Eight Days on the Floor finding housing as a travel nurse

By Andrew Ferguson

February 6, 2019



Eight Days on the Floor

As a travel nurse family that has been doing their own housing for the last two years, we’ve seen our share of questionable options when it comes to where to lay our heads.

The Bad

It’s actually pretty amazing what some people will try to pass off as livable. My wife once flushed a commode at an apartment unit we were looking at, and flooded half the apartment. Luckily the dead cockroaches on the kitchen floor were unaffected by the disturbance. I picked us out a place that was built above a horse barn, in the desert, in the middle of summer. It had a swamp cooler for temperature control, but unfortunately, it only worked half the time, and at half power. You can imagine how popular I was with my family during that month. But hey, we saved a little money.

The Good

Just as amazing as some of the bad finds, are the good ones. I have to say, that all things considered, we (my wife) have found some really nice places to stay. We’ve even had people drop their price as much as $800 a month, when we’ve done thirteen weeks or more. With the help of resources like The Gypsy Nurse, Airbnb, and Travelers Haven, we’re getting better at doing our own housing. But what do you do when there’s none to be had?

No Luck

My wife’s current assignment is in the town where she grew up. She’s working at a heart hospital, and she loves her job and she works with some very competent doctors, and some excellent, and truly caring nurses. She is learning a lot, and is already considered one of the go to nurses on the unit. She has family, and friends in town, and has enjoyed her time visiting with them. The only thing is, we can’t find a place to live.

Her family has been very accommodating, but they just don’t have the room for all three of us. Her mother lives in a retirement community that frowns on visitors that don’t leave for months, and we certainly don’t want to cause her any problems there. Some of her friends would probably let us stay, but we hate to put anybody out, especially when we are prepared to find our own place. There’s just no places to be found.

We aren’t real far away from our tax home in Nashville, so that has made things easier. But we’re still far enough away that we need a place in the town where she’s working. We’ve checked all the usual resources, and have looked at the extended stays in town. There’s nothing available for short term renting, other than the extended stays that are only available for a week or less at a time. It’s a bad situation, but if it had to happen somewhere, better here than somewhere a thousand miles away from home where we don’t know anyone.

Making the Best of It

Because of the circumstances of this assignment choice, we didn’t do our due diligence in looking for a place to stay before accepting this job. Keep that in mind Gypsy community. We’ve always been able to find a place to stay everywhere she’s worked, but there’s always a first time. As of this writing, I’m spending my eighth night sleeping on the floor. Truthfully though, it’s all worth it. It’s all about the adventure, and in this case, the lessons learned. And my wife and son aren’t sleeping on the floor…yet.

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