Whether you pass off the housing search to your medical staffing company or take the research into your own hands to find housing, you need to know where you’re laying your head at night. Finding temporary housing as a medical traveler can get stressful without the right info or resources. We’ve broken down the main travel housing categories so you can find your temporary home with ease.
The Ultimate Housing Guide For Traveling Medical Professionals
PET FRIENDLY HOUSING
Pets are like family, so naturally you’re going to bring your furry travel buddy. Pet friendly housing for travelers is a top request among traveling medical professionals, but just like finding a year-round, permanent home, there can sometimes be restrictions on your canine or feline pal. A lot of housing search sites will have a “pet-friendly” filter to search by, including this alphabetical list:
Search by city, then click on the All Filters option at the top of the page to filter by pets.
A top resource for traveling with dogs, whether finding a hotel, a restaurant, or dog friendly activities around your city.
One of the biggest databases of pet-friendly housing availabilities. Each listing has a pet icon to indicate if they allow pets.
Search by desired city, then click on the Pet option from the menus at the top of the page.
Shows pet restrictions right next to the apartment so you can easily see what size dogs they accept. The site also gives access to pet-friendly roommates if you are looking to rent or have a room for rent.
Additionally, there are some steps you can take to ensure you lock down your pet friendly housing:
• Contact available resources: Use the above list or contact the city’s humane society or animal care agency to see if they can provide a list of housing communities that allow pets. Any personal connections to real estate agents, rental agents, or resident managers can help too.
• Provide documentation: Gathering a letter of reference from a current or past landlord, proof of a dog training class, and veterinarian documentation stating that your pet is up-to-date on medical care.
• Address the issues: If there is a no-pets policy, ask if it was due to a negative experience and try to understand where the landlord is coming from. If you can get a little more info as to why pets aren’t allowed, it may help you make a more positive case for them to make an exception.
• Don’t jump at the first housing opportunity: Just because they allow pets doesn't mean it's right for you and your furry friend. Ask yourself how you can make your pet more comfortable in their new environment. Is there a park or walking path nearby for your dog to play? Plenty of sunlight and lookout points for your kitty? Do you have a good resource for pet sitting, should you need it? Our pets deserve the same amenities and sense of home as we do, so any extra steps you can take to ensure their comfort will help them adjust easier.
RV FRIENDLY HOUSING
So you’ve got a cute home on wheels! Living in an RV can save money on housing costs and can be a great way to explore new places at the drop of a hat. Imagine waking up every day (or maybe every few weeks) to new scenery outside your window! Small space living encourages you to get outside and explore, rather than sitting inside and lounging all the time. RV life isn’t for everybody, and there is maintenance to consider when springing for the traveler home life instead of your standard brick-and-mortar rental. Check out our two posts about How To Get Your RV Ready For Travel and How To Winterize Your RV to learn more about RV upkeep and seasonal maintenance.
FAMILY FRIENDLY HOUSING
Taking a travel assignment with your family and kids is a great experience for everyone! It just requires a little additional planning so you can get the right housing and amenities in line for your family. The only main things that will change when planning housing for your whole family are the amount of space you’ll need and whether or not they need their own mattresses and other home logistics. For instance:
• How many bedrooms do you need?
• What are the laundry facilities like? Are they included or is there a facility nearby?
• Is there a playground or park nearby?
• Is there a gym or pool nearby?
• Is there a school nearby?
• Is there a daycare nearby?
• Do you need additional storage for the other members of your family?
Traveling with kids is a rewarding experience for both you and them. They get to grow and learn, while seeing new cities and environments, and you get to spend time together as a family while seeing new places and having new adventures.
Bridging the gap between temporary stay and traditional housing…
When you’re traveling with your family, you want to normalize the environment as much as possible, especially with kids. Extended stay hotels are heavily utilized by travel nurses and traveling medical professionals as a bridge between temporary and traditional housing. Some travelers like the perks hotels provide like breakfast, housekeeping services, and fitness centers. Also, a lot of these hotels have kitchens, which can save money on food and can feel more like “home” to your family. Travelers can receive pre-negotiated rates for extended stay type of hotels too. Check out HotelEngine to find short stays in between contracts and to help pull your housing plans together.
BUDGET FRIENDLY HOUSING
Ideally, everyone would be able to find mad cheap housing with all the perks and amenities they want. But life is life, and everything has a price, right? Your best option is to create a realistic budget and go forth in your search. Stipend housing is a good choice if you’re looking to have more control over where you stay and what you spend. Tax free stipends for travelers can really help in the cost of living for your traveling medical career. Fusion Medical Staffing has recommended hotel sites and extended stay companies with negotiated rates to keep costs down too. When you become a Fusion medical traveler, you get discounted codes to use at these sites and others:
Other apartment resources to check out:
Financial tips for finding your perfect temporary home...
• Beware of “too good to be true” offers. Make sure the images aren’t doctored up or boasting an incredible asset for cheap (Um, free infinity pool plus a top-of-the line espresso machine? No possible way.) Also, match the price to the amenities and images. If the offer looks too good to be true, it unfortunately probably is.
• Avoid the catfish. Scammers are abound! Never send or wire money. Check out our post So You’ve Been Catfished By Temporary Housing to learn more about how you can avoid the scam life when looking for temporary housing.
• Vet your landlord. When talking with potential landlords online or over the phone, get their credentials. Read their ratings online, check with the Better Business Bureau, and don’t be afraid to ask them straight up for references. Remember to use your intuition and if something feels “off”—walk away.
Furnished housing can be a lifesaver when you’re looking at short term housing for one assignment, or extension. Why would you want to sit in a lawn chair in an empty apartment, surrounded by echoing walls? Better yet, why buy furniture for something temporary? Furnished housing is pretty much the norm for medical travelers on assignment these days. Corporate housing options are also a good go-to, since they specialize in the types of housing you’re looking for and vacation rental sites, like the ones listed below, can be helpful in finding your perfect place, complete with a coffee table and everything.
"So... what about my bed?"
Depending on what type of housing you find, you may need a bed. Furnished travel nurse housing or a hotel will have you all set up and ready, but what about a short-term apartment lease? To avoid snoozing on the floor, invest in a good quality air mattress with a pump. Some of them are very fancy and withstand the durability test of not even having a bedframe. Head to Amazon and grab this one. Or if you need a top-rated air mattress from a more detailed list, check out this Buyers Guide from The Sleep Judge.
You have a lot of decisions ahead of you after accepting a new assignment, including housing logistics. One of the biggest questions medical staffing companies get are how do travel nurses find housing. It can really make or break your medical travel experience over the next 13 weeks, so use all the resources available to you and be diligent about the type of housing that works for you.