Looking after someone else’s pets and home may seem pretty straightforward and easy. Truth is, commitment is an important factor of being a successful house sitter. Being a pet lover isn’t really enough to get the job done properly. Whether you’re house sitting for the first time or have been doing it for a while, you need to treat every house sit with the utmost professionalism and respect. We’ve listed some house sitting do’s and dont’s that may help.
What Good House Sitters Do
Know and respect house rules – You will stay in someone else’s house so the first thing to ask is what the owner’s house rules are, and stick to them. Before starting, ask the owners if the pets are allowed to sleep in the bed, are you allowed to crank up the air conditioning, are you allowed to bring your own pet to house sit with you, etc. It would also help if you have a check list you can follow every day so you won’t forget any of the house rules.
Ask for the Wi-Fi password – Yes, this is an important part of the job. You need to stay connected and be able to contact the owners for updates on their pets. Do not however, use their internet to download anything for your personal use.
Ask for emergency contact numbers – Anything can happen to pets while you’re looking after them. Make sure that you ask the owners for contact numbers of their vet, a family member or a friend that you can get in touch with during emergencies.
Replace anything you have used/eaten – Unless the owners specifically said that you can help yourself with stuff in their fridge or pantry, make sure that you replace food items that you consumed during your stay.
Leave the owners with something to remember you by – A small welcome gift like a card, flowers or cupcakes is a great welcome home gift to the owners. It would also leave them with a good impression and this helps a lot in your future house sitting applications.
What Good House Sitters Don’t Do
Invading the owners privacy – If the owners say that you are not allowed to enter their bedroom, you must respect their privacy. Always respect the owners’ personal belongings and spaces.
Never clean up after yourself – Make sure that you tidy up before leaving the house, or before the owner arrives. By taking the time to tidy up the house, and leaving with a thank you note or a small welcome home gift, you leave the owners with a very good impression.
Change the house’s decorations – Okay, so you may not like the owners’ taste in decor but again, you’re a guest. Do not try to be creative with the interior design of their house and keep everything the way the owners left it.
Invite friends over – Never, ever take advantage of the trust the owners gave you. Do not invite anybody else to stay with you during your house sit. And no, you should not have a house party because it’s not your house.
Neglecting duties you agreed to do – This is where a checklist of your daily responsibilities is helpful. If you agreed to water the plants every morning; take the dog for walks twice a day; do a little gardening, etc. make sure that everything is done at the end of the day.