Is Housesitting Right for You?

Smiling woman wearing red hat --- Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis
27 Sep, 2016

Is Housesitting Right for You?

Housesitting is an exciting way to travel, explore new places, meet new friends, live among the locals, and experience a new lifestyle on a limited budget. Housesitting is a wonderful way to enjoy your holiday without having the expense of renting accommodation.

Most articles and ebooks on housesitting rave about the benefits of housesitting and why you should becomes a housesitter. But before you buy in, ask yourself the question: Is housesitting right for me?

The lifestyle and perks of housesitting are attractive but I can tell you this: housesitting is not for everyone. It’s also not free—in spite of the hype that housesitting is free accommodations with all the comforts of home. Like most things, it has it has downsides and challenges.

You better be prepared to do some work for the ‘free’ accommodation. So if your motivation is ‘free accommodations’ you may be better off finding a budget hotel or hostel. Housesitting is first and foremost a job. It fits a certain personality with a certain outlook on life.

Here are some things about housesitting that will bug you if you’re:

  • — A controlling personality who needs to always be in charge;
  • — A neat freak that wants everything 'just so';
  • — Judgmental of other people’s approach to living;
  • — Anal retentive;
  • — Uncomfortable with change;
  • — Uncomfortable around animals, especially dogs and cats;
  • — Rigid in your daily schedule;
  • — Uncomfortable in new surroundings and people;
  • — Have expectations on how people should live their lives.

If the above describes you, housesitting could be a problem. Think about it this way: you are going to move into someone else's space for a duration of time—anywhere from a few days to a few month—house sitting. You are going to live IN someone else's idea of how they like to live. And even though you are temporarily living in it, it is still THEIR space. You can’t rearrange the furniture to suit your idea of how it should be arranged. You can’t re-organize their things to fit your organized personality. You can’t throw out their food even when the expiry date has passed. You can’t treat their home as if it was your home. Remember this:

  • — It’s their home and environment; not yours.
  • — It’s their stuff; and they arranged it to suit their lifestyle.
  • — They have their way of doing things; your way is not their concern.
  • — They love and treat their pets in the way they see fit; not the way you feel people should raise their animals.

In other words, it’s all about them, NOT you!

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