What is housesitting?
Let’s start with the basics! Housesitting is an exchange between two parties, where a housesitter looks after a home while the owner is away. There are sometimes pets to take care of too, so the sitter will be petsitting as well as housesitting, but we tend to use the term housesitting as an umbrella term for all these responsibilities.
There are many ways to arrange a housesit; via social media, through word of mouth, for friends and family, but the most common way to find a housesit or housesitter is by using a housesitting website. Each site differs in its operation but the concept is the same – a mutually beneficial agreement between the sitter and owner.
The website we use most often 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 housesitting. Homeowners upload a listing, giving details about what responsibilities are involved in taking care of their home and pets, and sitters apply. Homeowners 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, like Rover, are more conventional in their approach. Pet owners search on the website for a sitter and contact them directly, paying a nightly fee for the sitter to provide pet care. There are no housesit listings, just a simple profile for the pet owner to complete, though it isn’t compulsory to fill in all the details. For people like us who prefer to pick our own adventures, Rover could sometimes be a risk as incomplete profiles mean we’re not 100% sure what we’re booking in to when invited. This is where our years of experience come in handy – we make sure to ask lots of questions to make sure we know exactly what our responsibilities will be on-sit. From time to time it’s nice to top up the travel fund with these paid sits too, and all of our Rover housesits to date have been amazing!
If you’re already raring to get started as a housesitter, you can use our code RAF89928 or follow this link to receive 25% off an annual membership at Trusted Housesitters! You can also sign up for Rover using our link to sign up for paid housesitting gigs!
For homeowners, use our code SUZES72456 or follow this link to receive £15 off your first booking with us through Rover!
But before you dive in, be sure to check out more of our Pawsome Guide for more information about housesitting!