As a travelling nurse or medical professional you are away from home quite often and usually for long periods of time. If you move to a new location every thirteen weeks or even a just a couple of times per year you know that there are many steps and costs involved in securing clean, safe, and cost effective temporary furnished housing solutions.
Last month I introduced this series that will fully describe how much cost and time are actually involved in setting up just one temporary furnished apartment and mentioned that by using a professional company like Travel-Nurse-Housing.com can save you 25-50% on the costs of doing it yourself, not to mention the valuable hours (additional real costs) you will save by making one phone call and trusting the experts to do it for you. This post will begin by describing some of the steps involved in locating and securing the first ingredient in the temporary housing recipe for success.
The Apartment – There are 16 steps involved just in locating and securing an apartment that will rent to you on a short term basis. Here are the first four steps:
Step 1- You will need to locate an apartment community in a convenient, safe, location with the resident profile you are looking for. If you are not familiar with the area, you will need to spend time searching for properties in the area to determine suitability for your needs. You can probably count on this step taking 1-2 hours or more of your valuable time, plus you will need an internet connection and probably a printer to print the property profiles so that you can take notes as you call each one. By using a professional resource, all you need to do is make one phone call and then wait for your options.
Step 2- You will need to find an apartment community that will consider a month-to-month or very short term agreement. In most markets, an individual will not be able to secure a short term lease unless you pay a very significant premium as high as $300-$400 on top of the base rents per month, and in some states like Florida, you will most likely not be able to get lease terms less than seven months. You will spend another 1-2 hours calling each property you found in the first step just to determine if they will provide lease terms that fit your needs. More time down the drain, and a significant cost increase as well if you have to pay the premium. A professional company already has established relationships with many suitable communities and can save those premium costs because of the volume of business produced and pre-negotiated rates usually better than offered to the general public. Just call and ask for two or three options and a good company will get those to you within a couple of hours.
[pullquote]A professional company already has established relationships with many suitable communities and can save those premium costs because of the volume of business produced and pre-negotiated rates usually better than offered to the general public.[/pullquote]
Step 3- You will need to complete an application and pay a non-refundable application fee at each apartment community that suits your needs, provided you have been able to get through the first two steps. Typical application fees are $50-$100, and the time it takes to receive, fill out, send back and wait for an approval typically takes 24-48 hours. For individual travelers, this could take even more time due to your transient status or current work load. For staffing companies, imagine doing this for each traveler!!! What a huge time and cost commitment!!! Working with a housing company, these fees are usually waived and you don’t have to wait for approval at the community you desire because the company secures the apartment for you in its own name.
Step 4- You will need to have a credit check done on yourself and/or your company. Let’s say you have gotten past the first 3 steps, paid your application fees and now have to wait for a credit check as well. What happens if you or your company is denied? Now you have wasted a better part of two days and spent a couple hundred dollars that are just plain gone and that you will never get back. By working through a professional housing company, you can have all this done up front and only one time. For individuals, as you travel the country and need temporary housing in different locations, that company can use your information submitted the first time for all subsequent needs. Staffing companies can save a huge amount of time and cost allowing them to focus on placing more nurses rather than finding housing for them. What a perfect alliance!
As you can briefly see, these steps take a lot of time that you probably don’t have while you are worried about getting to your next travel nursing assignment. By securing a relationship with a travel nurse housing company that does this every day, you will be relieved of the headaches as well as the financial burdens associated with doing it alone. For housing coordinators, your life will be much easier as well by making one phone call instead of potentially hundreds for each new location you need.
Dan Gorman is a Certified Corporate Housing Professional member and an expert in the field of furnished housing for traveling nurses. Please visit www.travel-nurse-housing.com for more information about travel nurse housing solutions and locations or email at Dan@travel-nurse-housing.com.