Home Away From Home
by McGill News
Five years ago Nadege Conger, MBA'90, and her husband, former McGill management professor Jay Conger, began travelling regularly to London, England, from their home near Los Angeles. Jay had joint appointments at the University of Southern California and the London Business School, and the Congers soon discovered that finding temporary living quarters in Britain was no easy task.
"It's very hard to plan ahead over there," says Nadege. "A lot of places only become available at the last minute."
She thought somebody should do something about helping academics track down places to stay when they journey abroad for sabbaticals or other purposes. In the end, she decided to tackle the job herself. Conger now oversees Sabbaticalhomes.com, a website that helps professors and other university staffers find, rent or swap homes away from home. The site has offered lodgings in just about every place imaginable, from a castle in Tuscany to a remote beach house in the wilds of New Zealand.
"Some of the places listed sound incredible. I do a lot of daydreaming about going to them myself," Conger chuckles.
It's proven to be an ideal job for Conger, the mother of two youngsters and a woman who still travels a fair bit. "The hours are very flexible and I can run it out of anywhere. I've spent many hours working on the site in Internet cafés around the world."
Conger charges users of her site a US $25 set-up fee, and a further $30 to $70 when they succeed in finding a place to stay or in locating tenants. Fees are currently being waived for anyone offering a home to victims of Hurricane Katrina.
To learn more, visit Sabbaticalhomes.com or contact Conger at email@example.com.