The demand for quality healthcare is steadily increasing. Now more than ever, communities need qualified health practitioners. Many hospitals have turned to “Traveling Nurses”, health practitioners like RNs and physical therapists who rotate from hospital to hospital to serve short term needs.
This represents an opportunity for landlords, and carries many benefits. Traveling nurses stay longer than the typical short term renter, but shorter than a standard annual leaser. Their travel is paid for by the hospital, in the form of a sizable stipend. And they are typically favorable tenants / guests, as they spend most of their time either working long shifts or recovering from those long shifts.
I recently had the opportunity to speak with a recruiter who places traveling nurses in hospitals and coordinates their housing needs. She shared with me some interesting insights which I thought you might find valuable too.
The weekly housing stipend a traveling nurse receives can vary, based upon vocation and the location. Typically RN’s receive $600 a week for housing (this is in addition to their normal pay, and potentially food stipends as well). Certain occupations, like physical therapists, will earn a lower stipend. Since the traveling nurse gets to keep whatever they do not spend on housing, most are price conscious. They may also have preconceived notions of reasonable housing rates if they are from an area that enjoys a lower cost of living.
One comment I found particularly interesting was that most traveling nurses don’t have enough money for a large down payment. As such, landlords may need to be flexible in terms of their required up front commitment.
The number of traveling nurses who are willing to share a space with another person versus those who want their own space is split evenly. With that said, most all of them want at least their own bathroom. Many family oriented traveling nurses will travel with their family, and as such want their own space – normally a single family home with enough rooms for each person in the household versus an apartment.
Since they are working long hours, traveling nurses appreciate amenities that save them time or money. One of the most popular amenities is a weekly maid service. This isn’t a requirement, but it is a nice bonus which helps differentiate your property from others.
Most traveling nurses have their own vehicles, and consequently prefer housing that includes parking. The obvious exception to this is if the host location is in a highly urban area where everything is walkable – like New York City for example.
While most employment contracts are 13 weeks, traveling nurses look for weekly or monthly housing. They avoid housing with long term commitments.
The most popular sites where traveling nurses look for housing are Furnished Finder, VRBO, and AirBNB.
Renting to traveling nursing can be very lucrative. Hopefully you’ve found the insight I’ve provided helpful.