Travel nurses are essential to keeping our healthcare system functioning, and there is an increased demand for them each year for various reasons (as we’ll discuss below). This presents a great opportunity for property owners to rent their space to traveling nurses who need short-term housing accommodations.
This Ultimate Guide to Renting to Traveling Nurses highlights why it’s a great option for property owners, how to find potential tenants, how to prepare a rental unit and common FAQs about renting to traveling nurses.
Why Renting to Traveling Nurses is so Lucrative
You have options if you have extra space you’d like to rent for profit. These include long-term rentals, vacation rentals, and short-term rentals. Renting to a travel nurse is considered “short-term” since you will likely be renting on a month-to-month basis.
So why choose to rent short-term to a travel nurse or other healthcare professional on a contract? Well, it truly is the best of both worlds in the rental market. Here’s why:
- For long-term rentals, you typically have a tenant committed to paying rent for at least a year. However, these tenants tend to get complacent over time, and your home will likely need some major repairs and deep cleaning between each tenant.
- On the other hand, vacation rentals offer good income potential and less wear on a property but require more management upkeep due to quick turnover.
With this in mind, here are the big advantages of renting to travel nurses:
- Less turnover than vacation rentals to reduce the need for continual “hustle,” yet a short enough time that you still have the opportunity to stay on top of any upkeep.
- You are tapping into a community of trustworthy, vetted professionals who will treat your property respectfully.
- Like a vacation rental, you can rent one room or space in your home if you’re open to sharing your spaces.
- You can typically charge higher rates than long-term rentals, especially since you’ll be offering a furnished property and all utilities included (ideally).
Overall, renting to a travel nurse is a low-risk opportunity to make extra property income. Plus, the growing demand for travel nurses nationwide (as baby boomers retire from nursing and need more care themselves) will increase your odds of having a fully booked property each month. even during the holidays.
Platforms You Can List Your Property With
Now that you know exactly why you should rent to a travel nurse, how do you find a nurse traveling to your area? You have a few options.
- Most rental sites like Airbnb and VRBO offer short-term rentals. You can sign up for a free account and post your listing with all the necessary details, photos, and availability. It’s important to know that these platforms will charge a percentage of each booking that is made this way. Plus, they cater to vacation rentals more than short-term monthly rentals.
- You can contact travel nurse agencies in your area, talk to your local hospital, or visit online forums/message boards to find out if any nurses are looking for a rental. This can be time-consuming, and it is hard to keep up sustainably as a business model.
- Your final and best option is listing your property on a website catered specifically to traveling nurses and other healthcare professionals, like Transplant Housing. For a small annual fee, you can list your property as a vetted option for nurses to stay during their work contracts. It’s definitely the easiest and most affordable option for sustainably renting to this group.
You can get started today by listing your property here.
How to Price Your Listing
Once you’ve gathered all of the photos and details, you need to put together a stellar listing; one of your biggest questions is probably about pricing. How do you determine a fair price?
- The general rule of thumb is to charge a higher rate than long-term rentals and lower than vacation rentals. Be sure to include all utilities, WiFi, and other amenities in your rental fees.
- Take a look at what other rentals in your area are offering and price accordingly (factoring in how amenities and other additions compare to yours)
- Research how much a travel nurse in your area makes per diem for their living costs (you can look it up by the state here). You can find this info to help you set a fair cost. With rising housing costs, it’s important to remember that nurses are on a fixed stipend amount.
What Travel Nurses Are Looking For
As you create your listing, it’s important to remember what travel nurses are looking for.
The most desirable rental properties will include:
- Fully furnished bedrooms and bathrooms
- Laundry access (in the unit is best!)
- Utilities included (WiFi, electricity, water, etc.)
- Local conveniences such as grocery stores, pharmacies, and restaurants
- Privacy (including soundproofing if possible)
- Proximity to work
- Access to amenities (pool, gym, etc.)
- Allowing pets (if desirable)
How to Catch People’s Attention
With all its perks, the short-term rental market for travel nurses is growing rapidly. So how do you stand out in a sea of rental listings? Keep the list of desirable amenities discussed above. Plus, keep these in mind:
- Reviews: Ask your past tenants for reviews to help build trust.
- Updates: Keep your listing as up-to-date as possible, particularly the dates that it is available.
- Quick responses: Travel nurses are often looking for housing very last minute (they may even already be on site. The quicker you respond, the more likely they will rent your place.
Need more tips? See our full article on how to make your listing stand out.
How to Prepare Your Rental for a Travel Nurse
Are you ready to host your first travel nurse? Here’s a full checklist of what you need to prepare your property for their arrival.
- Paperwork: Have all the necessary paperwork filled out and ready to go, including your rental agreement.
- Clean: Be sure to give the entire property a thorough deep cleaning before they arrive.
- Furnish: Provide all necessary furnishings in each bedroom and common area.
- Linens & towels: Supply clean linens, bedding, and towels. (Many travel nurses bring their own bedding so you can double-check with them before arrival what they actually need.)
- Kitchen: Stock the kitchen with basic cooking items such as utensils, pots/pans, etc. You can decide if you want to include extras like a microwave, instant pot, coffee pot, or blender.
- WiFi: Ensure your internet is up and running and the password is easily accessible.
- Basic items: Consider providing toilet paper, soap, shampoo, and other basic items that can make their stay more comfortable- at least to get them started.
- Security: Update any security camera systems, keys, and codes they need access to.
- Maintenance: Run through all of your systems (electricity, plumbing, heating/cooling, dishwasher, washer/dryer, etc.) and check that they are all in working order.
- Extras: Include any bonus items to help your tenants enjoy their stay. This can include items that boost the coziness factor, blackout curtains for night nurses that sleep during the day, local guides to help them explore the area, etc.
Renting to Travel Nurses: FAQs
Can you manage travel nurse rentals from afar?
Yes, you can manage travel nurse rentals from afar with the help of a rental management company. This will help ensure that all paperwork is taken care of and your property remains in good condition between tenants.
Do travel nurses provide references?
Yes, they can provide references from previous landlords or housing providers. It’s best to ask for a reference before the tenant moves in so that you can verify their ability to pay rent on time and take care of the property.
Are travel nurses responsible for damages?
Yes, travel nurses are typically held responsible for any damages they cause to the rental unit. Be sure to have a clear understanding with your tenant about what is expected in terms of damage or maintenance before they move in. Just like a long-term rental, a security deposit is often collected for this reason.
Do I need special insurance for my travel nurse rental?
Yes, getting the right insurance to cover your property while it’s rented out on a short-term basis is important. Contact your insurance provider to ensure you have the right coverage and limits in place.
Can I charge a premium for my rental?
Yes, you can definitely set a premium rate for your rental since it is likely in high demand from traveling nurses. Be aware of local laws and regulations on fair housing and tenant rights.
Are there any other advantages to renting to travel nurses?
Yes, there are many advantages to renting to travel nurses! They often stay for a few months at a time, making them more reliable than traditional short-term renters. And since they move around so much, you’ll likely find new tenants quickly when their stay is up.
How often do travel nurses typically stay in one place?
Most travel nurse contracts are 13 weeks, potentially extending an additional 13 weeks (but no more than that).
How to avoid travel nurse rental scams?
See our full resource on how to avoid scams.
What else do I need to know when renting to travel nurses?
Be clear with your tenants about expectations- payment schedule, damages, cleaning requirements, etc. Proper communication will help ensure a successful relationship between you and the travel nurse.
Remember, Travel Nurse Demand Will Only Grow!
Travel nursing continues to grow in popularity due to the increased demand for nurses and other healthcare professionals as many nurses from the baby boomer generation get ready to retire in the next few years.
By offering a safe, clean, and comfortable rental to travel nurses, you can take advantage of this growing trend and benefit from having reliable tenants that come and go on your terms.
We hope this guide has provided you with all the information you need to get started with renting to travel nurses. With a few extra preparations, you can make the rental experience enjoyable for you and your tenants! Good luck!