What is house sitting? A brief overview (with discount codes!)

    We’ve been full time house and pet sitters since the beginning of 2018, and sometimes when we explain our occupation to people, we’re met with furrowed brows and head tilts. For those that have never heard of the idea it sounds too good to be true, and we’ve been living this lifestyle for so long that we sometimes forget that people might not understand what it means to be a house and pet sitter!

    House sitting is an exchange between two parties, where a house sitter looks after a home while the owner is away. More often than not there are pets to take care of too, so the sitter will be pet sitting as well as house sitting, but we tend to use the term house sitting as an umbrella term for all of these responsibilities.

    There are many ways to arrange a house sit; via social media, through word of mouth, for friends and family, but the most common way to find a house sit or house sitter is by using a dedicated house sitting website. Each site differs in its operation but the concept is the same – a mutually beneficial agreement between the sitter and owner.

    The website that began our house sitting journey is Trusted Housesitters, where sitters take care of homes and pets in exchange for free accommodation and the opportunity to travel all over the world via house sitting. Home owners upload a listing, providing details about the responsibilities that are involved in taking care of their home and pets, then sitters can apply for it like a job, writing an application as well as filling in a profile for the home owner to read. Home owners can also invite sitters by searching through the profiles on the site. It can be difficult for people who don’t know about housesitting to wrap their heads around the concept that no money changes hands. However, the concept works and we’ve had many wonderful experiences though Trusted Housesitters.

    Other petsitting sites, such as Rover, are more conventional in their approach. Pet owners search through profiles on the website to find a sitter and contact them directly, paying a nightly fee for the sitter to provide pet care. There are no house sit listings, just a simple profile for the pet owner to complete, though annoyingly it isn’t compulsory to fill in all the details. It’s this fact that makes it essential for sitters to ensure they ask questions to ensure they have all the information they’ll need while on the sit. The set up of Rover is completely different to Trusted Housesitters and it’s less about the opportunity for sitters to ‘live like a local’ all over the world, and more about pet owners finding regular sitters for their pets as sitters aren’t able to apply for jobs. It’s also worth mentioning that Rover take a 15% cut of sitters earnings, so a heads up for sitters: Adjust your rates accordingly.

    We’ve also had experience with Gudog though, again, this site is generally used by people looking for regular sitters or dog walkers. We enjoy travelling all over the U.K. and beyond with our house sitting adventures, so we can’t always guarantee we can be regular sitters, though this approach might suit people with a home base of their own. From time to time it’s nice to top up the travel fund with these paid sits, and all of our Rover and Gudog gigs to date have been great!

    We’ve spent so many years building up our house sitting and pet care experience, that we now also have our own house sitting website to promote our services. This is useful when meeting new pet owners as we can guide them to our site to book in a new house sit, without paying commission to other companies. You can find more information about the services we provide, as well as more information about us, by visiting our website Chris And Suze Petsitting.

    If you’re ready to get started as a house sitter, you can use our code RAF89928 or follow this link to receive 25% off annual membership for Trusted Housesitters. You can also sign up to Rover using our link to start getting paid for housesitting gigs.

    For home owners, use our code SUZES72456 or follow this link to receive £15 off your first booking with us through Rover.

    If you have any queries about house sitting, whether you’re a pet owner or looking to become a sitter, be sure to check out our FAQ page or get in touch with us directly any we’ll answer any questions you might have – we love helping others get started with house sitting! Head to our blog for more posts about house sitting.