How to Use House Sitting for Free Vacations (Forget About Those Expensive Hotels)

Accommodation costs can make up a large part of your holiday budget. But what if I told you there’s a way to find free or cheap accommodation, all around the world?

If you’ve never considered it before, housesitting could be the way forward for you!

How To Get Free Accommodation As You Travel

As the cost of living soars and our budgets get tighter, traveling can seem like a faraway dream. Housesitting could be your answer! Even traveling as a family unit you can access free accommodation in the form of house-sitting.

Whether you want to go across town, interstate, or around the world. There’s sure to be a house sit that’s perfect for you. There are apartments in Paris to be cared for, villas in Bali, beach front homes in Australia and homes in jungle of Costa Rica to care for!

How Do I Become A Pet or House Sitter?

Your best bet is to subscribe to 1 or 2 of the many house-sitting sites. That way you have a broad range to choose from. Stick to reputable sites to cut down on any potential problems.

Simply create a profile and start applying! It’s that easy! There are also a lot of groups and pages on social media that can connect you with potential sits.

Ask around with friends and workmates. That way you can build up a couple of references and have a stronger sitting profile. Or start with a couple of sits close to home. That way you feel comfortable with the surroundings while you learn the ropes.

How Does Housesitting Work?

In a nutshell, housesitting involves looking after someone’s home while they are away. In exchange, you’ll have a free and comfortable place to sleep.

Most housesitting tends to involve keeping the house safe and taking care of pets. There are many sites out there to connect homeowners and travelers. For a small subscription fee, you have access to all available sits.

Sits can be anywhere in the world – from your doorstep to another state or over the opposite side of the world. I’ve often done house-sits in my suburb, just to feel like I’m on a mini holiday. It can often take you to places you’d never normally add to your itinerary!

Do You Get Paid to House Sit?

Some house sits are paid. So what the going rate for house sitting in your area is. Just remember if you plan on travelling internationally you need to consider visas and taxes if you plan to charge.

Connecting Travelers and Pet Lovers All Around The World

House sitting is a win/win situation for pet owners and travelers alike. Home and pet owners can venture away, safe in the knowledge that their homes and animals are being taken care of.

House sitters have a place to rest their heads, with all the mod-con comforts of home. While there is some responsibility to be there to care for the pets, there’s often a lot of freedom during that time.

Plenty of opportunities for a day trip or two to explore the area.

Are There Many House Sitting Options Available?

In short – yes! House sits can vary from a 1 bedroom apartment in the center of Rome to a ranch in the USA.  If you can dream it, chances are there is a sit available there! You may need some flexibility with dates, location, and responsibilities.

The more flexible you are, the higher the chances of finding a suitable sit. For example, if you have your heart set on Paris in August, you may need to accept sit a little out of the city and catch a train to the city center.

Throw caution to the wind and explore a completely different area! Be mindful of location if you are traveling without a car. Plenty of sites are close to public transport.

How Do I Find A Suitable House Sit?

Once you’ve subscribed and created a profile, it’s time to start planning. Search for a city or area that you’d like to explore to bring up a list of options.

Sit jobs will detail the pets, location details, and the expected responsibilities. If anything takes your fancy, follow the simple application process. 

Keep in mind that popular locations will attract a lot of applications. It’s a good idea to create a profile that will stand out from the crowd, and have some great references to add. A personalized note to the homeowners doesn’t hurt either.

You can also set up a search alert, to let you know when sits become available in the area you are interested in. House sits can vary in their period – from a couple of days to weeks or months.

Are There Housesits Available For Families?

Definitely! Quite a lot of home and pet owners are families themselves. They are more than happy to have another family look after their homes. Pets are often used to boisterous families and will feel more comfortable.

You can tailor your searches to bring up family-friendly sits. A one-bedroom apartment in a city center won’t be suitable for a family of 5. But plenty of other sits will be. 

You may not have the broad range as you would as a single traveler or couple. But there are still enough to make it worth your while to subscribe.

Do I Have To Pay For A Housesit?

All you need to pay to house sit is the site membership fees and your living costs.  You may luck out and find a sit that is willing to pay for your services, but on the whole house sitting is a straight swap. Accommodation for pet care and house minding. 

Saving on accommodation costs alone will save you thousands! More spending money for exploring and enjoying your trip. And as you have access to the facilities found in a normal home, you can clean and cook yourself, saving even more. The most house sits will give unlimited access to things like the internet, saving even more.

Is There Any Way To Make Sure I Get House Sits?

The best way to get a step ahead of the field is to create a profile that attracts positive attention. And get a few 5-star references under your belt. The best way to make sure you have good references is to be a great house or pet sitter!

House sitting needs to be treated with a level of seriousness. It’s not a hotel. You will need to take the homeowner’s requests on board. Respect their pets and property. Always leave the property as you found it. Spotlessly clean, with happy pampered pets. Remove all rubbish, leftover food, and personal property.

Only apply for sits you feel comfortable completing. If you have a fear of dogs don’t choose a sit with 3 German Sheppard dogs!

Why not try house-sitting next time you are planning a trip and are put off by the spiraling cost?

As someone who has traveled and house sat, it’s a very rewarding travel experience. And very budget-friendly!

Author: Britt

I am Britt. I have been house-sitting and pet-sitting for the past seven years. I have cared for 25 dogs, 35 cats one turtle, and one rabbit over 80+ houses in 15 countries.

The opportunity to experience different homes, cultures, and communities has been extraordinary.

I’ve connected with homeowners seeking reliable sitters through house-sitting platforms like Aussie House Sitters and Trusted House Sitters. This unique way of living has allowed me to save money on accommodation, explore new cultures, and meet new people.

Being a member of these platforms has broadened my horizons and opened doors to short- and long-term house-sitting jobs. I’ve found joy in providing excellent pet care and ensuring the home is well-maintained.

I get many questions about how to start as a housesitter, so please reach out if you have any questions! I want everyone to enjoy this incredible lifestyle as well!

You can read more about Jay and me here!

Or connect with me on Facebook or in our house-sitting community on Facebook.

House Sitting in Salon-de-Provence
Me (Britt) House Sitting in Salon-de-Provence, France

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