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Where in the HECK do I find housing??

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I got an assignment, now where do I find housing!?!?

Traveling as a healthcare professional can be great in so many aspects, but finding housing can be a real pain in the you know what!  Having your agency provide housing, does make things convenient but it may not be the most lucrative way to go about things.  It may also be a good idea to make your own decisions about housing including; location, size, amenities etc.  You probably like to pick your own dinner of the menu don’t you?

Regardless of where you are looking, it is always a good idea to get some insight from locals who have been there and done that.  If a hospital is using travelers currently, then they likely have before.  Make sure you ask the hiring manager where people have stayed before.  If you can’t get any recommendations that way, then a good stop is always the city’s chamber of commerce site.  Their goal is to have people visiting and conducting business there, to have a nice experience.

If you don’t need a ton of amenities, then its motels/hotels/suites/and extended stay options for you.  They typically offer very competitive rates, and offer the most liquidity.  Meaning, you can easily get out of that arrangement if its not working for you or if something comes up on your assignment requiring you to vacate.  Some offer amenities such as hot breakfasts, indoor pools, and in suite kitchens.  Make sure you check with your Focus Staff recruiter on corporate discounts we have with these type of arrangements.  Remember, most rates are negotiable-especially when you are staying for a month or longer!

If you are looking for an apartment, and the amenities that it may offer there are a few things to consider.  READ THE LEASE carefully.  You’ll want to make sure you have language for a short term lease, with no penalties.  Apartments may be slightly more comfortable, but leases are incredibly hard and costly to get out of.  The best idea is to do a short term corporate apartment set up, which bundles the rent/utilities/furniture/cable/internet and more for convenience.

Some great resources to find houses are www.airbnb.com and www.vrbo.com.  In both of these sites, you can typically contact the owners of the homes and negotiate lower rates for long term stays.  I think that www.craigslist.com is another good resource but I would make sure you visit the housing first hand before you secure it and certainly before you make any financial commitments.  Remember, there is always fraud out there on the web!

A recent resource would be the traveler forums on Facebook, which are dedicated solely to your actual profession and some are dedicated solely to housing.  Its likely that someone else has taken an assignment where you are about to go, and they have insight on the area.  Some other specialty websites are: www.officialpethotels.com, www.hotelengine.com, and www.travelershaven.com.

Regardless of which direction you think you want to go, always consult with your recruiter as they should walk you thru options and the best way to go about securing housing that works for you!