Considering a job relocation, but want to check it out the area first?
Or maybe you still want to take a vacation, but while unemployed & job searching, you need to keep your budget in mind?
House/petsitting can be a great solution!
One of my clients asked today about the pictures on my Facebook page of my latest “office” overlooking the marsh of the Atlantic intercoastal in NC. I explained that it was the dining room table of my current house sitting gig. Since my business is mobile, I travel to see friends, family, or just explore a new area from time to time.
My view from “Ginny’s Way” beach house**, Oak Island, NC (it’s sorta a miracle I get any work done, huh?)
I often prefer to have my own space to work, and just have some privacy when I visit people; plus, it significantly saves my budget to have FREE, comfortable and well equipped ACCOMMODATIONS.
Many friends have asked me, and now some clients, too, since I’ve talked about this in my Resume Confidence newsletters such as, Dog Days of Summer while dogsitting in Madison, WI one July-August, “HOW did you get hooked up with these great places to stay??” that I realized it was also a great idea to share with job seekers for the reasons above, too!
How I Became an “Official” Housesitter
Personally, I just sorta fell into it, like many people do with good jobs, career paths, or other things in their lives that turn out to be just wonderful. It wasn’t something I planned as a long term goal; at the time I started pet/house sitting, it was just practical for me, and fun.
It was years ago & I’d moved back to one of my favorite places, St Petersburg, FL. I was looking for a house, and in the meantime, renting a very small apartment. I love animals, but, am away too much to care for my own pets all the time. Knowing all of this, when my human friends wanted to take a vacation, they would offer me to stay in their comparably spacious & more comfortably outfitted houses in exchange for the care & feeding of their animals…YES PLEASE, sounds great to me! So I’d go move in for a weekend or 10 days or whatever & enjoy their cable TV packages on their comfy couches while showering the furry ones with love, attention…(and the occasional treats…IF allowed by their human parents, that is!)
References are a Key
One day years later I read a Facebook post from an author friend/entrepreneur, Barbara Winter (who wrote one of my all time favorite career & ‘finding your passion’ books, Making a Living Without a Job), who is friends with a full-time self described “travel vagabond”. This travel vagabond explained that one can travel the world while housesitting! As a world traveler myself, I was intrigued, and looked into it with her post, & some googling.
Turns out, that the experience and references I’d gained from helping out my friends over the years then served as the assurance that other homeowners that I didn’t know, but found on housesitting websites needed to trust me with their “castle and critters“, a phrase I use on my house sitter available profile online. (I think I’ll write a future post about how the basic tenants of writing a good resume work well with writing an interest catching housesitter profile page as well!)
How to Get Out There – Tips & Resources
As a long time professional resume writer, I can write a good pet/housesitter profile, too! Click here for info & help – (profile writing, information collections sheets, and link to my personal profile as a sample!)
Job Relocation Exploration
Many ‘gigs’ are short term, like a long weekend, and posted ahead of time. This makes it an affordable, easy way to plan a trip to visit a city that has jobs in the industry or houses the HQ of your favorite company you are targeting in your job search for possible relocation.
You Have the Time, But Not the Money for a Vacation
When you’re unemployed, you have the gift of time, but not always as much money as when you have a job. Housesitting is a perfect way to still get away while on a budget. There are just as many longer term assignments, so if a get-away week in a quiet country locale or artsy-fartsy city you’ve never explored is your goal, there will be many interesting options for that, too.
So give it a try if you have similar experience with friends, family, or neighbors & want to check out the options & opportunities of housesitting!
Get help writing an attention catching pet/house sitter profile page! Love to help you out, it’s such a good gig to get into!