Since first trying my hand at house sitting in mid-2016, I’ve fallen in love with the concept and now regularly incorporate it into my travel plans. While a hefty smattering of people I meet are doubtful of whether or not house sitting would work for them, they soon come around after I start listing the benefits.

Free Accommodation

That’s right, in a vast majority of cases, you won’t pay anything for your accommodation. In exchange for looking after the homeowner’s pets, house and (sometimes) garden you get to live for free! This gives you more room in your budget to enjoy other parts of your trip while staying in the comfort of a well-loved home.

Back when I was working and house sitting full-time my mates would fly into a jealous rage when I told them I hadn’t had to pay rent in months. That reaction alone was worth it.

Save money on food and incidentals

It’s important to enjoy the culinary diversity of each city that you visit. It’s one of the main reasons people travel! But if you’re looking to save, and know how to throw a pan on the stove, it’s worth setting aside a few meals a week to cook yourself.

Then there are the travel items that aren’t always considered, like pay-as-you-go internet and laundry costs. These expenses are often included as compensation for your services during the sit and can save you loads over time.

I’d also recommend heading out to the local food markets (as opposed to supermarkets) to source your meat, fruit and veg. They’re cheaper, fresher and expose you to the local environment, which conveniently brings me to my next point.

The view of Melbourne from the suburbs

The view of Melbourne from the suburbs

Live like a local

Alongside the obvious ‘food culture drawcard’ there’s the opportunity to see how the other half live, where they socialise and what they do. House sitting is a fantastic way to slow down and absorb the local lifestyle. Many people have travelled to Melbourne. But have they stayed up in trendy Fitzroy, over in newly Maribyrnong or down in homely Glen Huntly? I have. It’s a great insight into the culture of the people away from bustling tourists hubs.

It’s a pet lover’s paradise

Are you travelling but missing your pets back home? House sitting is the perfect antidote. In a vast majority of cases, animals need to be taken care of during your stay, and this is great if you’re a pet-lover like me. Certainly, if you’re a solo traveller and feeling lonely, house sitting is the perfect cure.

House Sitting Benefits

Make mates with humans and pets alike

Because of the nature of the ‘job’, you get to know both homeowners and pets particularly well. In fact, you often create strong bonds with the animals, as well as ongoing friendships with their owners. Plus, if you take good care of their belongings, they will be sure to request your services before their next trip!