I want to be a dog caretaker! That used to be my reply when people asked me what I want to become when I grow up. I still dream of having at least five dogs, but for the last four years, my husband and I have been travelling almost non-stop. You need to be settled to get pets, as they deserve your time, attention and love, they are basically family members. But what if there is a way to travel and still connect with the animals you love so much? Here is our TrustedHousesitters review which enables travellers to save money, look after pets and also help by travelling more sustainable. Not to mention the perks of making real connections with people who live in the destinations you wish to visit.
House sitting is a real travel trend for people all around the world. With an age requirement of 21+, the house and pet sitting market is open for all sort of travellers, with different interests. You just need to love animals, be able to care for them and cover your own transportation. The rest? Just a whole lot of fun.
Interested? Let us tell you our story in this comprehensive TrustedHousesitters review. We even included tips on how to set up your profile and get started as soon as possible. You can sign up and create your profile here.
TrustedHousesitters Honest Review (and how to have a successful profile) - Contents
Our TrustedHousesitters Review
The first time we decided to create a profile on TrustedHousesitters was a couple of years back. We just finished pet sitting for a friend and got hooked. Loved walking their dog, really enjoyed the time spent together and this only reiterated how much we want to have pets.
But having pets when we travel two weeks out of four would mean not giving our furry friends the attention they deserve. So in a way, until we settle down we know we need to postpone the dream. But it doesn't mean we can't still enjoy the company of animals...while travelling. That's when we started looking into TrustedHousesitters. We know that pet sitting is usually done as an online affair. The concept is really simple: you create a profile, you peruse the pet sitting possibilities, you apply, connect with a local and confirm your ability to commit. There is usually no money exchange in this.
The sitter gets a place to stay in exchange for looking after the house and pets. There are some incredible houses in stunning locations too, so TrustedHousesitters will offer you the possibility to travel to some dreamy destinations.
Our first ever pet sit was in New Zealand. We connected with a lovely couple who had two dogs in need of two walks a day. They were located in Picton and wanted us to visit for two weeks. In exchange, we had the whole house to ourselves and got access to their spare car in case we wanted to take the dogs on a longer hike. I mean how is this not living the travel dream? Long hikes with two incredible dogs, in New Zealand, while having free accommodation.
To cleverly set up your travel plans, create an itinerary for yourself. Start with your dream destination, then try and aim for the next nearby location. So if you start in New Zealand, maybe continue in Australia, then other places in Asia and so on. This way your air travel will work out cheaper, especially if you need to make quick decisions. But you do need flexibility and sometimes must be able to do things in a spontaneous way.
So did we enjoy our first pet sitting with TrustedHousesitters? Yes, we did. Everything went smooth and as expected. But in order for this to happen to you too, you need to ensure you are fully aware of a few things before setting up your profile and making a commitment. We will cover all of it in this article. Oh, and if you are wondering, rest assured that this TrustedHousesitters review is 100% our honest opinion.
Why use TrustedHousesitters
TrustedHousesitters is the largest house sitting website online. This is very important because it means most pet owners will pick this site for a listing when they need to go on holiday. That's very good news for you because it means you will have more opportunities to pick from. It also means that TrustedHousesitters will have availability in most countries in the world. So if you want to start local, you can. If you want to search for an amazing house sitting somewhere more exotic, there will be options there too.
However, it's worth noting that English speaking nations tend to have the most listings. That's great if you fancy spending a week in a cottage in England, relax by the beach in Australia, hike through the ferns of New Zealand before hitting the remote nature areas of Canada.
TrustedHousesitters is easy to use and have a very user-friendly interface. Everything was very well thought through, clearly taking into account the possibility that the site will be used by people from various backgrounds and in different age brackets.
What we also love about TrustedHousesitters is that you can pick the type of animal you want to look after. We are dog people so naturally, we would only love to look after dogs. But we know people who love to mix it up and that's perfect. You will find horses, fish and even pet rabbits. The world is your oysters, so make sure you pick what interests you the most.
Are there any downsides to using TrustedHousesitters? Just a little one, in our opinion. Because it is the biggest pet and house sitting website, it also means that you will have the most competition. So it's imperative that your profile is excellent and really stands out from the crowd!
Setting up the perfect profile on TrustedHousesitters
TrustedHousesitters is a matchmaking site so make sure you attract the people that matter to you. Write everything in a candid, personalised way so people can trust you and ensure you are the perfect sitter for their pet. Think of your profile as a job application or CV.
Don't just tell people how reliable you are, back up your statements with pictures and letters of recommendations. Small details will not go unnoticed.
Write a catchy headline
A strong headline needs to be well balanced between showing who you are and why you are going to be the perfect match for the house and pet sitting. Be professional and avoid goofiness. People want to get someone who they consider mature and responsible. If you are a single professional looking to pet sit, mention it in the title. Are you travelling as a couple? Say that you are a Reliable, experience, animal-loving couple etc
Avoid writing about your personal needs like you are in search of free stays or need a lot of quiet time for your novel retreat. Remember that people want YOU because you are willing to help them with their pet. They don't wish to give you free accommodation for your own projects.
Imagine you are a homeowner. Would you like to see written there? Who would you trust?
TrustedHousesitters Profile Intro
This is where you want to capture someone's attention so it's your time to shine. Think of it as a new book you pick up from the store. You know when you start reading the first few paragraphs? Did it catch your imagination? You'll buy the book. It doesn't matter how good, reliable and trustworthy you are. If your introduction is not good enough, nobody will bother reading your story.
It's crucial that you write something catchy and to the point. Explain who you are and why you are travelling. Tell a little about your lifestyle and maybe your business too. We work from home and we always state that in our introduction as homeowner love this for example. This shows that you can stay at home with their pets and really look after them.
Explain any previous house or pet sitting experience. Did you live abroad before? New to TrustedHousesitters? Talk about your previous pet sitting experience. Maybe you had pets of your own? Looked after your friend's pets while they were away? Walked the neighbour's dog several times a month? Every little experience counts.
Don't just state that you love animals, make people understand you are an experienced caretaker.
Why did you decide to create a TrustedHousesitters profile?
Start by talking about your insatiable appetite for life and travel. Mention your love for pets and your desire to one day have your own animals. Or maybe explain why your current lifestyle doesn't allow for your own pets and these experiences enable you to still offer unconditional love to animals.
As previously mentioned you should describe your previous experience in detail. Describe everything about the pets you looked after including the specific breeds, rescue pets or even looking after pets which require medication. Don't write everything factual. Write these stories from the heart.
DO (be personal): "Lisa was a gorgeous pure vizsla originated from Budapest. She required a daily injection which we administered at 10 am every morning. We took her out for her routine morning and afternoon walk. She loved homemade food so we made sure to give her three meals a day. We followed the precise recipes the owner left us and you could tell Lisa was settling in with us just fine. She needed loves and cuddles and we took daily pictures with her to send them to the owner, for peace of mind...and also for us to create long-lasting memories."
DO NOT (be robotic and cold): "We looked after a vizsla who needed daily medication and homemade food. We followed all instructions and the pet sitting went great".
References are crucial and most homeowners will like to read them before deciding to entrust you with their home and pets. And that's understandable. If you used TrustedHousesitters before, then you will have access to a reference request. This is a good way to obtain honest references which you cannot fix yourself.
If you never used a site like TrustedHousesitters, then ask your landlord for a reference. Talk to previous Airbnb hosts who hosted you in their home. Also, ask your employer for a reference to showcase how reliable you are. If you work with animals, ask for related references and an explicit review on why you are good with pets. If you ever did a house sitting or pet sitting for a friend, ask them for an objective letter of recommendations with as many details as possible on why you are so good with pets.
Your profile picture has to be lovely. Smile, be with other pets in the picture if possible. Put up a picture from your previous house sitting, or just a cuddly photo from your travels. Just be happy and smile. Don't look serious or grumpy. You need to be approachable and trustworthy.
You know those stock photos with old couples hugging on a bench? Be that person! Our brains relate to happy people who smile and appear to be caring.
Your photos should be high resolution and make sure you stay in focus. Do you have social media profiles like Instagram? Mention this, so homeowners can ask for the link. Post lots of pictures from your travels and showcase your previous travel and pet sitting experience.
Profile complete, now what?
Your profile is complete and you feel confident and ready to apply! Peruse the site and find the applications most suitable to your needs. When applying to each individual pet sit, remember that what you write should act as a cover letter. You shouldn't copy-paste canned answers!
Be personal, relatable and show that you read the posting correctly and to the end. Always use the name of the pets written in the posting if possible. Explain why you are the best person to look after the pet.
ASK QUESTIONS! Be relatable and ask questions. How many times a day do they need to be taken out? How many meals a day? Is there a vet nearby in case there is an emergency or will I need a car? Will I be able to reach you during your travels if there is a specific need? Do they need any medication or have a specific requirement. etc
Asking questions and reiterating what the homeowner wrote in the ad, shows that you read, are attentive to the smallest details and can be trusted.
Do we recommend TrustedHousesitters?
TrustedHousesitters enables us to look after pets while not having our own for now. It's an amazing job which feels good. It's proven that pets help us tremendously with stress release so what's not to love? You can travel the world, stay in some amazing accommodations and cuddle with pets.
And while yes, this is the dream way of travelling, be prepared for the times when you have to say goodbye. Those moments are hard, but looking back, you would have made incredible memories.
We wholeheartedly recommend TrustedHousesitters as a more sustainable way to travel. We also believe in the power of doing good and helping others. We are grateful that TrustedHousesitters is a great space where people can find one another and create long-lasting connections.
Interested? Sign up to TrustedHousesitters today!