How to Start House Sitting? A Guide for Beginners

trusted housesitters discount code

How can you start house sitting - and live rent free worldwide? And how can you get a TrustedHousesitters discount codeFirst things first, if you've stumbled across this page because you want to 'live rent free worldwide' and have no idea what house sitting actually is, you might ask what is house sittingEssentially, house sitting is like babysitting but for houses and pets, not babies. Homeowners go away leaving you in charge of the house and pets. They get free house care and pet care, you get free accommodation. Win-win. And the biggest win? You can do it anywhere in the world. Yes! Free accommodation world-wide!

There are hundreds of reasons people want to house sit; from long-term travel to luxury living and beyond. There are plenty of niches including vegan house sitting, (And, incidentally, there are hundreds of reasons people want house sitters). So at this point you should hopefully know what house sitting is and you should be excited to get started with it. 

But Why Listen to Us?

Well firstly, because we're going to give you a Trustedhousesitters discount code 😉, but here are some actual reasons you should listen to us. It's no secret we LOVE house sitting. Although we no longer house sit full-time, our first two years of travel were solely possible through house sitting. House sitting is also the main reason we are able to be in the position that we are today (travelling the world, living off our travel blog, vlog and social media). In fact, this blog was originally just a house sitting blog - it told the stories of how we found house sits and what it was like to housesit in certain countries. We have house sat in ten countries: Spain, Germany, Italy, Australia, the UKFinlandPortugal, Greece, the Netherlands and Thailand. House sitting gave us over two years of free accommodation! 
trustedhousesitters discount code
Our fourth house sit - a house with a pool and tennis court on the Gold Coast, Australia

We've house sat villas with swimming pools, homes on deserted beaches, apartments right in the centre of some of the world's most famous cities - you name it, we've house sat there! Ultimately, with over 20 house sits under our belt, and most of those being house-sits to die for, we know what we're talking about. We know how to get started properly and how to lay a solid foundation to enable you to house sit well for the next few years. But we started off just like you, worse probably, we made lots of silly mistakes when we first started and we're now in the position to understand what they were and prevent you from making those same mistakes!
housesitting portugal
Lesson one: learn how to make a dog smile ;) - (Portugal House Sit) 

So, without further ado, let's get started: 

  • How can I start house sitting?
  • How can I find those great house sits?
  • How can I live worldwide and rent free?

Step 1: How to Find House Sits

Let us reveal the best way to find your first house sit. A lot of people ask us these questions - where do we find the house sits? The local library? The newspaper? Owl post? Actually, house sitting used to mainly be done through agencies and it was mostly done by retired people. The reason was two-fold: retired people tended to have the time, and money, to go off galavanting and live in any country. BUT with the introduction of the internet house sitting has had a make-over: 

Firstly: instead of agencies, house sitting jobs are now mainly on websites specially designed for house sitting (i.e. house sitting websites). Secondly: with more and more people working online and becoming digital nomads, younger and younger people are able to 'retire' early. Or, more accurately they are able to work anywhere, anytime - as long as there's internet. So, thanks to the internet, in the last few years house sitting has become more accessible to a wider audience. Almost anyone can do it, like us - or, more importantly, you! 
housesitting blog
Fancy your own private beach in Western Australia? 

All you need to do is sign-up to a house sitting website, create a profile and apply to the available house sits. 

Step 2: Which House Sitting Website Should I Choose?

With lots of choices, it's hard to know which one to go for. These are the main ones:

So which one should you choose? For newbies it can be quite confusing, some of these websites are more expensive than others, but generally, the more expensive they are, the more house sitting assignments are available.

housesitting italy
A bonus of Housesitting: looking after dogs that smell flowers 

Of course, if money were no object we'd recommend signing up to all of them! But house sitters are often budget travellers, where money is an object. Now in the past, we've signed up for a few house sitting websites, but we always recommend Trusted House Sitters, let me reveal to you:

  • Why we signed up with them
  • Why we are very pleased we did (and why we renewed our membership two years in a row). 

    Why we signed up with Trusted House Sitters

    • It's the biggest house sitting website out there, and bigger means better in the form of more house sitting opportunities than anywhere else.
    • It tells you once a house sitter has been found, so you don't waste time applying to ones that are already sorted (not true for some other housesitting websites).
    • There's a great choice in the length of the sit - just for the weekend or for a whole year, no matter how long you want to do it there's always one out there
    • Similarly with the choice of countries. On THS the countries that pop up the most are the UK, Australia, New Zealand, the USA, house sitting in Canada and Spain. But most other countries pop up too.
    • They send you an email every time there is a new sit, so you can get straight in there and apply. 
    • It's for everyone: retired people, families and young people too! And everyone in between.

    But the main reason we signed up to Trusted house sitters is that you can browse the sits before you sign-up, and we found a sit that looked amazing, which ultimately made us sign up! We want to inspire other people the way we were inspired, so we update this page House Sitting Opportunities which shows you the best sits out there to date. Take a look and see if anything takes your fancy! Alternately, browse Trusted House Sitters yourself and see if there's anything you'd like! It's free to window shop :) Now, enough about why we chose them - here's why we are super pleased we picked them, and why we renewed our membership two years in a row:

    1. All of our Australian house sits came through them - they enabled us to travel all over Australia (Victoria, South Australia, Queensland, Western Australia, New South Wales and Canberra). In other words, that was nine months of free accommodation in Australia: 

    housesitting australia

    2. Next, all of our
    European house sits came through them - the Netherlands, Spain, Finland, the UK, Portugal, Germany, Greece and Italy. In other words, another 15 months worth of free accommodation:

    housesitting europe

    3. We now have the next six months of accommodation sorted, again through this site. So We basically renewed our membership with them because of the success we'd had with them: two whole years of free accommodation in homes which almost always came with a 'bonus' - a pool, a vineyard, a sauna, a whirlpool, etc.

    Trusted House Sitters Free Trial

    We get a lot of messages from people asking us about the Trusted House Sitters Free Trial Period. At the moment this is not something that Trusted House Sitters currently offer, so firstly, allow us to explain to you why it's absolutely worth signing up to Trusted House Sitters and then we'll sweeten the deal and offer you a Trustedhousesitters discount code

    Quick side step: how much does it cost to sign up to Trusted House Sitters?

    12 months = just £7.42 per month! (Note, you do have to pay for 12 months all at once, i.e. £89). What!? £89 all at once? Wait a minute, hear us out: If you are serious about travelling, accommodation will be one of your biggest (if not the biggest) expenditure of your trip. If you stay in hostels, hotels or even AirBnB, you know £89 isn't going to get you very far. But with house sitting it gets you a year's worth of accommodation! It's only £7.42 a month which is just £0.25 a day (or £0.125 if you're a couple... or £0.0625 if you are a family of four.. okay I'll stop now). PLUS we've got a special 10% Trustedhousesitters Discount Code for you:

    10% Trusted House Sitters Discount Code

    But enough sidestepping, let's get back to the steps:

    Step 3: Getting Your First House Sit

    It can be hard. We're not going to lie to you, when we first started house sitting we found it hard to get our first sit - just because you are competing against other house sitters and those without references have less of a leg to stand on. BUT the good news is, once we did a few special things we got our first sit, and then after that, it was easier and easier to get picked for house sits. After one year of house sitting and 8 good references, we were in the position of getting pretty much every sit we applied to. Now, after two years of house sitting, we are getting numerous emails from homeowners asking us to house sit, and we're booked up for the next six months.
    pet sitting
    Housesitting does, of course, involve some sitting down 

    Okay, so my point is it gets easier, but we want to make it easy for you to get your first house sit  - remember we mentioned the special things we needed to do at the beginning? At the time they weren't very obvious, and talking to newbie house sitters now it turns out it's not so obvious to them either. So, to make things easier for everyone we've written a sweet little ebook which reveals all our tips and tricks and guarantees you get your first house sit. It's entitled 'House Sitting in Australia - A Guide For First Time House Sitters', but the tips and tricks can be applied to any country you're looking to house sit in first -i.e. it's not just for Australian house sits :) You can read more about the ebook here.
    housesitting netherlands
    Simba and Genie - best names ever?

    Basically, it has everything you need to know in order to secure your first sits, including:

    • What the application process is like
    • How newbie house sitters can get references - and why it's essential that they do
    • How and why to get a police check
    • How to write the perfect application letter - everything that must and must not be included
    • Why you should Skype with homeowners before agreeing to do a sit - and what to talk about 
    • How you can work whilst housesitting (and why you don't necessarily have to)
    • How to groom a dog
    • What to do if a dog gets sick and/or misses its owner. 

    PLUS - exclusive email access to two house-sitting gurus (aka us). If you've read our ebook and still aren't getting sits, we will give you free help, simply email us and ask :) Okay, so you've heard our recommendations on who to sign up to, and how to get your first sit. Anything else? 
    housesitting germany
    Note: horses look funny when they eat apples

    Step 4: How to Have a Perfect First House Sit

    For this, we recommend practice. Practice on your parent's house, or your friends' house or your neighbours'. Any house you can get your hands on really. Essentially though house sitting isn't really hard, but we find it helps to follow this rule (that we made up): be a mixture of perfect guest and perfect tenant. What we mean by this: perfect guests clean up after themselves and are considerate of the owner. But guests don't clean up dog poop and aren't responsible if the fuse goes off - that's where being the perfect tenant comes in.
    pet sitting australia
    A disadvantage of housesitting: dogs that are better looking than you

    It's not all dog poop and cleaning though. We've found that when we act like this perfect guest/tenant hybrid we are treated like a perfect guest/tenant hybrid - on their return, homeowners often treat us to day trips, meals out, fancy gifts and more! We have also made this video for newcomers to housesitting, enjoy :)

    Wrap Up: A Guide for Beginners

    1. Sign up to Trusted House Sitters  
    2. Take a 10% Trusted House Sitters Discount Code 
    3. For insider tips and on how to successfully get your first house sits, read this ebook.
    4. Be a tenant/guest hybrid  And hopefully you'll be housesitting places like this soon:

    So what do you think? Would you like to be a house sitter? 

    trustedhousesitters discount code

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    We overland. We eat plants and fungi. We live outside as much as possible. We are all connected. A female travel blogger overlanding and writing about ecotourism, ethical and sustainable travel, socially conscious travel and housesitting. An online travel magazine since 2015.


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