Now that you’ve decided to add housesitting as one of your options to travel the world for free, you need to create a profile that will make homeowners trust you. And today, I am going to teach you how.
I didn’t have any idea that venturing into house sitting would be really difficult. Homeowners prefer sitters who have previous experience and references — so what if you are new?
What if you’ve never house-sat before? Would there be a chance that you’ll be able to land one?
I am not sure, to be honest. I don’t have any idea how homeowners choose their sitters (aside from profile references from previous homeowners) but I think having a well-presented profile will really help.
First, sign up with Trusted House Sitters, a website where homeowners and sitters all over the world connect. Once you’ve completed the signing up process, the following tips will help.
House-sitting profile tips
A strong headline
A headline is one of the highlights of your profile. It is kind of similar to the “current mission” that you have to fill out when creating an account on CouchSurfing (CS). However, in CS, it’s really not as important as it is on Trusted House Sitters. Here are some examples of headlines that you can refer to upon completing your profile:
- Animal-loving vegetarian ready to take good care for your home and pets.
- Maximum awesome couple who is about to start a one year ’round the world journey by house sitting.
- Five foot two multilingual girl from Poland currently house-sitting in England.
- Honest, hardworking and reliable backpacker from the state of Texas available for house and pet sit.
- Newbie house-sitters available worldwide for any house-sitting gig. We don’t know where to go yet but we’ll come to you!
Make sure that your headline reflects who you are. Who are you anyway? If I am a homeowner, what will make me hire you to take care of my house and pets? Why would I allow you to enter my home even? Flashy and highfalutin jargons are not a requirement. As the saying goes, “be yourself” and everything will follow.
Profile: be personal
This is where you have to sell yourself, most especially if you do not have any previous house-sitting experience. It is usually difficult for people to understand online profiles so being articulate and straightforward is preferred. Introduce yourself briefly, including what have you been doing before you started traveling the world, your career background, a little something about where you grew up, your hobbies and what made house sitting an interesting choice to sustain your travels. Remember that most homeowners are not after your skills. They are not looking for a cleaner — they are looking for real people who are outgoing, charismatic and kind to trust their homes with.
Mentioning that you love for pets and having an experience in owning a home (long-term) are plus points. Put yourself in the homeowner’s shoes and focus on the information that is relevant.
Of course, your experience should be the best highlight of your profile. Where have you house sat? How many pets have you taken cared of at the same time? The experience should be authentic and not too staged. Tell them about how you loved being around pets and how you’ve taken cared of a huge house in Melbourne (or any place in the world).
If you don’t have any previous experience, it is advisable to:
- State how many pets you’ve cared for (personally) and for how long.
- Tell your experience in looking after your parents’/relatives house while they were on vacation.
- Share your experience about taking care of your nieces and nephews when your brother needs to ran an errand for the house
Remember, any relevant experience will help! Since you don’t have references yet, these real-life situations can help you in making homeowners believe that you can do it despite having no previous house-sitting background.
High resolution (and good) photos should be up on your profile. Make sure that the images are clear and that they reflect your personality as a person. Do not stage photos like you raking leaves outside your backyard or even cleaning the kitchen. Photos make lasting impressions and if you present your true authentic self, you can surely land a house-sitting assignment anywhere in the world. Show yourself in different situations:
- Put some pictures from your travels. This way, they can see how much you’ve trotted the globe and most likely, it will reflect that you have the ‘outside world’ experience aside from your comfort zone. Home owners love travellers, I tell you that!
- Include photos with pets. (This is a must!)
House sitting applications are never easy but as long as you know how to fill out your profile seriously (not like in a Facebook-ish way), I’m pretty sure you can land on any house-sitting assignments anywhere in the world.
Good luck and may the force be with you! If you’ll need help, just e-mail me anytime and I’ll try my best to help out.
Trisha is one of those people who left their comfortable life to travel the world and learn about life. Her style is to stay in one place she likes for 3 months (or more) to know what it feels like to eat, cook, speak, and sleep in another culture that isn’t hers. She’d like to believe she’s not traditionally traveling but she just chooses to be somewhere else all the time. In no particular order, her favorite cities in the world are Barcelona, Buenos Aires, Hong Kong, Mexico City, and Tel Aviv.
Tuesday 22nd of September 2015
Great tips Trisha!! :-) Travel the world and free lodging! Why not! x thanks for sharing.
The Educational Tourist
Monday 21st of September 2015
What fantastic information! Wish I had thought to do this sort of thing back when I was single and traveling alone! I know you are having some wonderful adventures!
Monday 21st of September 2015
Great tips! This is such an informative post. Thanks for sharing! :)
Monday 21st of September 2015
Some great tips!
Seems to be a theme, as I'm pretty sure Nat & Robson are into the house-sitting scene as well!
Bethaney - Flashpacker Family
Sunday 20th of September 2015
House sitting is a great way to save money on travel. We've only done it for family and friends, not formally through a site like this.