How Traveling Nurses Can Be a Lifeline to Landlords

With millions out of work, landlords and rental property owners across the country have been desperate for tenants – and rent. Nearly 60% of landlords said their tenants are unable to pay because of the coronavirus, and 80% said they’re willing to work with these renters, according to an American Apartment Owners Association (AAOA) survey. 

Landlords in Crisis

According to a survey taken in April of more than 3,000 individual landlords and over 7,000 tenants, more than half (54%) of the renters said they had already lost their jobs due to the coronavirus outbreak, and of those, about a third said that if they couldn’t afford to, they would simply stop paying rent. Some said they would look to family and friends for help, while others said they didn’t know what they would do.

Many rental property owners have lost revenue since the start of the pandemic. Most small landlords do not have access to credit to cover their costs from lost rent payments. More than half (58%) said they did not have access to any lines of credit that might help them in an emergency.

Travel in Trouble

Travel has ground to a halt across the country, leaving many individuals without a source of income. Many schools are going online for the fall semester, so there is a substantial decrease in the number of students and interns looking for temporary housing. 

The story is similar throughout the travel industry. Studies show that around 74% of hotel rooms are currently empty. Airbnb’s 2020 revenue is forecast to be less than half of what the startup pulled in last year. As a result, the company recently announced that it’s cutting 1,900 of its employees, or about 25% of its workforce, a major blow to the tech industry and the company’s 70,000 hosts all over the U.S.

Traveling Nurses to the Rescue

As it turns out, travel nurses may be the answer to their prayers. These providers travel all over to temporarily assist healthcare facilities. Unlike some other professionals, nurses still need to travel for work, despite the crisis that’s going on around them.

Janet Marston Harris, who owns the McNeal House, an Airbnb in Pasadena, had to adjust her business model after the pandemic. After some of her guests cancelled their reservations, she didn’t know if she had enough money to keep the lights on.

That’s when she decided to list her property on Furnished Finder, a website that helps employees find temporary housing. Soon, her four-bedroom home was full of traveling nurses working in the area.

Contracts for travel nurses tend to last about 13 weeks, which is perfect for short-term rental property owners. Providers often look for fully furnished rooms and homes online when preparing for their assignments.

“I do whatever I can to make it nice for them,” Harris said. “They come here to work, and they don’t want to go out and buy all of that stuff.”

For Angie Schnieder, a travel nurse from Louisville, KY, Harris’s home was just what she was looking for. “This is my second assignment,” she says, “I’ve been a nurse for almost 12 years. My husband (Myron) recently took an early retirement so that he could travel with me. So far, it’s been great.”

Travel nurses tend to make more than traditional RNs. They also get the chance to travel to new locations and expand their knowledge of the healthcare industry. The American Nurses Association predicts that the industry will create 1.1 million new travel nursing jobs by 2022.

Even as other travelers stay home, these providers continue to roll up their sleeves and head straight for the front lines. If you’re thinking about becoming a travel nurse, you can use this experience to help out landlords and property owners in need along your way.

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