If you’re keen to travel, if you’re undaunted by navigating around different countries and cultures and if you’ve got a great profile that focusses on all the positives you can bring to a housesit, then why not house sit globally?
Finding international house-sits is as easy as a quick search online, but there are a couple of things we’d really recommend you think about before you start your search. We learned all this by going in hell-for-leather when we started, getting membership to every site we could find and then realising that we could have saved ourselves a lot of stress and money if we’d researched the best ones first.
If you’ve read anything else on this site, you’ll know how much importance we place on respecting your hosts’ homes and pets, but our big focus here is your comfort and safety when internationally house-sitting.
The key considerations we have when investing in a membership to one or more housesitting sites are as follows:
The quality and location of the sits on offer. Here, we’re talking about hosts that love and care for their animals, who respect your role as a sitter and who will be conscientious about being honest about their pet’s medical conditions, their little foibles, their home’s quirks and in leaving their home in good order.
Is the site set out in a way that will best showcase your profile and will you be searchable by potential house sits?
Is the site set out in a way that encourages owners to give as many details as possible about the sit? Including a facility for leaving pictures, descriptions of their pets, their home and the area they live in?
Does the site give home owners guidelines in how they should behave before, during and after the sit?
Is there a 24 hour helpline or chatline that sitters can use in the case of an emergency. (I.e. arriving to a sit to find it’s not as represented, there are safety concerns at the property or that the animals are unwell in a way that hasn’t been described by the owner?
With this in mind, we’ve settled on two main sites that we trust and use frequently:
We love Trustedhousesitters because the range of sits are fantastic, the site’s layout and review system for hosts and sitters encourages honesty and it really makes it easy to search potential sits and to communicate with home owners. The main plusses for us, however are the fact that hosts have to pay to sign up to the site too, meaning that the quality of the sits appears to be overall better. The main locations for sits through the site tend to be the UK, US, Australia, Europe with a smattering of, New Zealand, Central and South East Asia and the odd sit in South America. You can nominate to receive notifications of sits in the area you like through the app or just set up the twice daily emails.
If you follow our link, you’ll get 25% off a year’s membership, but that’s not why we put them first on the list. It’s because they’re the main guys we use and since we’ve began our journey, we’ve booked sits all over the world from Tuscany to Crete to Chiang Mai to Cambridge in the UK.
Nomador is great but it would help potential sitters a bunch if they know some French. We’ve found Nomador is particularly good for finding sits in France, Germany and the Caribbean with a smattering of other countries on offered in their daily emails.
Other Sites We Have Experience With
Mindmyhouse.com: We’ve used these guys and they have some great sits on offer but we’d encourage a little more cautiousness if you sign up to them. Home owners don’t have to pay for a membership and the site doesn’t hold home owners to be as accountable to under-representing themselves, their home or their pets.
Worldwidehousesitters.com: There is a shortage of sits on this site and although their layout looks promising, the home owners who have found us through this site have contacted us via our website rather than signing up, which is telling us they’re charging too much or their interface isn’t all that user friendly.
Aussiehousesitters.com: You could sit all-year around in Australia using this site. It’s got a great search function and a lot of Australian home-owners use it. Our main concern with it is that most home owners frequently don’t post pictures of their homes. There’s also not a lot of room for them to provide thorough details of their homes and pets and there’s little-if-no security for the sitter as far as security checks etc. If you’re going to use this site, we’d encourage you to check out our safety tips first.
The Housesitting Company: You could sit all-year around in New Zealand using this site but we’d strongly encourage you to think first before you sign up. Why? This company charges home-owners a lot for your services, while also charging you for membership. And when we say a lot, we mean a lot. When we signed up to the site, this wasn’t clear. We don’t feel this fits with the spirit of housesitting, which is a reciprocally free agreement between sitter and home owner.
The key thing is that no matter which house-sitting site you use, we recommend you use one. Unless you know the home-owner personally, your safety is a priority and at the very least, using a house-sitting site gives you a minimum of identity verification and the breathing room to really research your sit.