Resources for Finding Housing During Winter Assignments

Written by Rose Torrento on Thursday, November 10, 2022 Posted in Travel Nurse Tips

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From the frigid Windy City of Chicago, IL, to the heavy snowfalls of Buffalo, NY, winter is a challenging season for many areas of the country. It’s no surprise that in places where inclement weather defines the season, there’s also high census and increased demand for travel nurses. Although these contracts can be lucrative career opportunities, many travel nurses quickly find themselves dealing with a unique problem: lack of housing availability. For those taking an agency-provided housing stipend, low winter vacancies can create a higher cost of living than expected.

Demand is high, but vacancies are low

Winter is often a great time for travel nurses to take assignments — particularly in regions affected by inclement weather. Facilities in these areas typically see high census during the winter months due to a variety of patient ailments. Cold and flu season is in full swing, and winter accidents bring in acute problems — all of which increase demand for skilled nurses.

Unfortunately, travel nursing in the winter months can bring unique challenges, like finding quality housing. In areas where weather is harsh, people tend to hunker down for the winter. Rental housing vacancies dip because fewer people are moving, leaving far fewer options available for travel nurses looking for short-term housing close to work. These circumstances can put a squeeze on a travel nurse’s housing stipend as well. Although the stipend correlates to an area’s cost of living, it might be more difficult to find suitable housing in your budget.

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Tried-and-true housing resources

Despite the challenges, hope isn’t lost for winter travel nurses. In addition to your travel nursing recruiter, there are plentiful resources online that can help you find and lease housing for your winter assignment. Bookmark these websites for your next chilly travel contract:

  • Airbnb. Airbnb is a familiar platform for most travelers, nurse or not. Its easy-to-use interface makes booking monthly rentals simple, and nurses may be able to find more unique properties to try out.
  • Furnished Finder. Furnished Finder is a housing resource tailored specifically for travel nurses and people in similar professions. You can search available properties or create a single housing request to potential property.
  • Landing. Landing is a membership-based housing service that allows you to find furnished apartments with flexible leases. Users have the option of transferring to a new home if the first one isn’t the right fit.
  • RotatingRoom. RotatingRoom was designed for medical students and other health care professionals to list and rent rooms near medical facilities. 
  • Transplant Housing. Transplant Housing was created with travel nurses in mind. The site lists furnished rental properties to search, or you can place a tailored housing request.
  • Travel Nurse Housing. Travel Nurse Housing also is tailored to travel nurses who are looking for rentals. There are more than 60,000 furnished listings, spanning apartments and condos to hotels and even recreational vehicles (RVs).
  • Vrbo. Vrbo is another vacation rental site that offers a breadth of housing types for travelers. It has robust renter support and usually offers more hard-to-find property types.

As you explore new assignments, new areas, and new options for finding the right housing, you’ll quickly learn which resources are the best at meeting your specific needs. Be a friend to other nurses and pass your trusted sources along to ensure everyone can find suitable housing on assignment.

Where will your next assignment take you? During winter, chances are it’ll be to a place where demand for qualified nurses is even higher due to inclement conditions. When it comes to finding housing, you might need to think more creatively. Your Health Providers Choice recruiter can help. Contact us online or call us today at 888-299-9800.

About the Author

Rose Torrento

Rosemarie Torrento has worked in health care for more than 26 years, beginning as a registered nurse in 1988. Early in her nursing career, Torrento worked as a freelance contract nurse before accepting a position in nursing administration. During her 17-year tenure in that role, she oversaw nursing employment and travel nurse contracting at a Level 1 Trauma Hospital in Michigan. Understanding the challenges travel nurses faced, Torrento founded Health Providers Choice Inc. (HPC) in 2003. Through Torrento’s extensive experience and her role as President and CEO, HPC provides travel placement of registered nurses and allied health professionals to hospital systems nationally.