Post-Disaster Temporary Housing – How to Approach Finding New Accommodations

Whether you experience a fire or a natural disaster, there may come a time when you urgently need to find alternative accommodations because your home has become uninhabitable. Unfortunately, it can be challenging to find the right temporary housing at an affordable cost after an emergency, so it may be necessary to enlist the help of the following resources:

  • State and/or federal programs
  • Disaster relief NGOs
  • Insurance coverage

Here’s what you need to know about the above options.

State and Federal Programs

Some disasters – such as hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes or other natural events – may be widespread enough to require governmental intervention. Your state’s emergency management agency might intervene, but in cases of widespread damage, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) may step in to assist.

In cases where thousands of people have become suddenly displaced, these agencies may provide shelter, but only for the short term, meaning only for a few days or weeks. Depending upon your circumstances or the extent of the damage, governmental agencies might provide funds that help to cover the cost of restoring your home or finding alternative lodgings.

Disaster Relief NGOs

When a major disaster strikes, sometimes local or national relief organizations provide essential services to the affected population. These organizations, called non-governmental organizations or NGOs, include the American Red Cross and Habitat for Humanity, among others. They help survivors locate transitional housing and provide stores of food, clothing, and medical supplies when necessary. However, in the event of a more localized issue, such as a fire that only affects your home, you may find that charitable resources are more limited.

Insurance Coverage

If you have homeowner’s or renter’s insurance that offers fire or flood coverage, you may be entitled to long-term temporary housing while damages are repaired. This is often under the “loss of use” provision, and – depending upon the specific policy – might cover the bulk of your living expenses if your home has been deemed uninhabitable. There are three major factors to take into account with of loss of use coverage:

  • Reimbursement will only cover up to the equivalent of what you would typically spend living in your home.
  • Your coverage is for a finite length of time, so it might expire before you can move back into your home.
  • Your rental coverage will likely be for a living space of equivalent size.

Temporary Furnished Housing Post-Disaster

If you have insurance coverage that provides reimbursement for temporary rental housing, you may want to consider temporary furnished housing for yourself and your family in the event of a disaster. Also called corporate housing, temporary furnished housing is an excellent, budget-friendly resource for people who have been displaced for an undetermined length of time. Not only is corporate housing significantly less expensive than hotel accommodations, corporate housing provides all of the supplies and necessities of a fully functional home – necessities people who’ve endured a disaster probably won’t have.

Hopefully, you won’t have to endure a disaster that forces you out of your home, but furnished corporate housing might be one of your best options if you find yourself needing accommodations.

4 Common Myths About Corporate Housing

Most people aren’t familiar with corporate housing — also commonly called temporary furnished housing or short-term housing — but it’s a money-saving solution for people seeking affordable furnished accommodations for periods of one month or longer. However, there are still numerous misconceptions about temporary housing circulating throughout the internet. Here are a few of the most widely – yet erroneously – believed myths about furnished housing.

  1. Corporate housing is only for people relocating for business purposes. While temporary housing is also frequently called “corporate housing,” it isn’t strictly for corporate-affiliated business professionals. Anyone who needs monthly furnished accommodations can lease temporary housing for themselves and their families. If you are renovating your home or going on an extended vacation, temporary housing is a great option. Also, you might consider temporary housing if you’re a student or if you’re a part of a traveling acting company. You don’t really need a specific reason to choose temporary housing – simply needing a place to stay for a month or more is enough!

  2. Corporate housing is only for the long-term. Staying in a hotel for weeks or months at a time is not only costly, but inconvenient for people with children, since most major hotels are located in districts that aren’t particularly family-friendly. Corporate housing fills the gap between hotel/homestay options and multi-year apartment leases by offering lodging in community-oriented neighborhoods at a lower rate. This means that corporate housing is ideal for guests who need accommodations for one or two months, or even a year or more. In fact, some corporate housing is offered on a weekly or even nightly basis.

  3. Corporate housing doesn’t provide common household supplies. Corporate housing isn’t just an apartment with furniture – it’s a fully functioning home complete with every basic amenity needed to live comfortably. Everything is provided, including bed linens, bath towels, fully stocked kitchen with dishes and cooking supplies, entertainment center, internet connectivity, and even a washer/dryer. All you need are your clothes!

  4. Corporate housing is more expensive than hotels. A month-long stay in a corporate housing unit is equal to a two-week stay in a hotel room in terms of cost. Moreover, corporate housing units are far more spacious and comfortable than hotel rooms because they are fully equipped with functioning kitchens and all of the comforts of a home environment. There are also no add-on costs typically associated with hotel rooms, like fees for additional guests, mini-bar use or Wi-Fi.

Whether you’re traveling for business or pleasure, or if you just need lodging in your own city, corporate housing is a fantastic option for short-term and long-term accommodations. For more information about corporate housing in cities throughout the U.S., please visit the SoBENY home page.

Short-Term Corporate Housing for Travel Nurses and Healthcare Workers

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, travel nurses and healthcare workers made up 6 percent of U.S. corporate housing occupancies. The need for travel nurses is expected to increase as rural community populations decrease, causing the number of hospitals and healthcare facilities in remote regions to diminish even as communities cope with the new health threat of the novel coronavirus. Mobile healthcare workers are essential to the wellbeing and quality of life in many rural communities, and they need flexible housing options that allow them to access these underserved populations easily.

What Is a Travel Nurse?

Travel nurses are healthcare providers who deliver their services to far-flung hospitals and medical facilities that require short-term staff. It is an attractive option for medical professionals who enjoy travel and who want to provide care to regions with deficiencies in healthcare resources.

Housing for travel nurses can vary quite a bit, and accommodations largely depend upon the resources provided by the agency through which they find assignments, particularly if they are new to the profession and aren’t experienced in the administrative aspects of the field. Some agencies work with excellent corporate housing providers, while others offer accommodations that are less-than-ideal.

However, some very good agencies provide a certain amount to travel nurses and allow them to find their accommodations. This housing may be a hotel for very short-term stays, or – for stays of 30 days or longer – traditional apartments or furnished corporate housing.

From a budgetary perspective, furnished corporate housing may be the best option, as it includes all of the amenities necessary to ensure a comfortable stay, including full kitchens, entertainment centers, comfortable furnishings, laundry rooms (some units offer a washer/dryer), and even gym facilities. Comparable features in a hotel are typically found at a far higher price point.

If you’re a travel nurse or mobile healthcare worker and seeking furnished corporate housing, here are a few things to consider when looking for monthly rentals:

  • Convenient location. The location must be a primary consideration when selecting a monthly furnished rental if you want to maximize efficiency. While monthly furnished housing is, on the whole, more affordable than a hotel room, if it requires a lengthy commute to work or if it isn’t near essential resources like grocery stores, you could wind up spending far more time and money that what is optimal.

  • Guest services. A service-focused corporate housing provider is essential. At SoBeNY, we offer guests in-depth knowledge of the cities and neighborhoods of all of our monthly rentals and are more than happy to help guests navigate a new city.

  • Monthly rental amenities. It’s important to find a corporate rental with amenities that fit your lifestyle and preferences. Not only should the rental feature all of the amenities you need to live comfortably, but it should also have the security and community resources to accommodate your needs. If you’re moving with your children, for example, your monthly rental should be in a community that is family-friendly and convenient to attractions and services like schools and play areas.

If you’re a travel nurse and need a reliable, affordable, and high-quality corporate housing option, you should look at your contract stipulations and see how you can ensure the best resources for your needs and budget. Selecting your monthly rentals could be an excellent money-saving solution.

Looking for an Extended Home Away from Home? Benefits of Month-to-Month Corporate Housing

While corporate housing is a widely used resource for corporations that transfer employees to different cities, it’s not nearly as popular with people seeking temporary housing for leisure trips or even as temporary accommodations during extensive home renovations. However, it’s a fantastic option for a diverse population of guests. Here are a few of the benefits of month-to-month corporate housing.

Month-to-Month Corporate Housing is Move-In Ready

Unlike traditional apartments that have to be furnished by the renter, or even hotel rooms that don’t offer all of the comforts and conveniences of a home, monthly corporate housing comes with all of the amenities you need to enjoy a relaxed, homey stay. Not only are corporate apartments furnished, but they also offer all of the supplies guests need for their comfort. These include kitchen appliances, utensils, and cookware, bed linens, laundry rooms, and an assortment of sundries. Monthly rentals are also highly secure and feature concierge service and even gyms.

Month-to-Month Corporate Housing Offers Flexible Leasing

Monthly corporate housing is a far more affordable option than comparably equipped hotels. While it is possible to stay in a hotel for months at a time, the costs are generally inflexible; hotels don’t usually offer discounts for longer stays. Moreover, guests can have their families or friends stay with them for a portion of the stay without paying additional fees.

Month-to-Month Corporate Housing Providers Connect Renters with the Perfect Accommodations Easily

Corporate housing providers can take the burden of finding the best rental off of your shoulders. SoBeNY offers in-depth knowledge of the cities where monthly corporate rentals are provided, providing guests with the perfect locations for their needs and lifestyle. Guests who need accommodations in a family-friendly neighborhood near a particular school district, or who want a rental in proximity to their job site can allow the SoBeNY representatives to connect them with the best options.

Month-to-Month Corporate Housing is Designed for a Variety of Living Situations

Corporate guests needing additional space for roommates can find it easily with furnished corporate housing. With large floor plans that are often more than twice the square footage of standard hotel rooms, corporate housing can provide comfortable accommodations for multiple guests while allowing them their privacy and space.

SoBeNY specializes in providing top-notch monthly corporate housing for a diverse population of guests. Whether you’re relocating with your family or simply need an apartment for yourself, SoBeNY can find you a rental that feels just like home.