Pivot To Travel Nurse Rental Profits

Table of Contents

Pivot To Travel Nurse Rental Profits 3

Welcome 3

A Different Rental Model 3

Certification Connects You to Opportunities 4

Preparing the Property 4

Exterior 5

Don’t attract the wrong kinds of attention 5

Do attract the right kind of attention – from travel nurses 5

Safety 6

Locks 6

Alarms / Security Cameras 6

Window Bars 7

Parking 7

Outdoor Space (back yards, patios, decks) 7

Sidewalks, Stairs 8

Interior 8

Furnishings 9

Amenities 9

Utilities 10

Electricity 10

Heat 10

Water 10

WiFi 10

Laundry 11

Room Features 11

Living Room 11

Kitchen 11

Bedroom 11

Bathroom 11

Basement 11

Attic 11

Listing the Rental 12

Where to Find Travel Nurse Tenants 12

Furnished Finder 12

AirBNB 12

VRBO 12

Hospitals 12

Travel Nurse Agencies 12

Screening Travel Nurse Tenants 12

Payments 13

Check-in / Check-Out (Turnover) 13

Service Calls 13

Working with Real Estate Agents 13

Working with Investors 13

Best Practices 13

Resources 13

Task Lists 13

Shopping Lists 14

Home Security Systems 14

 

Pivot To Travel Nurse Rental Profits

Expand your property management business to serve low-hassle, cashing flowing tenants.

Welcome

If you’re reading this, you’ve joined the All-Ready Rented Track for Landlords and Property Managers, to learn how to tap into the Travel Nurse Rental market.

If you haven’t completed the course Healthy Cash Flow, please do so now. The topics we’ll be covering here are an extension of that course, and you must have a solid understanding, in order to move forward.

This Course covers the details of properly furnishing, maintaining, repairing a travel nurse rental property. It also dives deeper into tenant management – listing the unit(s), screening tenants, accepting payments, and keeping the rental(s) continuously occupied between 13-week turnovers.

If you’ve already been in the property management (or landlording) business for some time, you may not think there’s much more to learn. However, the nature of travel nursing is different from short-term rental situations or long-term tenants.

A Different Rental Model

As you already know from the Healthy Cash Flow course, traveling nurses are highly trained medical professionals with specific needs and set schedules. While they don’t require as many “extra” needs as short-term rental guests, who may expect high-end accommodations, their situation makes certain elements of their housing non-negotiable. You’ll need to:

  • Ensure the unit is the right size and is in the right location.
  • Furnish the rental properly with essential features and amenities – and without unnecessary, cumbersome extras.
  • Work around their schedule, when it comes to listing the property, then screening and placing them as new tenants.
  • Ensure that all utilities are take care of.
  • Schedule inspections and maintenance at pre-set intervals, with strict adherence to a limited timeframe (to eliminate unnecessary vacancies and make changeover smooth).
  • Budget time and money for fewer big ticket items, but more frequent small repairs.

Additionally, there can be considerably more work involved in interacting with travel nurses prior to accepting them, than there is for short-term guests, maybe even long-term tenants.

If you intend to take advantage of this profitable segment, be prepared to put in some extra work. That is the one sure way to be successful. If you don’t want to bother, it’s a great way to lose out on this business.

Certification Connects You to Opportunities

By completing this course and correctly answering a high percentage of questions in the quizzes, you will qualify for All-Ready Rented Certification. This shows investors and property owners that you are well-versed in the Travel Nurse Rental model we champion, giving them a greater sense of assurance that you can – and will – meet their property management needs for Travel Nurses.

In addition to the certification questions, we require that you sign a Statement of Commitment to deliver the level of service one would expect from an All-Ready Rented certified provider.

Once you have satisfactorily passed your certification exam, as well as signed on to your commitment, your company will be added to our Member Directory, so that investors, agents, and property owners who are in the All-Ready Rented program can contract with you for your services. Only those investors, agents, and property owners who are members of our program will have access to the Directory. You’ll know, when you work with them, that you’re all on the same page in terms of the model, the vision, and the larger mission behind renting to Travel Nurses.

Preparing the Property

Due to the nature of travel nurse rentals, ideal properties can be actually located in areas that are either borderline or not very safe. Hospitals tend to be located in or near low income areas, and since rentals are Ideally within a few minutes walk at the hospital, I can turn out that a property is located in an iffy neighborhood.

In some cases, developers are actively buying up properties in those low income areas and rehabbing them. In cities like Baltimore, certain areas which are in great proximity to me in hospitals, such as Johns Hopkins, there is extensive rehabbing going on, which is great for the city. On the other hand, because development can be your regular, there could be cases where there are a number of great properties located and then that’s a great neighborhood, and the contrast is pretty extreme.

– show pictures as illustrations

Probably the first line of remediation for this risk is the exterior of the property. As a property manager or landlord, you have to find a balance between cost and benefit. If the property was chosen well, in a neighborhood that is class B or higher, it may fit well into the overall neighborhood. On the other hand, if it is in a lower class neighborhood, such as C or below, a property which is suitable for a travel nurse professional to stay in may actually stand out among the other homes around it, potentially making it a target for burglars and thieves.

Travel nurses are well aware of the risks involved, and even just a quick look through some of the online forums or Facebook groups will show you stories about bad neighborhoods. In speaking with nurses, we also have come across many who are very concerned about the safety of the neighborhood they’ll be staying in. They’ll be living there for three months, and unfortunately it’s not uncommon for nurses to have to move, because the place that they rented turned out to be unsafe. The last thing you want to do is manage a property that has a reputation for not being safe. The whole advantage of travel nursing is that you can rent to travel nurses, who receive stipends and can pay above market rates. If you have a unit that will rent, but it won’t rent to travel nurses because they can see or find out that the property isn’t safe, then you’ve just undercut one of the big reasons to do this sort of rental.

Exterior

The exterior of the property is one of the most important elements for attracting travel nurse tenants and keeping them safe.

Don’t attract the wrong kinds of attention

It should be neat and well-maintained, consistent with the rest of the neighborhood where it’s located. If a property stands out from the rest as “higher end”, it may attract attention from burglars and other dangerous elements. Keep in mind that many nurses work nights, so they come and go at all hours. So, if a property attracts the wrong kind of attention, a nurse leaving late at night, or returning in the early morning hours (when they are tired from a long shift) may be at greater risk.

If the neighborhood is under development, you should keep pace with the appearance of other houses. Just as a better-appointed property will stand out, a less-well-kept property can attract the same type of unwanted attention, making it less safe for the occupants. Funds should be allocated for exterior improvements, if the neighborhood is under development, so that you can maintain consistency with the other buildings on the block.

Do attract the right kind of attention – from travel nurses

Another consideration is that pictures of the exterior may be one of the selling points for travel nurses seeking rentals online. Nurses base some of their considerations on the appearance of the unit, as well as the neighborhood. If the property is obviously not well-maintained, that can have an impact on occupancy. Also, if the building looks good, but the neighborhood looks rough, that can discourage tenants, as well.

Considering that travel nurses can – and do – pay above-market rents, this oversight can have a significant financial impact over the short- and long-term.

Speak with your property owner about needed improvements, and make sure they understand the importance of appropriate upkeep. If they are from the area, they may already be aware of the issues. If not, it’s critical you impress upon them the need for the right “look”. Ongoing cash flow and tenant safety may depend on it.

Safety

As we just discussed, the exterior of the rental is critical. Additionally, if the unit is located in a lower class neighborhood, you can arrange for additional safety features to offset the potential risk.

Locks

As keyless locks are becoming more and more customary, they can significantly simplify your life as a property manager. Just as many short term rental landlords do, you can rely on a keyless lock set to simplify change over. In the past, landlords would meet the nurse at the property, handover the keys, show them around, and ensure they were all settled in. At the end of their stay, the landlord would need to meet them, collect the keys, and do the final inspection.

Now, with keyless lock sets, you can simply send them the code, and then communicate with him by text or phone, If they have any questions.

Inspections will need to be done after they leave, of course, but having the right locks for the property can dramatically simplify your life as a property manager.

Alarms / Security Cameras

Alarms and security cameras may be required. In fact, even if you aren’t managing a property in high-risk area, having some sort of security system in place can be a benefit. Working off hours can in some cases make nurses more vulnerable to burglary, because they are not in the unit at the usual time, and because they are on a regular schedule, someone who is scoping out the property can tell that they will be away for 8 to 12 hours at a time, providing a bigger window for break-ins.

A ring doorbell with video that records or a similar video surveillance system can be a huge help. While there are a number of different options, make sure that the one you choose is highly rated, easy to install, and easy to maintain. We have included a list of highly rated home security systems in the Resources section for your reference.

If your property doesn’t yet have a security system installed, and you plan to do the installation between changeovers, make sure that you allow ample time for the installation. Some systems let you set them up without needing to rewire everything, while others need to have actual wires installed, which can include drilling, running wires, and doing more complicated set up. Other systems are based on wireless, Which can be easier to set up. In any case, just understand the level of work involved in order to install the system, and budget enough time to get it done. We have seen situations where a nurse was already scheduled to move into a unit, but the security system turned out to be more complicated than anticipated, which delayed move in by the nurse and complicated things considerably.

Window Bars

Some areas use window bars extensively, while in other areas they look completely out of place. The property you’re managing should not stand out as either easy pickings or a highly armored Fort Knox. If you do have window bars, make sure that they are consistent with the others in the neighborhood, so they don’t stand out, and obviously always make sure they are in good working order and for my anchored has necessary.

Parking

Nurses typically own vehicles, and they need parking that is safe, secure, and ideally private. The best case scenario is having a garage attached to the unit, but a private parking pad to the rear can be just as good. A space that is allocated to the unit should be clearly marked as reserved, so that they don’t come home late at night or early in the morning and find someone else in the parking space. Finishing up a 12 hour shift and driving through a snowstorm at 3 o’clock in the morning, only to find someone illegally parked in your space just makes things worse. While parking is not your responsibility, it is a huge plus, and it is something that nurses look for.

Again, safety comes into it, so if the parking spot is behind the house of an alley, having motion sensitive floodlights installed will be a plus, or having another way to close off access to the car, such as with a locked gate, is also beneficial.

Outdoor Space (back yards, patios, decks)

If your property has a backyard, a patio, or a deck, or a combination of all of these, ensure that the space is clean and functional. As you would with any other tenant, ensure that any furniture or features are well-maintained and not a safety hazard. In the cases of travel nurses, they will likely not be using a backyard as a garden – they won’t have any time for that, but they may wish to use the patio or deck , Especially during good weather. Ensure that all cement and asphalt are in good working condition and that any decking is fully intact and not loading. Because of the nature of their work, there’s less likelihood of large social gatherings or wild parties, but at the same time, when they do utilize outdoor space, it needs to be low maintenance, and fully functional.

Unlike with long-term tenants, who are expected to keep up the space, travel nurses are busy working, and they are only around for three months at a time, usually. Make sure that you inspect everything carefully during changeovers, And make sure that the property owner has budgeted for small repairs. As mentioned before, because travel nurses come and go so frequently and there’s generally less wear and tear on the property, you can make small fixes to keep things well-maintained, while not incurring a great deal of cost at one time. This especially holds true for backyards and patios and decks, which are higher cost items when you’re making large repairs but are pretty manageable when you’re just doing regular upkeep and maintenance.

Sidewalks, Stairs

Depending on the municipality, there are different requirements for keeping stairwell step sidewalks and stairs functional. Obviously, you don’t want to create safety hazards, especially for nurses, who may be returning home at night or leaving for the hospital in the wee hours. Making sure the exterior stairs are in good shape is critical. In terms of snow removal and weather related upkeep

The exterior upkeep issue is a hybrid between short term and long term rentals. On the one hand, nurses are renting for a shorter period of time, and they do need more maintenance than a long-term renter, however they don’t need the constant attention that an Airbnb guest would, for example. Spell out the guidelines in your lease about who is responsible for what. For example, if you are responsible for clearing snow from the exterior stairs and sidewalk, make that clear If that responsibility is on the renter, make sure they have the tools I need, such as a snow shovel or broom.

Interior

Just as the exterior is a big selling point for travel nurses when they’re looking for a rental, the interior plays an important role as well. Renting to travel nurses is both like other rentals, and neither. On the one hand, you do need to provide all of the basics for them to be comfortable and safe for the duration of their stay. However, the high end touches that you find from short term rentals, are absolutely not necessary. In some cases, travel nurses have been known to rent empty apartments they just had utilities turned on, and they simply slept on an inflatable air mattress and lived out of their suitcases. Obviously, if you want to incur the expense of appointing the unit for high-end rentals, you’re free to do so. However, keep in mind that the people you’re renting to are working constantly, so there’s not a lot of time energy left over for them to luxuriate in posh surroundings.

Some property owners attempted to give there unit all the fine features of home. However, every dollar that spent for high-end items comes out of the overall margin, and eventually those things will need to be replaced. We highly recommend sticking with a very basic approach. It may seem like you need to furnish the place with distinctive touches, however, if you have a property that’s in a great location, it has all the features necessary, and there is high demand for housing in that area, those are absolutely not necessary.

Furnishings

In terms of furnishings, each room should have the basics. We have included lists of furnishings for each room and the section below. We also have extended details in the Resources section, detailing what is needed for bare minimum, medium, or elaborate configurations. As you can see, it is possible to furnish a unit adequately without spending a fortune.

If you’re managing a property for an owner who wants to go high end, make sure that they understand why it is that they want to do it. The fact of the matter is, if they have a property in a class B neighborhood in a city with many rental units available, and they are going to high end to attract higher rents, they may find it’s challenging, because there will be plenty of other units available for people to choose from that have everything they need but our lower cost.

For example, if a rental is located in the classy neighborhood, near only one Hospital, and in an area that already has 75 available rentals for $200-$400 less than their asking, they may find it difficult to keep it occupied, because nurses are looking for convenience as well as a good price, versus luxury. This is absolutely a critical consideration for renting to travel nurses. If you’re renting to doctors, it’s one thing, but nurses will generally choose a lower rent over higher and finishes, so furnish accordingly.

If, after several rotations with different travel nurses, a higher end finish is desired, then by all means, Move forward with that. But we recommend starting out with very basic configuration with the bare minimum that is easy to outfit, easy to maintain, and easy to replace. That way, a lot of money doesn’t get spent upfront for no good reason.

When looking for furniture, it’s best to stick with sturdy, easy to clean, Kloth upholstery, without features that are easy to damage, such as decorative knobs

Amenities

In terms of amenities the key element is utility. You do not need to provide a hot tub. You do not need to provide cable television. You do not need to have high end everything, because it’s not needed. Focus specifically on providing exactly what is needed with the most utility and ease-of-use possible.

Again, let’s think about what a travel nurse’s life is like. They return from the hospital after a 12 hour shift, hungry and tired. They need an easy way to make a good meal, eat it comfortably, and then clean up easily. They need easy ways to keep their living space clean and orderly and organize so that they can get up the next day shower dress and head back to work. Everything that you do to make their life easier is going to make your rental more attractive to them. That means, having a full kitchen with the proper dishes and tableware, having a microwave, dishwasher, cleaning supplies, a sturdy, spacious refrigerator, either with an icemaker or with ice trays in the freezer, a stove that is fully functional, and oven, and plenty of counterspace. For the bathroom, they need a shower and a bathtub, possibly a combination, as well as I think with a vanity are plenty of other counter space. In terms of appliances, they will need smart TVs, that they can connect to with their computer, as well as set ups that let them take care of business, for example a desk with a lamp where they can work.

Additional amenities worth mentioning are the ones outside the unit itself. Any travel nurses do you travel in order to explore other parts of the country, see the sights, taking the attractions, and experience new things and new places. If you were managing a property near attractions, make sure you provide guides and suggestions for the tenants, so they can quickly and easily find something of interest to them. Nearby restaurants, shopping, pharmacies, grocery stores, and other every day needs is also important.

Utilities

Utilities for travel nurses are not very different from other shortterm rental utilities. Everything must be included. That is the expectation. This is absolutely non-negotiable. Of course, you can try to make the nurses pay for utilities, however chances are that’s going to make the unit harder to rent.

Electricity

Heat

Water

WiFi

One element that is absolutely critical is Wi-Fi. You must absolutely positively provide Wi-Fi for every single one of your travelers tenants. They may have homework they need to do, or they need to keep in touch with their employer, or they need to be lining up their next job or they need to be connected with their family. All in all, utilities for a travel. Nurse will tend to be less expensive than for short term rental guests. They are working a lot, and when they are in the unit, they are not doing much other than sleeping, eating, or relaxing with one of their favorite shows. Unlike short term rental guests who are often in a unit to experience as much as possible in a relatively short time, the travel nurse lifestyle doesn’t allow for a whole lot of leisure.

Laundry

In addition to a full kitchen and private bath, they will also need access to laundry. Keeping their space and clothes clean is important, So what do you have on site laundry or they have access to a nearby laundromat, make sure they have what they need.

Room Features

Living Room

Kitchen

Bedroom

Bathroom

Basement

Attic

 

 

Listing the Rental

The course Rent It, Already is Included in the Landlord / Property Management Track. This course covers the particulars of listing a travel nurse rental property.

Listing units for travel nurses is different from others, because they are looking for specific criteria which differ from other types of rentals. In particular, they look for:

  • Location of the property – proximity to hospitals
  • Safety – they look at the neighborhood where it’s located
  • Furnishings and amenities – not fancy, but clean and comfortable
  • Utilities – the rental should include all.
  • Attractions and conveniences – How close are the grocery stores and restaurants? Is there weekend entertainment nearby?

If you haven’t done so yet, take some time to work through that short course and familiarize yourself with the principles there. Then come back to this course to proceed.

Where to Find Travel Nurse Tenants

Furnished Finder

 

AirBNB

 

VRBO

 

Hospitals

 

Travel Nurse Agencies

 

Screening Travel Nurse Tenants

 

Payments

 

Check-in / Check-Out (Turnover)

 

Service Calls

Working with Real Estate Agents

 

Working with Investors

 

 

Best Practices

 

Resources

 

Task Lists

 

 

Shopping Lists

 

Home Security Systems

List of top-rated systems