Review of Trusted Housesitters from Sitter's Point of View

Hey there, just so you know: Some of the links in this post are affiliate ones. If you make a purchase, I may earn a small commission – at no extra cost to you. It's all part of keeping things genuine and open. Thanks for the support! As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Pet sitting is amazing in so many aspects.  If you have a love of pets and if you have a love of visiting other locations (travel) Trusted Housesitters is for you.  Trusted Housesitters is a platform that matches pet sitters with pet owners for pet-sitting gigs.

I have done some sits on Trusted Housesitters.  It was the way I could travel to a few cities that I wanted to spend time in.  You do not receive payment for your sits, but if you work remotely, or are able to take a few weeks of vacation to do a sit, you will find yourself in some unique locations.

The first step is to put yourself out there for a sit.  I think that is why Trusted Housesitters is the best way to start.  You will be dealing with pet parents, who you also decide if what they need is a good match for you.  

How Does Trusted Housesitters Work?

Trusted Housesitters is a platform that matches pet sitters to pet owners.  Both pay an annual membership fee, and you can give/receive as many sits as you want.

I wrote about getting a sitter for pet owners in Trusted Housesitters: A Pet Owner's Perspective.

For pet sitters, you are not paid but have free accommodation with the pet sit.  It is a way to travel to a destination for a purpose and have a place to stay and pets to take care of. 

There are different pricing plans for Trusted Housesitters membership, starting at $129 for the Basic Membership, $169 for the Standard Membership, and $259 for the Premium Membership.

My Two Favorite Elements of Trusted Housesitters

  1.  The sits are all over the world, meaning more than 140 countries.  If you are looking for a way to go somewhere that you have always wanted to visit, this is the way to do it.  You have a place to stay and a reason for going.  You can get to know the culture by living in it.  
  1. I have access to vet services.  At first glance, this may not seem like a big deal.  I have been on sits when the dog suddenly was very sick.  I needed support, and this feature from Trusted Housesitters gives not only the pet parents but also the pet sitters a sense of relief that if something is wrong, you can get help.

Step-By-Step Sign-up Process  

The process is straightforward and easy to sign up as a sitter.

Choose a plan that works for you. 

Maybe you are starting out and want to try it before you invest a lot, or you do not have the funds for a premium membership.  If you can get the Standard Membership, that is what I recommend for the reason that it includes:

  • Free video calls and online chats with veterinarians when on a sit.  
  • Accident and Third Party Liability Plan so if a pet causes damage or injury to another person, their property, or pets while you are on the sit and this is due to negligence on your part (or so someone thinks), you will be covered up to $1,000,0000

Create a Profile

This is where you need to showcase all your experience and love for pets!  Make sure your profile is compelling to catch the pet owners’ eye.  Put any certifications, qualifications, or anything extra that you may have.

Are you just starting out?

As you won’t have reviews yet on the site, be creative.  Put your LinkedIn and Airbnb reviews AND add two character references.  Put up photos of you and your pets or others to describe your experience.  If you are a newbie and only put up photos, you may have less of a chance to get a sit right away.

Don’t expect to get the best sits on Trusted Housesitters in the beginning.  Plan accordingly, as it takes time to build up reviews and get pet owners to choose your application.  I would start out by trying for sits that are close by to where you are located or shorter sits.  Do a spectacular job and this will help your portfolio of reviews to go for the more competitive sits.

Background Check

This is part of the Trusted Housesitters sign-up process. You need to give them your date of birth and ID number (such as your Social Security number in the States) and consent for a criminal background check.

Now you are ready to find a Pet Sit!

Finding a House Sit

Luckily, Trusted Housesitters' platform is user-friendly.  You can put in the location you are interested in, the dates you are available for, and your pet preferences.  There are filters to narrow down your search based on your specific requirements.

If you are really flexible and open to many kinds of sits, and you just want to get up and going on the site, you can make a broader search.  It all depends on you.

Application Process

Once you find a sit you are interested in, you can apply directly on the website.  This means you submit your information about your experience with pets and sits, as well as any references you have.

Communication with Pet Owners

For the sits you have applied to, the pet owners will reach out to you for a video chat.  This is to get to know you and see if you both are a good match.  Just be yourself on the interview, and if you have any questions about the sit, this is a good time to ask.  The pet owners may tell you their needs and expectations, which, in the end, are good pet care and respect for their homes.  

The pet owners may interview a few people.  Some sits you may get and others maybe not.  Don’t lose hope if it seems hard at first to get a sit.  Sometimes you have to apply to a few before you get one.

Once you get a sit, you will be in constant contact with the pet parents about the logistics of your arrival and the handing off of the keys.  They should leave you exact instructions.  I mentioned this in my post for pet parents. (link here.)

Know what to expect from a sit and what is expected of you, too.

During the Sit

Communication with the pet owners needs to happen BEFORE the sit. Make sure you have written down your responsibilities and the pet's needs.  

Clear Instructions Needed For:

  • Feeding times - how much and when
  • Walks or playtime needed
  • Any medications - what and how to administrate it
  • Any nuances such as if there is more than one pet, which one gets a treat first or if at the same time, etc.
  • Pet rules:  Are they allowed on the couch?  Do they sleep in the bed?
  • How does the pet socialize?
  • What has the pet’s training entailed?  What are the command words?
  • How long can the pet be left alone?  What is the maximum amount of time it should be left alone?  What instructions are there for leaving the pet alone?  Is the pet crated?  
  • Does the pet have a certain blanket or toy?
  • Is the pet scared of something, such as a vacuum or certain noises?

Have Written Down All Contact Numbers, including the pet owner’s number, an emergency number of a contact who will be nearby, such as a friend or family member, and the veterinarian’s number.

Food and Treats.  How much and how many times a day?

All Leashes and Collars are all in order if the pet will be walked?

The Pet Owner’s Yard  Is it escape-proof?

Where are Sufficient Poop Bags and Towels for muddy paws?

Is There a Pet’s Travel Crate in case it is necessary.

Is There a First Aid Kit For the Pet?  Get your own here!

Do the Neighbors Know that there will be a pet sitter?

Daily Photos and Updates are welcome or prefereably not?

Are There Any Other Household Chores that need to be done, such as watering the plants, getting the mail, and putting out the garbage?

In the House

Where Will You Sleep?

Can You Do Laundry?

Can You Eat The Food in the Fridge?

Where are the Cleaning Supplies?

Are there House Rules, such as no shoes in the house?

Are There People Who Will Come By, such as a gardener or a cleaner?

How Do You Work The AC or the Heat?

How Do You Work the TVs and Remotes?

Is There An Alarm Code?

Can there be snags?

Of course!   Here are some support lines to contact Trusted Housesitters if necessary.  

US  +1 (855) 702-2702

UK  +44 808 178 0207

1-877-202-4291. 

support@trustedhousesitters.com.

What I always strive for is that the pet parents come home to happy pets, as they were so well taken care of, and a clean house.  I believe this shows your dedication to the pet sit.

After Your Sit

Leave a Review

Similar to Airbnb, pet sitters and pet owners leave reviews of their experiences.  Make sure you leave a review and be mindful of how to describe situations.

Build Your Reputation

If you are dedicated to always giving your best to the pet and taking care of the house on a sit, when the owner comes back and sees that, you have done your job.  Happy reunions are the best!  If you multiply that with many sits, your reputation will build, and you will have amazing opportunities that could open for you on where you pet sit.

What I have Learned From Pet Sits on Trusted Housesitters

I think Trusted Housesitters is a great way to start pet sitting.  You can use it to meet amazing pets and pet owners and fine-tune your pet-sitting.  It allows you to jumpstart travel or get to know other cities for a low cost as your accommodation is taken care of.  You get the feel of how it is to live in a new town, city, or county.  I believe it is an opportunity for people of all ages to try! 

If you want to learn even more, also check out: How to Use Trusted Housesitters to Kickstart Your Moving, Traveling, or Pet-Sitting Journey.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much money do I need to start pet-sitting on Trusted Housesitters?

The annual membership on Trusted Housesitters ranges between $149 and $229.  So that will take care of your accommodation for the year wherever your sits are.

Apart from that, you need to pay for your transportation to the pet sit, and money for food and expenses while you are on the pet sit.

What is the cancellation process for a sit on Trusted Housesitters?

In the membership plans of Premium Pet Sitter and Premium Pet Parent, there is a Sit Cancelation Plan.  

“In the unlikely event of your pet parent canceling, we'll provide up to $150 compensation per night to cover the cost of alternative accommodation, up to $1500 per sit.

You’re covered up to 30 days annually over as many sits as you like. Or, if you choose to do longer sits, then rest assured you’re still covered for your first three sits each year, even if they span over 30 days.”

Other than that, Trusted Housesitters takes a hands-off approach. Both you, the pet sitter and the pet owners are not allowed to cancel a sit once it has been confirmed unless there are “extraordinary circumstances.”  You will need to look quickly for a new sit in the event that your current one cancels.  If you are not in the Premium Plans, then this will be something you need to talk about with the pet owner, but there may be nothing you can do. 

Is it worth getting the Standard Plan for pet sitters for the insurance?

Yes!  If something happens while you are on a sit, you need to be covered, or it could be very expensive for you.  No one plans on an unfortunate event taking place, but the insurance definitely can give you peace of mind!

Is there such a thing as a Combined Plan for being both a pet parent who needs a sitter and being a sitter?

Yes!  The necessities of worry-free care anytime you go away. Plus, enjoy unlimited global sits.  Check out this great combo!