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Silver Conversationalist
Posts: 44
Registered: ‎11-19-2014

Re: Share Your Travel Saving Tips

Message 1 of 23 (5,600 Views)

retiredtraveler wrote:

@kl1259

 

How do you handle liability insurance? It would be easy to be accused of theft, harm to pets, harm to house, etc. Do you retain insurance that would pay for a house burning down while you stayed there, or an accident where something of great value broke, or something of great value went missing?


We have completed 25 house/pet sits in the past 4 years.  Whether in the US, Spain, Scotland, Greece, London, Australia, New Zealand, we have met gracious, wonderful people who aren’t of the mind frame to “easily accuse” their pet/house sitters of theft or harming their pets and/or home. In fact, just the opposite.  The home/pet owners are very, very appreciative that someone is lovingly watching their home and their beloved pets. 

 

The homeowners have trusted us to pick up and, sometimes upon request, open their mail.  Trusted us to take their pets to the vet when ill.  Trusted us to drive their cars for months while we’re on an international house sit.  Trusted us while they are on safari in South Africa or on an Antarctica expedition to maintain the security of their home.  Trusted us to keep their pools and irrigation systems working.  Trusted us to maintain their heirloom plants.

 

We’re cared for homes with million dollar art collections, precious Olympic memorabilia, custom furniture and one home filled with countless antique crystal figurines. 

 

What we’re saying is that it works when both parties approach this not from what could go wrong, but from the perspective of how caring/trusting parties on both sides can benefit.  Some of the pet sitting websites we are members of state that from their research, UNPAID house sitters are usually covered under the homeowners’ insurance policy, although they suggest contacting your insurance carrier for clarification.  In contrast, a PAID pet sitter would likely have their own business/liability insurance.

 

On a few pet sits when we first arrived and noticed something “of great value” we asked the homeowners to move the item(s) out of harms way.  We’d hate to be responsible if we or the dogs knocked over a shelf and a beautiful Lladro figurine broke.  Or, if we notice a cracked tile or a torn screen, we point that out prior to the homeowner’s departure. 

 

On a few sits, the homeowners, one who was a CPA and one in healthcare, locked their offices due to client confidentiality which we totally understand.

 

It’s likely that in the thousands and thousands and thousands of sits that have been completed over the years since these types of websites were established there have been a few bad apples, like in any venture.  But in the far majority of sits, it’s a win/win which attests to why this concept of free in-home pet sitting is continuing to grow in popularity.

 

Having said that, we do carry a liability policy, but we had that in place even before we started doing free in-home pet sitting. 

 

Trusted Social Butterfly
Posts: 6,865
Registered: ‎02-14-2008

Re: Share Your Travel Saving Tips

Message 2 of 23 (5,645 Views)

@kl1259

 

How do you handle liability insurance? It would be easy to be accused of theft, harm to pets, harm to house, etc. Do you retain insurance that would pay for a house burning down while you stayed there, or an accident where something of great value broke, or something of great value went missing?


“The world is a book. Those who do not travel read only one page.”
Silver Conversationalist
Posts: 44
Registered: ‎11-19-2014

Re: Share Your Travel Saving Tips

Message 3 of 23 (5,787 Views)

bbkingree6650 wrote:
How does one find the need for house/ pet sitting in this manner? I have been a professional pet sitter 14 plus years. This would be an awesome way for my husband and I to transition into our desire for more travel.

Yes, it would be easy for you to transition given all of your years of pet sitting and great references.  We have heard from homeowners/pet owners that they sometimes get over 100 applicants in 24 hours, so they can select those with the greatest experience.  We offer tips on how to get started.  Be sure to see the tab "Pet/House sitting tips" where we share 12 tips.  See:  www.traveltheworldpetsitting.com

 

Just a reminder; we don't get paid.  We get free accommodations around the world in exchange for pet/house sitting.

 

Good luck and please post back on this AARP site to let us know where you have landed pet sits.

Info Seeker
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎07-27-2016

Re: Share Your Travel Saving Tips

Message 4 of 23 (5,796 Views)
How does one find the need for house/ pet sitting in this manner? I have been a professional pet sitter 14 plus years. This would be an awesome way for my husband and I to transition into our desire for more travel.
Info Seeker
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎02-03-2014

Re: Share Your Travel Saving Tips

Message 5 of 23 (6,567 Views)

I will not rent Hertz!!


1. On September 24, I made a car rental reservation for a Mercedes C from Hertz for October 17 thru October 21.
2. On October 17 I came to pick up the car, and after an hour of waiting in line, I was told that the car I ordered (Mercedes C) was not available.
3. I was sent to the parking garage and was told to pick up a different car. The parking garage was dark and the car was parked tightly between two other cars. The car was covered in dirt, but since I had already waited for over an hour to get the car I took it.
4. I drove the car outside the lot and did not like the way it drove. I immediately made a U-turn and went back to return the car.
5. My total time driving the car was approximately 5 minutes and I drove approximately 1 mile.
6. When I came back to tell the attendant that I didn’t like the car, the attendant took a flashlight and started checking the wheels. He removed dirt from the wheels, and then showed me scratches that had been under the dirt on all four wheels.
7. I pointed out to the attendant that I drove the car for 5 minutes and approximately 1 mile and he told me not to worry about it and just to write on his report that I dispute being at fault for any scratches on the wheels of the car. I did dispute being at fault for the damage on his report.
8. I went to the front desk to talk to the woman who was working there, and asked to speak to the manager. I waited for over an hour and still could not reach the manager.
9. I got a new car and left after being assured by the front desk person that I would not be charged for the scratches on the wheels of the car.
I dispute the claim that I caused any damage to the car.
I dispute the total amount of $942.92 claimed by Hertz.

 

Silver Conversationalist
Posts: 44
Registered: ‎11-19-2014

Re: Share Your Travel Saving Tips

Message 6 of 23 (7,074 Views)
Hope it works out for you!! Pet/house sitting is a great way to reduce travel costs since you eliminate the cost of hotels. Last year we were in Europe for 4 months on one airline ticket with a 2 week house sit in Scotland, then 2 house/pet sits in Spain for 6 weeks followed immediately by a two month long house/pet sit in London. Not a single hotel bill. Plus since we stay in private homes we also eliminated the expense of having to eat out at restaurants.
Info Seeker
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎01-07-2016

Re: Share Your Travel Saving Tips

Message 7 of 23 (7,086 Views)
Thank you for sharing.
Silver Conversationalist
Posts: 44
Registered: ‎11-19-2014

Re: Share Your Travel Saving Tips

Message 8 of 23 (7,381 Views)

We’ve been doing (free) house/pet sitting for the past 3 ½ years.  The pet owners get caring, responsible, pet-loving retirees who do in-home pet sitting at no cost….giving them peace of mind while they are traveling.  In exchange for caring for their pets, we get free accommodations for a few weeks……or several months.

 

There are various online websites  you can join for a fee that connect the pet/homeowners with the free in-home pet sitters.  We belong to about seven of these sites, some are better than others.  The fee to join the websites range from $20 a year to $120 a year.  But we think that’s minimal compared to what we’ve saved in lodging costs.   And, you don’t have to join all seven; one or two would probably be fine depending on how much you want to travel.

 

The websites confidentially link home/pet owners who are looking for someone with pet sitters.  The homeowners post their “listing” detailing the dates, the location, the pets and usually include photos of their home.  As a member of that website, you can reply when you see a listing of interest, and send a confidential response to the homeowner expressing your interest.

 

It’s competitive, especially for sits in popular tourist locations.  In fact, one homeowner told us they received over 100 responses in the first 24 hours.  We put a little website together with tips on how to get started including how to write a great profile, the importance of responding quickly to listings that you’re interested in, etc.  If after reading our tips you still have specific questions, we would be happy to respond to a private message.

 

This is an amazing way to travel and meet wonderful people around the world.  As we mentioned in our original post, we’ve done long-term sits in Australia, New Zealand, Scotland, Spain, Greek island of Paros, London, Anguilla, Hawaii and several in the states.  It is hard to describe the interesting people we have met and the journey we have been on….all thanks to pet sitting.  We have completed 25 pet sits to date giving us a unique opportunity to meet wonderful people and see the world more economically than staying in hotels.

 

To read our tips go to: www.traveltheworldpetsitting.com

 

Be sure to click on the tab “Pet Sitting Tips” which includes a lot of tips on writing a good profile and how to respond to postings.  We don’t get every sit we apply for, but our batting average has improved over the past 4 years.

 

Good luck and happy travels!  Laurie and Keith

 

Info Seeker
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎09-05-2008

Re: Share Your Travel Saving Tips

Message 9 of 23 (7,465 Views)

How do find the information regarding people who need house/pet sitting?

Info Seeker
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎02-08-2015

Re: Share Your Travel Saving Tips

Message 10 of 23 (7,493 Views)
My wife and I will be retiring this year and would love to travel. We too are responsible pet lovers, home owners and property owners and always have been. This sounds fabulous and we think we would like to try something like this. Sharing some of your experienced tips would be very much appreciated. The whole experience sounds very intriguing. Thank you for your time.. Mark and Candace