Carolina’s business was born out of her personal experience of coming to the US to study English from Brazil. She used a travel agency in Brazil to help her find accommodations in San Diego, but found that they lacked the personal touch a local agency could offer. She realized that there were many other international students who come to the US and require these kinds of temporary housing services, and rather than returning to Brazil, Carolina decided to stay in San Diego to help other visiting students get settled in this country.
She launched a full-service temporary housing service company with a passion to connect international students and executives with training opportunities in the US. Her company helps students from all over the world including Brazil, China, Japan, Korea and Spain. It not only provides furnished accommodations, but has developed partnership with local universities to directly offer English classes and corporate executive training courses.
Priding herself on creating a personalized experience, Carolina makes an effort to get to know her clients and does whatever she can to meet their needs. She personally inspects every home that she places students in and refuses to place anyone in a home that she personally would not sleep in.
“This is really a 24-7 job,” said Carolina. “The international students I work with sometimes call me at midnight asking for my help.”
The biggest challenge that Carolina faces is the seasonal nature of her business. Cash flow is slow during low seasons, though the workload does not decrease. She will use her $10,000 Kiva loan to stabilize her cash flow, as well as hire two part-time employees to assist her in operations.
In the future, Carolina hopes to expand her business to service other college towns such as Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Berkeley, helping more international students discover a warm welcome to the United States.