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Why You Should Become a Housesitter!

Recently we discovered an amazing concept: housesitting! Housesitting means taking care of someone’s house, and often their pet(s) while the homeowner is away on, for example, a business trip or vacation. For them, it is a better solution than to pay for expensive kennels. Their house is being maintained and their pets stay in their natural environment. Housesitting is not only a win situation for the house owner; it is a win for housesitters as well! As a housesitter, you get to stay in a house for free, anywhere in the world! While traveling this means having time to take a rest, and perfect when you are (thinking about becoming) a digital nomad!

When we are writing this blog, we are housesitting in Penang, Malaysia, for five weeks. We look after the cutest dog named Tiger. In the meanwhile, we have plenty of time to fully explore this beautiful island. We have a car and motorbike at our disposal and we have a real home for a while, on the other side of the world! Housesitting is the perfect solution for us: a combination of traveling, blogging having a home, and taking care of pets! Plus it is great for traveling on a budget.

Enthusiast already? Read the following reasons why you should housesit. We challenge you to NOT want to housesit afterward!


Having a home away from home

Traveling place-to-place all of the time, packing your bags multiple times a week, it can be tiring. No matter how homey your hotel, hostel, or Couchsurfing place is, it will never feel like your own home or your own space. It allows you to slow the pace and to reload. In addition, this is a great option for digital nomads: housesitting allows you to have time and an office to work from. Right now, we have a home on the other side of the world; we have an entire house to ourselves! We can do our laundry whenever we want, cook for ourselves, and have a pet that is cuddling us so much. In addition, we have the time to blog, edit photos, and videos!

Excited to start yet? Learn how to become the perfect housesitter!

Caring for a pet

Often housesitting means taking care of a pet as well as the house. Sometimes even multiple animals! We love pets and we really miss our cat, Elsa. A pet is not usually the best travel buddy, but with housesitting you have your own pet! And pets are so much fun. Our housesit-dog Tiger is the cutest. For us, a pet is what makes the ultimate home! And when we take him to the beach he is so excited and that makes us his most favorite humans.

Discovering new areas

When you stay in one place for a while you can explore so many things. Way more than when you visit as a tourist! In addition, you see places you would never have visited otherwise. Right now we housesit in the South of Penang: an area that would’ve bypassed if we were just traveling! Not only can you explore one place to the fullest, but you can also revisit the places you like so much. We love to come back to that one coffee shop!

Living like a local

We like to take our time while traveling and to really take in the culture. While housesitting you actually live IN the culture. Living somewhere gives you the best opportunity to live and feel like a local. And to meet other locals! Since we have arrived in Penang we go to this Saturday night market every week, and now people actually recognize us. We go to the same vegetable stall, we get the most delicious Malaysian pancakes with the same guy and we have a small chat!

Fitting YOUR travel!

There is a housesit for everyone! Offers include a housesit for a few days, weeks, or months! For short-term travelers, a few days is a great option to see a new destination for a bit, and for long-term travelers or digital nomads, a longer period of time suits their schedule. And it is not only for backpackers; it is a great option for a family holiday, retirement travel, or simply as an alternative vacation!


Becoming a housesitter

There are many different housesitting websites; it can be difficult to choose one. Naturally, we started looking for the cheapest option. But as we continued our research, it became clear TrustedHousesitters was the best fit for us. Many other housesitters recommend this platform and it is the largest housesitting platform worldwide. With more opportunities in parts of the world like Asia, this is the best fit for us. It is also the fastest growing platform!

To join TrustedHousesitters you need to pay a membership fee. Before subscribing we thought it’s expensive: $119 a year! We are on a budget! And look at Couchsurfing: it is free! But we thought about it, it is not expensive at all. We have a FREE house for five weeks. How much rent would you normally pay for five weeks? Or how much would you pay for hostels? With only our five weeks of housesitting it is already worth the money. And this will not be our only housesit this year! In addition: if you are serious about this, paying this fee also shows dedication and shows a house owner you are really going for it!

Have we made you enthusiastic about housesitting as well? In that case, you might want to check our article on how to become a housesitter!

How to Become The Perfect House-sitter | Once Upon A Journey

Thursday 4th of October 2018

[…] heard about it sooner, which is why we want to tell you ALL about it! After reading our article Why you should become a house-sitter you probably think: how do I become one RIGHT […]

Travel Journal California: San Francisco, San Diego & Los Angeles

Monday 30th of April 2018

[…] are going to housesit again!! We were really looking forward to having our ‘own’ place again. Nathalie stays for two nights at our housesit home. On the 30th of March, it’s […]

Rach and Chris

Tuesday 16th of January 2018

What a great article! It is always a pleasure to read about fellow house sitters that are living the dream and sharing the adventure with others! What has been your favorite location to house sit in?

Roxanne & Maartje

Sunday 18th of February 2018

Hi Rach and Chris!! We only have done two housesit so far actually! We're looking forward to our third in Mexico in April. But housesitting on Penang was AMAZING!

Travel Journal Malaysia: housesitting on Penang | Once Upon A Journey

Monday 20th of November 2017

[…] Curious about housesitting? Let us convince you! We wrote you all the reasons why you should become a housesitter. Read it here. […]


Monday 9th of October 2017

Wij waren al van plan om ons hier in te verdiepen en zijn na het lezen van jullie blog alleen maar enthousiaster geworden! We hebben net jullie linkje gebruikt voor die 5 dagen met informatie. ;-) We zijn eigenlijk ook wel benieuwd of jullie gemakkelijk aan een adres zijn gekomen.

Maartje Hensen

Friday 13th of October 2017

Wij zijn verrassend snel aan een adres gekomen ja! We stonden er verbaasd van haha. De truc is (denken we): snel reageren en je profiel uitgebreid invullen!

Once Upon a Journey