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Housesitting student – benefits from an ascetic life

Housesitting student enjoys the company of Spaniels

Alex, a housesitting student, finds caring for two Spaniels in a quiet English village just the escape he needs from normal distractions of home life. He was trying to finish his dissertation, so a peaceful new location with simple pet care routines was exactly what he needed.

Rex dogsitting small

Alex the housesitting student

Cliched thinking often suggests that countryside soothes the soul. For me, it is not the nugget of truth that belies the cliche, but the outdated and lazy expression that irritates the rash. Housesitting as a student in Berkshire provided me with a wonderful experience that greatly exceeded my expectations. After meeting Mr and Mrs S one week prior to the housesit, where we sat down and discussed my responsibilities for my week’s duties, I felt well briefed and prepared for my escape to the country.

Why housesitting as a student appealed to me

When I first saw the housesit advert online in the HouseSitMatch listings it jumped out at me as a great opportunity at just the right time. I had my final Undergraduate dissertation to write and I needed a quiet space and place to read and do the hard thinking. Housesitting in a new environment, a quiet village not too far from home, seemed like an opportunity too good to miss. I had dog sat before, for a couple of Spaniels as it happens, so felt ready to take on this challenge.

After meeting Mr and Mrs S one week prior to the housesit, where we had sat down and discussed my responsibilities for home and dog care over coffee, I moved my books in and the housesit began.

Housesitting student Alex in Berkshire

Housesitting student Alex in Berkshire

Experience as a housesitting student

The house I looked after was was spacious, warm and comfortable, the owners had not long moved in. I really appreciated the company of the two doggies, characteristically individual from the other, one shy, one bold, but both very friendly in their own way and eager for challenging walks through the mud, leaves and twigs. The house was really well situated close to the village centre between four pubs and within walking distance of the village shop. There were varied arable and pastoral fields through which the dogs and I could explore at our leisure. Although the weather didn’t quite hold true for the entirety of my stay it was still great fun to walk in the fields with them as my companions.

Time for walkies


Two Spaniels sleeping in a basket

Toby and Harvey the Spaniels

One of the chief reasons for deciding to housesit was to work on my last major piece of work for University, my dissertation. Housesitting meant I would be far away from the busy daily existence and distracting routines of home and work. The reciprocal housesitter/homeowner relationship has allowed me the opportunity to realise my ideal of working in a fresh setting, whilst happily helping out Mr and Mrs S in taking care of their home and dogs whilst on holiday. For me this beautifully simple exchange of services is particularly suited to a student as it allows for a shallow wallet and the need for a quiet cubbyhole to read and write.

To start your housesitting adventure or to find your housesitting solution register with HouseSitMatch:

To register as a House-sitter follow this link

To register as a Homeowner follow this link

Alex Walker
As a student of Social Anthropology at Manchester University, I have a deep interest in how people live all over the world. As a student, housesitting has been a great help in offering me quiet and peaceful places where I can read and study while caring for the homeowner’s property and pets. Now my studies are complete, I look forward to travelling and housesitting so I can go further and experience new countries and cultures between my work and holidays.

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