How a retired couple saved $30,000 on hotel costs by house & pet sitting globally

By Nicola Foulstone | Retirement

Dan and Brenda's first sit in Australia was on the coast

Tell us about your first ever house sit together? 
Our first house/pet sit together when we retired was in a small community in Kentucky. It was for a doctor and his family who lived on 5 acres with an in ground pool. We took care of their two boxers, Elvis and Cocoa. Dan enjoyed mowing the yard with the tractor and we both enjoyed taking the dogs for walks every day. We are both used to taking care of spas and pools so that was no problem at all.

Snug as a bug!

What advice would you give to others who are thinking about becoming house sitters?
The opportunities are endless! You have to treat other people's property and their beloved pets just as if they were your own. We always like to leave an added touch wherever we go. It is always nice when the family gets back home that they have a nice home-cooked meal ready.

Brenda makes a comfy seat for one of her charges

Where was your favourite destination and why?
Burnett Heads Australia has been our favorite thus far due to the simple fact that we enjoy hiking, biking and the ocean. All three of these were within two blocks of the house. So we were able to enjoy ourselves during the day without being away from the home for long periods of time. Sitting on the front porch with our "kitty" Vincent and watching the beautiful sunset each evening together listening to our canary "Yellow Bird" sing us a tune from her cage, while kangaroo families meandered in the field across the street, was such an added bonus.

What has been your highlight of house sitting so far?
Meeting people in our everyday activities who are from all over the globe. We have been invited to numerous homes for holidays, dinners, etc. We find it so enjoyable to meet people from all over the world, enjoying their accents, listening to the way they do things in life and all about their travels.

Cuddle time

What do your friends and family think of you house sitting?
They are all the time telling us they live vicariously through our pictures and our travels.

How much do you think you would have spent on accommodation / hotels in the last year if you hadn't been house/pet sitting?
We have been traveling for the last nine months overseas with an average of $100 a night on hotels, the cost would be phenomenal. Not to mention the cost of renting a car. For this amount of time, we would estimate a staggering $30,000 and we believe this is on the low side.

Brendas loves having pet companions on her travels

Brendas loves having pet companions on her travels

Where are you now and where are you off to next?
We are currently on the North Island of New Zealand in the town of Kerkeri, which is in the Bay of Islands. For the next ten weeks, we have mountains on one side of us and the Pacific ocean on the other side, all within a few minutes drive. Next, we are headed to the coastal town Barwon Heads outside of Melbourne Australia for six weeks.

What's the best thing about your lifestyle?
The casual daily approach to what needs to be done. Relax and enjoy the environment you're in at the time, whether it be a rain forest or a oceanfront property. All while having animals to love and enjoy.

How easy do you find it to use and would you recommend the site?
We have found it very easy to use the site, and yes we would recommend it to others,  you can enjoy such a wonderful lifestyle!

Long coastal walks are a favourite activity

Many thanks to Dan and Brenda from Memphis, Tennessee- if you'd like to share your adventures please email

1 Response to "How a retired couple saved $30,000 on hotel costs by house & pet sitting globally"

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  1. Nancy Smith says:
    May 30, 2015, 3:54 a.m.

    Dan and Brenda houses at for us in Burnett Heads. They are awesome housesitters! I could not recommend them enough!!!! We are currently looking for housesitters agin, through this site, unfortunately Dan and Brenda are booked solid!


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