House Sitter Guidelines for Happy House Sitting Stays

Kelly Jones

Please read these house sitter guidelines carefully. They will help to ensure that all TrustedHousesitters members enjoy seamless and happy house sits.

When Creating Your Profile

  • Add high quality photos that show owners your considerate, caring nature, and your love of animals
  • Include a profile introduction that outlines your motivations to house and pet sit, and gives insight into the personality traits which make you a great sitter. Then complete the remaining sections of your profile giving further information about the skills and experience you feel will be of benefit to you when house and pet sitting
  • Achieve your Basic Trust Badge which involves verifying your email address and telephone number, and obtaining an external character reference from a landlord, employer, or someone you have previously house sat for
  • Consider achieving your Standard and Enhanced Trust Badges to boost your trust profile - Find out more about our Trust & Safety features by clicking here

When Applying for a House Sit

  • Be flexible! Consider local sits when you first start out and offer to meet the owner in person as this will give you an instant advantage over other applicants. It is also a great way to obtain your first review
  • Apply for a range of house sitting stays in different locations and during a range of dates. You’ll be amazed at how many opportunities there are to choose from
  • Be proactive! Check your daily alerts for the latest house sits and consider the number of applications already received prior to sending your own (this can be seen on every listing); your chances of success are increased when applying to sits with fewer applicants
  • Personalise every message you send, reference the specifics of the listing, and highlight why the owner should consider your application. Perhaps you have lived in a similar environment or have relevant pet care experience?

Securing a House Sit

  • Gather as much information as possible regarding the nature of the home, pets, and location to ensure you are equipped to fulfil the house sit successfully. Don't be afraid to ask lots of questions! Make sure the owner confirms how many pets you will be looking after, what their habits are, whether they are a rescue or have any behavioural issues
  • Agree all of the responsibilities you will be expected to take on in advance of accepting the sit. Make sure you are comfortable with all aspects of property maintenance, pet care, and any financial commitments you are required to make. For example, if you don't like exotic pets make sure you don't go on a sit where you could be looking after an Iguana
  • Ensure you have all the information you need to maintain the owner’s home and garden, as well as their beloved pet’s daily routine and need for companionship
  • Once you have been confirmed as a sitter you will see the confirmed sit appear on your dashboard. At this point you can encourage the owner to complete their Welcome Guide which will then be accessible via your dashboard throughout the sit. We recommend that you also liaise with them to agree terms of a House Sitting Agreement Form which both parties can sign found on your dashboard.
  • Meet the owner and their pets, either in person, via Skype or FaceTime. Its is also good to ask for a virtual tour of the apartment or house and garden
  • Before you are confirmed on a sit, please make sure you ask whether the pet(s) you will be looking after have any special needs or any behavioural issues. For example, does a cat need to be left in the kitchen overnight so that it will use the litter tray; or, is a dog aggressive towards other dogs when on the lead?
  • When agreeing your arrival and departure dates with the owner, allow extra time for unforeseen circumstances such as delayed flights
  • We recommend that you do not agree to a house sitting assignment if you are not sure that you can fulfil all the home owners requirements or if you don't feel confident about a particular sit
  • Once you have agreed to sit for an owner you should not cancel, unless under exceptional circumstances such as a serious illness or family bereavement. As such, do not enter into discussion with owners who have listed sits with overlapping dates or with requirements which you are unable to fulfil or feel uncomfortable taking on
  • Find out how often the owner would like to hear from you during your stay and in what form they would prefer to receive updates; email, photos, skype call etc

During Your House Sit

  • Stay in touch with the owner. Sharing news about their home and pets will help to maintain a positive relationship
  • Communicate clearly, fairly, and respectfully at all times and keep them informed of any developments back home
  • Love and care for all pets by protecting their health, cleanliness, comfort, safety, and happiness, and keep the owner updated on their wellbeing. If you have any concerns about the pet's health, contact the animal’s registered vet or call the TrustedHousesitters 24 hour Vet Helpline found in your dashboard
  • Respect the trust an owner places in you. Protect the confidentiality and privacy of their home and don’t share any information or images that might compromise this position of trust
  • Keep the owner’s property maintained to a high standard and inform them as soon as possible if any unforeseen damage occurs
  • Do not invite anyone else into the owner's home without prior permission from the owner. If this has been agreed, remember that your guests respect the home and pet(s) that you are caring for and that you are responsible for your guest(s) good behaviour and for ensuring that they behaving in accordance with your agreement with the homeowner.
  • Respect any differences in culture, lifestyle, or religion that you experience whilst house sitting. Be mindful of local laws and customs and be warm, open, and friendly to the owner’s friends and neighbours
  • Under no circumstances should you leave the sit without first speaking with the owner and ensuring adequate arrangements are in place to care for their pets and home
  • Should you cancel or change the arrangement you have made, other than in exceptional circumstances such as a serious illness, family bereavement or a valid concern for your personal safety, you will be in breach of our Code of Conduct and we will suspend your membership whilst we review the circumstances. We have 24/7 Member Support Services, so please call or message us if you need to discuss leaving a sit or changing arrangements

As Your House Sit Comes to an End

  • Prepare for the owner’s arrival home by ensuring the property is clean and tidy and their pets are happy and relaxed. Some sitters choose to prepare a meal or stock the fridge with a few basics as a token of thanks for a wonderful stay
  • Provide a comprehensive handover and give an update on the status of anything that may have changed whilst they’ve been away
  • Ensure that any outstanding financial responsibilities that were agreed have been met. Keep receipts from agreed purchases for the home and pets so that you can be reimbursed

After You Complete Your House Sit

  • Leave the owner fair, factual, and balanced feedback on your experience as a whole. This will help other sitters decide whether or not the sit is the right opportunity for them
  • Apply for your next House Sit!!!

Ready to get started?

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