If you’ve seen the movie The Holiday, starring Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet where they swap their LA Mansion & English Cottage homes during the Christmas Holidays then you would have a rough idea what House Sitting is all about.
A property featured in lovehomeswap.com – Pattaya, Thailand
In their scenario though, they were required to ‘Swap’ houses, meaning you will need to make your property available for other people to stay in while you stay in theirs. Thankfully, this arrangement does exist in real life and you can check it out on websites such as
Now there’s another attractive option for you to stay in someone else’s property without providing your own property, this is what they call House Sitting.
In exchange, as house-sitters you will of course need to look after their home and (sometimes) their pets. Don’t forget you’d still need to cover your own travel cost and food while you’re there. But who wouldn’t want to live in luxurious homes for FREE? If you’re a traveling family like mine, having a living room and a kitchen in your accommodation can definitely help keep the family sane.
A property featured in lovehomeswap.com – Belize
We’ve all heard and done AirBnb or HomeAway, which I would personally vouch for because so far all of my Airbnb stays have been satisfactory. The upside of AirBnb is it’s very easy to search & book even from your smartphone and most accommodations are available for short-stays. How it works with House Sitting is a kinda similar to AirBnb, you need to have a profile to get approved by the Home Owners, however since the accommodation will be for free you need to have a ‘winning’ profile to get approved – if you have a criminal record and don’t know how to look after a house (or pets) I’d say stay away from House Sitting (it’s just not for you).
Some of the House-Sitting websites out there:
I have heard success stories of friends of friends who have done home exchanges, and read a few blogs of people who have done house-sitting for years while they travel.
One of them is an Australian couple who posted on their blog here
Eventhough not all home options are luxurious, it all depends on availability at your destination and which accommodation you choose and approved for. I personally have never House-Sitted before but would love to try if one day we plan on having a long-stay in a particular destination.
A property featured in lovehomeswap.com – South Lake Tahoe, California