How To Get Your First Housesitting Job

We outline some tips and advice on how to get your first housesitting job and to keep getting daily requests for house sitting.

Your Profile

Update your profile often

When a housesitter profile is updated, that sitter is then listed at the top of the “find house sitters” page.  So update your profile frequently to remain listed near the top of the list.

Look at other profiles

See what other housesitters are writing on their profiles and see if you can make yours better.

“Sitter profile name”

This does not need to be your actual name – this is your tagline.  We use “Mature Friendly Cat/Dog Lovers”.  Work out a one-liner that describes you.

Fill out all the profile fields

Complete as many of the fields as possible.  Ensure you write 3-4 paragraphs in your profile describing you.  Then don’t forget to do your “call to action” – you are selling yourself after all.  It can be something simple like “If you would like to consider us to look after your pets/house, please give us a ring or email”.  Make sure you have selected the correct areas as there is no point receiving requests in Christchurch if you only want a house sit in Auckland.

Availability calendar

If you have any commitments, for example going on holiday, block these dates in your availability calendar.  While not all house owners will check your calendar, you don’t want to waste their time if you have other plans.  (And it can also make you look busy already, before you even have that first house sit.)


Upload some photos.  If you know someone with a pet, take a photo of you and their pet together (ask their permission first).  This can be your main profile photo.  Then add another photo or two of you – perhaps a serious one, and even one of you on holiday.  Again, check what other housesitters have on their profiles.

Gertz and Ken
Gertz and Ken
How To Get Your First House Sit

Once you are happy with your profile, here’s some ideas to help get your first house sit.

Your profile

Again, keep updating your profile to remain near the top of the “find house sitters” list.  This may require you visiting your profile several times a day.  When you have a moment, click on “find house sitters” and see where you are listed.  If you keep dropping down the page, then log in more often and change/update/save your profile.

Approach home owners

Click on “find house sitting jobs”, enter your criteria and search. Click on “new” and this displays the most recently added jobs.  We suggest you initially make contact with at least six jobs.  Email each and introduce yourself.  Your profile is linked to your email so you don’t need to go into excessive detail in your first contact.  At least once a day, redo your search and look for any new listings.  If they suit, send them a message.

Answer emails

On everyone profiles there are five circles which indicates their reply rating.  If they are coloured in, then that sitter has an excellent reply rating.  If the circles are not coloured in, then that sitter doesn’t reply to their first contact email promptly.  Both house sitters and home owners are encouraged to reply to first contact messages within 5 days.  We suggest answering first contact message within 24 hours.

Other Tips and Advice

Visit prospective house sits

When you make contact with a potential house sit, offer to visit them.  This gives the home owner the opportunity to “check you out”.  However, this also gives you the opportunity to visit the house and meet the pets.  You may not want to do every house sit you are offered.  By visiting the home owners you can be shown around, get an idea of any habits or routine that the pets have and find out where you will be sleeping.

Fur children

Home owners generally are more concerned with their pets then their houses.  After all, they are their fur children.  When you visit your potential house sit, enquire about the pets first, before asking if they have wi-fi and Netflix.  It’s always good to ask about routines, for example dinner may be at a certain time or they take the dog for a walk to a particular park.  Most home owners will leave you notes about the pets and house.  If you are only there a short time, this may not be necessary, but we suggest you take your own notes anyway.

Working while house sitting

Some house sitters work while house sitting.  If this is you, make sure it is outlined in your profile.  Some home owners prefer to have a house sitter that is not working as their pets may be used to have company during the day.

Exercising pets

Looking after cats is very easy.  You feed them, pat them and let them sit on your lap.  However, dogs need exercising.  If you are housesitting dogs, make sure you can take them for walks – especially larger dogs.  Go to the $2 shop and buy a bag of doggy bags to put in your handbag or jacket.  While home owners will provide doggy do bags, we like to have back-up in case we leave them behind.

Blaze and Jo
Blaze and Jo

Why would you house sit?

Housesitting is a cost effective way of living and gives you the pleasure of having pets.  It is also a fantastic way of seeing New Zealand.  Even if you don’t want to house sit full time, it can save accommodation costs while on holiday.  There are many housesitting options out there.  Some house sitters prefer the city or country or prefer no pets or lots of pets.  We’re sure you’ll find something to suit you.  So click on the picture below and sign up for your first house sit.

Some of the links on this page are affiliate links and there is no cost to you if you click on any of these links.  However, we may receive a commission should you make a purchase.  This commission helps us create, build and grow our website.  For more information about us, please check out our About Jo and Ken page.

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