing by to answer any questions you have. Click below to get information on opportunities in other states!

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