What if you could travel to a place you`ve always wanted to visit and stay there for less than what bills are at home for a week? Visit Paris or London and stay rent-free for weeks or even months.
An opportunity like that sounded impossible to us until we spent five and a half months in the mountains of Panama free! We even had the use of a vehicle free of charge.
It would have been financially impossible for us to stay that long in a hotel. Renting a place in the same community we stayed would have cost us $9300 USD. One house sitting assignment helped us save that money and we got to experience another country and way of life because of that.
House sitting jobs make dream destinations affordable. We love to travel and have saved, sacrificed and gone into debt to visit places on our wish lists. There were trips we dreamed about taking, places we thought we would never see because we couldn’t afford accommodation costs.
There were many times amazing flight deals would appear in my inbox. I would open the email with so much excitement followed by a deflating reality check. The cost to get to some spectacular far-flung place was affordable but the cost to stay there was out of reach for us financially. House sitting jobs changed all that for us. Now we see enormous travel possibilities where impossible dreams were before.
You would think it would be hard to land house sitting jobs.
Truth is for such a great opportunity it really is quite easy. You do have to put yourself out there, present a good profile to garner homeowner’s interest. Just like applying for any job, you have to try more than once before you see results.
Applying for house sitting jobs you get what you put in so keep applying and you will be successful.
Who should house sit?
Where the responsibility may not be for everyone, all types of people make great house sitters. Singles, couples, families, working, retired or nomadic, there are benefits for all types.
For us, with no house to worry about back home the upside is enormous. We live rent-free for weeks or months and get to spend time with pets and learn about the cities we stay in from a local perspective. The latter is invaluable to our little expat experiment. It’s how we travel, we really want to learn local culture and house sitting jobs help us do that naturally.
House sitting is great for people who vacation one to four weeks a year as well. The majority of assignments are for these time frames in cities all over the world.
Travel Trends Show Local Experiences are growing in Popularity
Travel trends for 2015 show vacationers want to experience a local flavor on their trips, get to know a destination on a deeper level. People are choosing to stay in local neighborhoods with Airbnb, rent self-catering fully outfitted apartments.
They want to eat out at peer-to-peer venues and enjoy a local hosted dinner party with fellow travelers. House sitting is part of this growing trend.
House sitting, eating out and shopping where locals do is different. We feel doing so results in richer, deeper experiences than staying, eating and shopping in tourist areas. Business owners in local neighborhoods seem more interested in new faces; they are not inundated with different patrons like businesses in tourist venues.
Homeowners have a stake in getting to know you and recognize staying at their place is a trip for you to. They want you to enjoy your time in their home.
We have had great conversations and built friendships with homeowners, and local restaurant and shop owners. They wanted to know what brought us to their city and get to know us. We got the chance to learn about them and what they love about their home. These connections are golden for finding meaningful things to do and uncovering otherwise hidden gems to enjoy in the places we’ve visited.
Is it Hard to get Started House sitting?
No, it’s not hard. No harder than preparing a compelling resume. We have put together a free seven-part e course that outlines what you need to do to get started and tips and tricks we learned and employ to ensure a smooth and enjoyable house sit for both you and the homeowner. You can sign up in the big blue box at the top of this page.
It covers what we think are the most important steps to get that first house sitting job and tips to do a great job for the homeowners and earn a glowing review for your profile. We share our opinions as well as information on products and resources that we like and use. One resource offers access to opinions of other seasoned house sitters on which sites to join and how to use them best to land your first assignment.
We saved $9300 USD on accommodation costs with our first house sitting assignment. Had we rented with Airbnb in the same area, the same size and style of home we would have paid over $9000 in rental costs. If we had stayed in a hotel, it would have cost even more! The opportunity to stay rent free and live like a local saved us a lot of money and helped us get to know life in Panama.
Where do you want to travel? Maybe there is a house sitting assignment perfect for you in your dream destination.
If you have questions about house sitting, I wrote a detailed post with answers to 20 of the most popular questions we are asked on the subject. You can check it out here.
For a more detailed guide to house sitting please feel free to sign up for our free e-course.