During this time in the pandemic, many nurses have made the decision to begin their journey as travel nurses. If you did not know, travel nurses are nurses that work in different states and cities away from their home residence. I have received many questions about travel nursing and the main one is about travel nurse housing.
Disclaimer: any and all information provided is from my experience, speaking with travel agencies, and information from other travel nurses. Every experience is different and may not apply to you.
What to know:
As a travel nurse, it is important to look for housing in the area of interest before signing a contract. Personally, I look at places in the city or near the facility that is quoted to me (by the agency's recruiter) and look for pricing of the apartments, condos, or rooms. Many people travel for the money, but others travel for the environment and the experience. Looking for housing is reflected on your experience while you are there and if you want amenities.
In order to be considered for supplemental housing, the travel nurse is to live at least 200 miles away from their residential home, in most cases. The application process with the travel agencies will require proof of residency via identification card or original state licensure.
Company Housing vs Housing Stipend
Company Housing is provided by the travel nurse agency. When taking company housing, the agency will find housing for the nurse and pay for the nurse's room or apartment weekly or monthly. The nurse has no discretion in where he or she will live or what type of housing will be provided. Also, when taking company housing the nurse's weekly pay will be decreased to cover the expenses.
Housing Stipend is completely different from company housing. When taking the housing stipend, the nurse is responsible for finding his or her own housing before the start date of the contract or when arriving to the location. The amount of the payment of the stipends depends on the state and the cost of living in the area. There is a stipend provided to the nurse for each contracted week unless the nurse does not complete all of the required work hours. One thing to take into consideration with the stipend is that the nurse will be responsible for covering their housing for the first month until he or she receives their first week's paycheck, You will not be paid ahead of time before starting the contract.
Where to find personal housing?
GroupMe groups for traveler housing (networking essential)