In a perfect world you’d move seamlessly from one long-term property to the next. But the real world isn’t like that. Sometimes job opportunities arise with little warning, or you simply get an urgent case of wanderlust. Whatever the reason, you can’t always secure a lease or mortgage before moving. That’s when temporary housing can come in handy. But is it right for you?
What is Temporary Housing?
Temporary housing is any accommodation that you don’t intend to live in on a long-term basis. This could be an on-site caravan or cabin in a caravan park, a room in a hotel or motel, or a serviced apartment.
Temporary housing is professionally managed and available on a short-term lease, often day-to-day, week-to-week, or month-to-month. These options are fully furnished with everything from beds to TV sets, so you won’t need to spend any money setting them up. Larger properties often have in-room laundry facilities and kitchenettes or full-sized kitchens. The utilities will be connected, so you can start using those appliances the moment you arrive.
Some temporary housing is pet-friendly, but you should check beforehand to see whether you’ll need to kennel your animals. Additional cleaning fees for pets often apply, which may add a significant amount to your bill. Depending on the temporary housing you choose, it may come with additional perks such as housekeeping.
When Should You Use Temporary Housing?
Temporary housing is a great option if you need somewhere to stay until you find a more permanent residence. Temporary housing not only is useful until you find a home to buy or rent but also gives you the time you need to assess where you’d like to live in a town or city.
It's a good choice if you don’t know anyone in the area that you’re moving to, or if you need more space and privacy than moving in with friends or family members would provide.
What Does it Cost?
The cost of temporary housing can vary significantly depending on the style of the accommodation, its size, and the location. For example, you can typically expect to pay more for a two-bedroom hotel room than a cabin in a caravan park. Inner-city temporary accommodation also typically costs more than rooms in regional centers and the suburbs. The level of furnishings and additional services will also impact the price.
As a guide, caravan parks will likely be your cheapest option. Their onsite caravans tend to be the most inexpensive, although they can be cramped for families. Onsite cabins are typically larger, with better facilities, although they’re also more expensive. Depending on where the caravan park is located, you can generally stay for less than $100 a night.
Hotels and motels are typically more expensive than caravan parks, but the room rates include housekeeping services, and the facilities are usually a bit better. Prices vary significantly depending on whether you choose a two-star or five-star establishment, but you could pay anywhere from $50 to $500 a night. Prices may be reduced for longer stays.
For a bit more space and a more permanent set-up, try a serviced apartment. These are ideal for families, as they typically have at least two bedrooms, separate living spaces, and kitchen and laundry facilities. You can expect to find a serviced apartment for somewhere between $75 and $300 a night, much less than a comparable hotel room. The nightly rate is typically reduced the longer you stay. Housekeeping may be available, but it will usually cost extra.
How Do You Find Temporary Housing?
It’s best to organise temporary housing before you arrive in your new city, especially if you’re travelling during school holidays or major events. An online search is the best way to browse and book your temporary accommodation.
Caravan Parks Online is a great resource if you think you’ll stay in a caravan park. Websites like Wotif and Need It Now specialise in motels and hotels. You can find serviced apartments via Roomorama, Short Term Accommodation, and Corporate Keys Australia. All these sites allow you to assess the photos and description of the temporary housing you’re interested in and book. Most have phone numbers for you to call if you have any questions about the property.
Don’t Forget About Storage
While you’re staying in your fully furnished temporary housing, there’ll be no space for your own stuff. So you’ll need to organise storage until you find more permanent accommodation. You could research independent storage companies in your new area or investigate the options offered by your removalists. Businesses like Chess Moving offer short-, medium-, and long-term storage facilities in locations around Australia and the rest of the world. Using the services of your removalists can be much simpler than hiring separate firms since it saves you the time of shopping around.
Now that you know more about temporary housing, do you think it’s right for you?