While we’re on the road, one way we will be saving on expenses is house sitting at every opportunity. What’s house sitting? In basic terms, it’s home owners and house sitters coming together to provide a service that is beneficial to each other. Home owners need people to look after their homes, and possibly pets and gardens while their away travelling, while house sitters get free accommodation for a specified period of time in exchange for looking after someone’s property and possibly pets and garden. Win-Win!
But it’s not that easy. There are a lot of people out there looking for these opportunities, and the numbers are growing as more and more people start travelling like travellers, and less like tourists. So what’s the key? A kick-arse profile and a healthy dose of good luck.
These websites below will give you a great start in finding house sitting gigs. They’ve got plenty of information so do your research and start a profile. For the price of the annual membership you can save plenty of money with just one successful house sit placement. The more sites you join, the more chance you’ve got!
House Carers – House Carers are based in Newcastle, Australia and guide you through the process of successfully matching Homeowner with Sitters. House Sitters list their preferences through a simple registration process, while Homeowners communicate with Sitters through their confidential messages system. They also provide all the resources to make the house sit a success – including tips, checklist, House Sitting contract, guidelines, FAQ and much more. Smoothly navigable and user-friendly, the site walks you through the whole process – from understanding housesitting basics (under such headings as “What are the standard guidelines of a housesitting agreement?” and “Why do people register to housesit?”) to how to register and communicate through the site. You can start with a limited non-paid membership, then respond to messages or apply for a housesit. The full membership is $AU55.00 per year. Please note if you become full member by clicking the House Carers link and become a full member, we get a little commission to hep keep this website going and us on the road…yay!
Mind My House – MindMyHouse provides an online matching service to bring home owners and house sitters together for the free exchange of goods (accommodation) and/or services (house and pet sitting). For a small annual fee (US$20/£11/E16/AU$27), house sitters create and update a personal sitter available advert which features on the site. Home owners can login and search their database of house sitter ads for free. After making a shortlist of candidates, home owners can then contact house sitters by email or phone to discuss their house sitting assignment. Some home owners (although not many) choose to advertise their house sitting assignment. Only house sitters registered with Mind My House will be able to see home owners’ contact details. House sitters can then contact a home owner and try to sell themselves as the right candidate for the job.
The Caretaker Gazette – Not the best looking site, but The Caretake Gazette is a very effective, unique bi-monthly newsletter containing property care-taking and house sitting jobs, advice, and information for property caretakers, house sitters, and landowners. They predominantly have house-sitting gigs in all 50 US States, Canada and Mexico, as well as dozens of other countries. You can subscribe for two years for $US49.95, or three years for $US69.95. These subscription rates are for Caretaker.org online subscribers. Postal subscriptions with addresses within the USA are an extra $5/year.
Trusted House Sitters – Much like most other sites, Trusted House sitters provides a simple solution to this very common need. They connect home and pet owners who need a sitter with trustworthy people who want to housesit; reliable pet lovers and experienced home minders who are willing to live in your home and look after it while you’re away (usually for free). Previous experience is not essential, it is more important to show why you would be an ideal house sitter. A house sitter membership costs $AU49 for 3 months, $AU64 for 6 months, and $AU79 for 12 months.
House Sitting Worldwide – Another ordinary looking website, House Sitting World provides a free service for home owners looking for house sitters and pet minders. Home owners can place a free house sitters wanted ad or search through the lists of available registered house and pet sitters for carers that are available in their area. A small fee applies for house sitters looking for opportunities in the UK, Europe, USA, Canada and Australia ($AU50, $US40, £20, €30, $CA50). One fee covers all areas for up to 12 months, anywhere else is free (South America, Central America and the Caribbean).
House-Sitters America – A house and pet sitting service dedicated solely for USA’s homeowners and house sitters. Homeowners can register for free, while house sitters pay a $US30 per year membership fee.
Are there any house sitting websites we’ve missed? Which ones do you use and have served you well? Let us know in the comments below.