Top tips for getting house sitters
Holidays are dreams in real life.
The idea of swapping the humdrumness of normality with luxury, relaxation, adventure and escapism is dizzying. But holidays are so much better when you know your home is being looked after too.
Enter the house sitter – your holiday’s knight in shining armour.
A house sitter offers peace of mind that your personal belongings (and even your pets) are OK while you’re away gallivanting at the other end of the country or on the other side of world.
So how do you go about finding your next house sitting star?
We’ve pulled together a few house sitting tips to get you started:
Start searching for a reliable house sitter at least three months in advance if you’re going away for a long period of time. Neighbourly. co.nz is a great way to advertise for people close to home who already know your neighbourhood.
Don’t be afraid to hold interviews and ask for references to find the right people.
You want to make sure the person you entrust your home to is actually trustworthy.
Got pets? You’d better decide if house sitting also includes pet sitting. If not, book a place in an animal hotel well in advance to guarantee a space.
Make sure you clearly establish house sitting expectations.
They could be as simple as collecting the mail from the letterbox every day, right through to walking the dog every morning and mowing the lawns every fortnight.
Think about paying your house sitters if they’re going to be away from home for a while.
Just a few days is normally fine without reimbursement but for weeks at a time a house sitter may expect to be paid if they’re putting their own life on hold to look after yours. If in doubt, have an open and honest conversation with your house sitter about their expectations and go from there.
Establish whether you need a house sitter or a house minder.
If you’re just going away for the weekend, your neighbour might be able to keep an eye on your place from the comfort of their own living room. Tips for becoming a house sitter: If you’re not planning a holiday in the near future, house sitting could be a great (and affordable!) alternative.
Tell your community via Neighbourly.co.nz that you’re keen and on any public request for a house sitter immediately.
Sell yourself. If you do spot an advert for a house sitter needed, make sure you offer a little about yourself so your neighbour can trust your experience.
Consider sharing previous experience, what you’re comfortable doing (eg pet-sitting) and why the opportunity interests you.
People are more likely to hire house sitters if they already know and trust them so start meeting and being friendly to your neighbours!
Ask for a reference if you’ve done house sitting before. This is a great thing to offer to share with those who might be looking for someone to care for their home.
Some people are house sitters.
These are the types of people who subscribe to house sitting websites and book so many back-to-back stints that they rarely live in their own home.
Register with a house sitting website like housesitters. co.nz if this sounds a bit like you.
A holiday in paradise – but who is looking after your house while you’re away?