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What is House-Sitting?

Our HouseSit Match Definition of ‘House-Sitting’

House-sitting is a mutually beneficial arrangement between two parties – most usually taking place between a homeowner and a house-sitter – enabling the owner to leave their property and pets in the care of the sitter for an agreed period of time. The house-sitter in exchange gains free accommodation. The arrangement can be as formal or informal as the partners require.

Retired couple house-sitting for a dog

Some house-sitting jobs are about the pets

Here are some of our HouseSit Match members’ house-sitting experiences, photographs and blog content that will help us describe what arrangements take place and how they are arranged between the respective parties.

For the Homeowner

House-sitters are people who will agree to move into your property as part of their working holiday or sometimes a professional assignment, in order to care for your home and pets in your absence. They understand that it is a responsible role and that your home and pets are their priority whilst they are living in your property. It is a good idea to draw up a house-sitting agreement in order to list the responsibilities you expect the sitter to meet (registered members have access to our full suite – ask us for details!

Young family kneeling outside their chalet home with a dog

Some homeowners have only one pet

homeowner with six of her dogs on sunny terrace

Some owners have lots of pets

TOP TIPS – homeowners wanting house-sitting –

• Help you prepare for the dog-sitter house-sitter 
Some Vet’s top tips for cat-owners and cat-sitters before house-sitting begins

For the House-Sitter –

House-sitting is a working holiday for an individual, a couple or a family, where they secure free accommodation in exchange for care and management of the owner’s home, property and pets. In more cases than not this arrangement also includes care for the resident pets. This is usually an unpaid arrangement, although occasionally a small daily or block fee can be arranged depending on the responsibilities involved for the sitter.

House-sitting - house-sitter overseas his assignment

Some house-sitting assignments are about the property

House-sitter adored by the dog she is house-sitting

Some housesits are all about the pets












TOP TIPS – for house-sitters when house-sitting –

Advice for Pet-sitters and House-Sitters – Notes from a Homeowner
Homeowner’s Brief for a House-sitter – And before you begin… 

For both Sitters and Owners – ‘House-sitting’ can be So much more –
For both homeowners and house-sitters house-sitting can be so much more if a good relationship and trust is established and the work is accomplished in the spirit of the agreement. It can be the root of a most fulfilling and relaxing working/holiday for both parties. What’s the big secret to making this arrangement work well for both parties?

TOP TIP in our experience…

Build a good relationship before you start the house-sitting arrangement– make an effort to get to know each other

And what House-sitting is Not –

House-sitting is not a home-exchange or a house-swap. It does not require one homeowner to meet the needs of another in order to find some where to go. It is in fact a temporary arrangement made by one homeowner preparing for their own absence from home – they make their home available for a housesit in exchange for house-sitters to care for their property and pets. And house-sitters make their presence known to the homeowner as suitable candidates to take on that house-sit assignment.
House-sitting platforms like HouseSitMatch.com exist to facilitate the secure arrangement of house-sits between sitters and owners.

Why do house-sitting..?
House-sitting saves money – for both sitter and owner.

As a house-sitter:
– House-sitting saves you money on travel
One of the greatest concerns of any traveller or tourist (whether house sitter or homeowner) is the cost. As a traveller you are constantly thinking about how much this relaxing holiday or trip is going to cost. Often the full cost is not fully clear to you until you return to face your bank account and credit card statement in the cold light of day. Making house-sitting arrangements to cover your accommodation costs can save a lot of money

As a homeowner:
– House-sitting saves money on kennels, gardeners, and increased insurance premiums
And as a homeowner who holidays and travels away from home you save money in a variety of ways. Insurance premiums for example. One generally gives this little thought until the unthinkable happens. In the unlikely event of being burgled while your home is unoccupied your insurance premiums are bound to increase. Ensuring your home is occupied can be a major deterrent to thieves.

If you have pets and you board them in kennels or with a specialist dog boarder then the kenneling fees will soon add up depending on the length of your trip of course. Finding house-sitters willing to care for your pets at no extra cost other than free accommodation in your home can offer a great saving.

To pay or not to pay for house-sitting

Over the question of payment for house-sitting services – we believe house-sitting should be an exchange of free services. However, some homeowners have specialist and occasionally extensive requirements and acknowledge these extra and specialist duties with a payment. Here is a blog to help you consider your own situation

House-sitters can also maintain your garden so you need not worry about the presentation of your property during your absence. They can also act as a pet-sitter removing the need for such incremental costs by ensuring your property is occupied, and your pets are cared for in their own home for free and you have a sitter resident to manage the gardens.

Well presented home looks occupied with car in drive and dog on path

House-Sitting – Maintains an occupied look to your property even though you are away

Pet-sitter playing with six small dogs

Pet-sitters in your home can save you a lot in kennel fees

House-sitting – to keep the status quo at home gives peace of mind 

– As the house-sitter –
Knowing you’re saving a significant percentage of your travel budget by securing free accommodation with a house-sitting assignment can be liberating, and can add to your relaxed state of mind while you are travelling. It can enable you to travel further afield as some of our house-sitters – the Expat Experiment – have found 

– As the homeowner –
Choosing the house sitter yourself can be very reassuring and ease the worries of a home owner absent from their property for more than a few days. Knowing that you have personally briefed the sitter/s with all the routines and regimens particular to you and your home to make sure that your home, garden and pets are managed as you would want in your absence can be a great source of comfort.

If you would like to register as either a House-Sitter or a Homeowner to make the most of House-sitting register today and join our other members at HouseSit Match


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

Lamia Walker
Hi, I am Lamia, founder of HouseSit Match. After years of corporate travel and stressing about home and pet care when away from home, I decided to build a solution, online. Now I run HouseSit Match an online network where we help to match home and pet-owners with house-sitters and pet-sitters in a friendly social way! Helping our members combines my passions for pets, travel, marketing and I meet fabulous new people every day!
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