House sitting can come with many benefits, including payment and opportunities for travel, but does require some unique training. In order to become a house sitter, a person must gain necessary training in home care, attend to legal requirements, learn the basics of self-employment and contract law, and obtain good references. It may also help to join a house sitting advertisement website, in order to make contacts and find jobs throughout the world.
Though training may not be required to become a house sitter, it can help someone stand out from the pack. Consider finding a local trade school and taking basic lessons in housekeeping and hospitality. Look for classes and seminars at gardening centers to help ensure that a homeowner does not return to dead hydrangeas, and seek out a basic veterinary medicine or animal training course to improve pet sitting skills. Most classes in these subjects are inexpensive, and can be completed in a few weekends or a semester at most. Having verifiable training can help potential employers feel safer, and may help a new worker become a house sitter quickly.
Some regions have legal requirements related to house sitting and other self-employment positions. If a person wants to become a house sitter for monetary gain, he or she may need to obtain a business license, submit to a background check, and undergo some certification procedures. Those who prefer to exchange house sitting duties for the mere opportunity to stay in a nice home or travel to a new place may be able to avoid legal issues, but it is important to check out any possible requirements before accepting a house sitting position.
It may help to study regional contract laws before beginning a house sitting career. Crafting a basic contract agreement between the homeowner and house sitter can help detail exact responsibilities, as well as reduce the chance of lawsuits in the event that a disagreement arises. Reading guides to establishing a small business can also be useful, as they can answer important questions about advertising and marketing, legal concerns, accounting methods, and tax laws.
Very few homeowners are willing to hire a house sitter without excellent references. Asking friends or family to write reviews or offer references in exchange for free house sitting is a good way to get started in the business. After each professional house sitting job, ask clients to provide a review or inquire as if they are willing to be used as a reference for future employers. For house sitters with a website or advertisement page, consider adding excerpts of positive reviews.
Trying to become a house sitter can be furthered by joining a house sitting website. These sites allow house sitters to advertise their services and skills, while prospective clients can peruse listings for a good match. Joining a website can increase the range of job opportunities tremendously, and can be an excellent way to incorporate work with travel to new locations. When contracting with clients over the Internet, it is important to follow basic safety precautions and ask for references, contact information, and other data that could reveal a possible scam. Though Internet advertising can bring wonderful opportunities, it is vitally important to ensure personal safety when accepting jobs.