House Sitting Ireland Guide

house sitting ireland

House sitting in Ireland may be a dream come true for you: you can have a truly authentic Irish experience, for free! Through house sitting, you can live in a real Irish home whilst the homeowners go on holiday. In return for looking after their house and pets for free, you receive free accommodation and more, put simply it's a free exchange of services where everyone wins - especially the pets! If you're thinking about house sitting in Ireland, here is a blog post about how to find house sits in Ireland, what to expect when you do your sit, and my own personal experiences house sitting in Ireland (to paint a picture of what it could be like for you):

House Sitting in Ireland: What to Expect?

The following tips are for people who are planning to do house sits in Ireland - if you find this country just as amazing as we have, you might also want to consider moving there full time. Don't forget: you will definitely need help with acquiring Irish citizenship.

#1. It rains a lot in Ireland

You must be used to that, I hear you cry, you're from England! Yes. And the difference between the weather in Ireland and the weather in England is that Ireland's weather is better. Sorry Anglophiles. In England, it will drizzle for days and be grey skied af. In Ireland you can have all four seasons in one day: I went for a two-hour walk and experienced rain (of course), stunning sunshine, hail (!), more rain, more sunshine etc. Yes, it rains in Ireland, but give it five minutes and it will be doing something else.

house sitting ireland

Snow, on the other hand, is a big deal. It rarely snows in Ireland but when it does it's deep and scary. In the countryside they don't grit the roads so you won't be able to go anywhere - make base camp at home, put the fire and the kettle on, and hope that the snow melts before your homeowners get back so they can get back in!

#2. You might be house-sitting an eco-house

Or some kind of house that you might not be used to. There might be some kind of weird something - especially if you're out in the sticks, like a sewage system that stays on-site, a wind turbine,  an outside privy, solar panels, or (very common in the sticks) not a lot of internet.

house sitting ireland

In my experience with eco houses, they're great to house sit: they're beautiful and they're the kind of house I want to live in in the future, but for newbie sitters, make sure you know how to reset the electricity if it goes off, how to work the hot water etc, etc.

#3. There might be a lot of livestock

Ireland is a country that's devoid of people but full of livestock. As a house sitter, this means that your homeowners might have chickens for you to look after, or you might find the abundance of cattle a pain when you're walking the dog / trying to drive on the road etc.

house sitting ireland guide

Ask your homeowners in advance if you can borrow their wellies, hello cowpats. [Further reading: tips for travelling vegan in Ireland]

#4. Everyone knows everyone in Ireland

In Ireland (or at least in the countryside anyway), random people will say hi to you just because they recognise the home owner's car or dog or know that you're staying at "the McNamara" house. People leave their doors unlocked and people genuinely look out for each other.

ireland house sitting

Some house sitters have told me that they don't like feeling 'spied on' when they house sit: e.g. they don't like it when neighbours or family of the homeowner pop around to 'see if everything is alright'. If you are one of those house sitters, be warned you are guaranteed to be 'spied on' in Ireland. But don't worry, it's not about trying to dob you in, it's generally about being friendly!

house sitting jobs in ireland

Time and time again in Ireland strangers told me that it's illegal to drive if you've had anything to drink, but then proceeded to encourage me to do it anyway saying 'don't worry, there are no cops around here'. (Don't worry mum, I didn't.) During my house sit in Ireland, a distant relative of the previous owner and his extended family came around to have a look at the house. This is pretty normal. Sometimes friendly Irish people can seem (or be) a bit old fashioned.  E.g. when the guy at the corner shop told me off for helping my man carry a box because I was emasculating him or whatever. Generally, in Ireland, this kind of casual sexism is done with the best of intentions, mainly by the older generation and is 'part of the experience'.

House Sitting in Ireland: My Personal Experience

I've already touched on my personal experiences house sitting in Ireland with the casual sexism story and the family that came around to see their relatives' old house. But here is some more: I was looking after one dog, two cats, four chickens, and an eco-house. The homeowners left me their car and each day I went to check on Granny's house and chickens too (she was away with them - sidestep to tell you this is one of the main reasons people have house sitters - it gives the homeowners the freedom to take their trusted family members on holiday with them, instead of asking them to house sit).

dog sitting ireland

The dog was an absolute dream to look after, one of the most intelligent dogs I've ever met and super cuddly. With plenty of land for her to run around in, her brain and body were content and she didn't really need walking (nevertheless I generally took her up to Granny's). She did not like being walked in the rain (thank God) but loved cuddling up on the sofa with me in front of the fire. Dream dog.

cat sitting ireland

The cats were both super cute, one was pretty shy and the other was very friendly. Both got on really well with the dog and they were a gorgeous little unit. Like cuddling up in a pile in front of the fire kind of gorgeous. The chickens were easy: let them out in the morning, shut them in at night and make sure they have food and water. They were also cute. And the house was amazing: gigantic bathtub, cosy kitchen, plenty of space inside and out and a hot tub and a sauna! This was an eco-house so there were wind turbines, solar panels and more. We didn't have to do anything out of the ordinary with these, but the hot water and heating were heated by the aga, which meant a little bit of pre-planning. All in all, it's a comfortable house that literally couldn't be more perfect in my eyes. The homeowners were lovely, picked us up from the airport, dropped us off when they came back, left us a car and an abundance of food. I love you, Jess and Steve.

Wrap Up: House Sitting Jobs in Ireland

All in all, I really enjoyed house sitting in Ireland, and I'd definitely recommend it to someone who wants to start house sitting: it's foreign enough to feel foreign, but not so foreign that you feel lost - perfect for newbies. But also perfect for experienced house sitters: I personally found this to be the perfect place to crack on and finish my book. And once again folks, don't forget: if you're also considering immigrating to Ireland, you will need the help of a professional lawyer.

house sitting in ireland

I have done multiple house sitting jobs across ten countries and three continents, but where do I find these house sitting jobs? Through TrustedHousesitters. They are the biggest house sitting website out there, and bigger, in this case, means better - there are an abundance of house sitting jobs waiting for you, including in Ireland. Currently, there are 29 house sits in Ireland alone, with more popping up each day. Membership lasts for a whole year, which means you would have the opportunity to branch out and house sit in London, or Europe or maybe go even further abroad. So let me know if you have any questions about house sitting! We have also made this video for newcomers to house sitting, enjoy :)

P.S.: If you're interested in a way of travelling and getting accommodation cheaply, you might wanna check out house sitting. was kind enough to provide us and our readers with a 10% discount, feel free to click on the link to use it :)

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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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