House-sitting in Australia - Top Tips On Getting Your First House-sits | Elizabeth Bezant | Skillshare

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House-sitting in Australia - Top Tips On Getting Your First House-sits

teacher avatar Elizabeth Bezant, Writer and House-sitter

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

9 Lessons (15m)
    • 1. Welcome

      0:45
    • 2. Tip 1: Spread The Word

      2:04
    • 3. Tip 2: Your Profile

      2:21
    • 4. Tip 3: References

      1:09
    • 5. Tip 4: Stay On The Ball

      1:28
    • 6. Tip 5: Be Prepared

      1:53
    • 7. Tip 6: The Extra Step

      1:56
    • 8. Tip 7: Online Profile

      2:27
    • 9. Project

      1:09
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About This Class

House-sitting can be a great way to get free accomodation as you travel the world or even around your home town. But, as with all new things, it can be tricky to successfully take the first step - or in this case, get your first few house-sits. There are a variety of unseen pitfalls and challenges to consider, and that’s before anybody says they're willing to take a risk on you being able to look after their home and pets.

That’s why I’ve put together this course - so you’ll know exactly where to start and what to do to give yourself the best chance of getting the ideal house-sits.

The top tips included here are a combination of insights I’ve gained after several years of full-time house-sitting in Australia, and information passed on to me by home-owners who regularly book sitters.

So whether you’re travelling the world or are content with Australia, whether you’re new to house-sitting or eager to learn more, this course was designed to give you the added advantage. Not just to teach you how to get house-sits, but how to get successful ones regularly.

Meet Your Teacher

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Elizabeth Bezant

Writer and House-sitter

Teacher


 

Hi, my name’s Elizabeth Bezant and I’m an internationally-published, freelance writer and writing coach, currently house-sitting full-time across Australia.

For the past two decades, or so, I’ve had a wonderful time inspiring and informing writers (in person, in print and online).

Over the years I’ve had a diverse range of articles, stories, columns and educational features published in countless magazines, anthologies and newspapers across the world. The ones I’m proudest of were included in: Britain’s Sunday Telegraph newspaper, Living Abroad, and Grace magazines; America’s Chicken Soup for the Soul, Chocolate for the Woman’s Soul, and&n... See full profile

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Transcripts

1. Welcome: Hi. Are you thinking of taking up house sitting here in Australia or in fact, anywhere else across the world? On a you thinking. But how do I get my first sit? Well, if that's the case, this course is for you. The top tips are made up of a combination of information I've learned after several years of full time house sitting and information shared to me from home owners themselves. So basically it has everything here toe help you get your 1st 6 It also has a project at the end of it. So why not join me and discover the top tips to get in your first sit in Australia? 2. Tip 1: Spread The Word: So here are my top tips on getting your first Australian house. It tip one, as you might expect, relates toe advertising and spreading the word the best way I found to let people know I was house sitting, other than telling everybody I knew and them then kindly passing on the word has always been to sign up with a couple of house sitting websites. These the science designed purely to put homeowners looking for a sitter in touch with house sitters looking for a sit. The homeowner puts up an advert saying when, where and what they need looked after. While the house sitter pays a yearly subscription to share their own profile on the site and toe have the ability to apply direct toe all suitable EDS. Most of these sites and national or international on offer wide selection of sits in different locations homes, animals, varying levels of care and from one data over a year. It's all very civilized and straightforward, and in my opinion, having a professional looking profile on this kind of sight that makes finding sits in Australia or anywhere quite simple well worth the annual subscription fee here in Australia , there are a selection of good house sitting sites, some focusing on entirely on Australia. When we started out, we chose to use minder home and Aussie house sitters. Not that I can remember the reason why we picked, um, over the others, but as yet I have had no reason to regret our decision, although I have heard of other sites that seemed to work Justus well. 3. Tip 2: Your Profile: tip, too. Once you've subscribed to a house sitting website, the next step is to create an honest and outstanding profile to put on it, something that will inspire the homeowner to pick you over other sitters or, at the very least, put you on their short list. When it comes to a homeowner selecting a sitter, most of them not surprisingly, once somebody, they can rely on who's responsible and trustworthy. But above all, they want somebody who will care for their pets, as the saying goes, as if they were their own. Not that every sit involves looking after animals good on the whole, the majority of them, too. Simply put, people want to know that when they come home from their trip that their house will be Justus. They left it, the silver still in the drawer, no damage from wild parties and happy, healthy animals waiting for them. So these are all important things to cover in your profile. Other things to focus on. Once you've got the words on the page of that, the text is clear, succinct, friendly and free of mistakes. So always consider getting somebody else to prove Friedel writing before you post it or failing that, at least get up and walk around the room before uploading it. This will lessen the chance of you not noticing your computer's unwanted auto correct changes, typos, wordy sentences or even pieces of information that you should have left out or internal flee did leave out and shouldn't have. So what else? Well, photos of a great idea. Not professionally taken shots or ones of your family or way you live or even passport pictures. So these are the star that many people are load when starting out, but they don't really provide the homeowner with the information. Thereafter, Better toe have a selection of good quality, relaxed pictures taken of you alone but ideally with pets. 4. Tip 3: References: Tip three references a vital part of website profiles, regardless of whether it's on your site or a house sitting website. After all, homeowners don't know who you are, so they'll need a handful of short, well written, descriptive and punchy paragraphs to reassure them that you're the ideal person for the chance. But how can I include references when I've never house that you ask a good question. Still, everybody has to start out somewhere. So the idea here is to think of things you've done that we linked to house sitting times. You house sat for friends or cared for another person's pets. Have you done any volunteer work? In a similar field is the rainy body with a recognizable name or job title? Who would be willing to vouch for your honesty and capability? It's never wise to lie when putting your references are. But as you start out, you may need to be a little more creative and where you find them 5. Tip 4: Stay On The Ball: and tip for is to stay on the ball. Once you've uploaded your profile onto a house sitting website on, encourage your friends to spread the word, either in person or through social media. It's vital to be immediately aware of any enquiries or advertised sits that could suit you and for you to react quickly. This might seem pretty obvious yet, funnily enough, it's also a step that's often overlooked, and in some cases it's your response time that tips the balance on whether you get short listed or no. After all, if a person is in the process of booking a trip or contemplating one, the ease of having somebody quickly offering to sit for them enables them to cross at least one thing off their to do list a subtlety that really can't be overlooked. Plus, of course, it shows a genuine interest from you. Not that I'm saying you need to be online the entire time. Only the regular checking throughout the day can be to your advantage. To help with this. Somehow sitting sites will send you regular updates or alert you toe when a suitable sit is listed 6. Tip 5: Be Prepared: tip. Five. A big prepared So you've got your profile out there when you're waiting for suitable, sits what's next. Well, creating a formal response later. Oh, even a series of thumb, for example, one for a sit with pets and one for those without or one to reply to a personal inquiry and another for adverts. It's entirely up to you whether you choose to write your letter on underlined the bitch. You may want to change to suit different sits or if you created Moors of form with spaces for you to fill in or in fact, any other stone. The important thing is that you have one written and that its on hand, because the last thing you want to do is instantly send out a badly written a message or miss your chance entirely by not responding quickly enough. This way you'll have a well written response that you can quickly personalize and then send out. Unlike your website profile, though, this letter really needs toe, have a personal tone and focus on the specifics that the particular homeowner is looking for. But having said that, there can be some repetitions to your profile. Just try to avoid it reading like a blanket email. Ways to do this would be to include things like the city dates show you aware of any pets you're caring for. Make sure you spell all names correctly, refer to any specifics relative to their inquiry and so on all minor changes to a form letter. Then finally, before sending it out, just give it another quick look and then press send. 7. Tip 6: The Extra Step: tip six. It's about taking the extra step. Everybody leads a different kind of life. And as such, there are often things one person might take for granted while another person might not. Things like how much gardening is acceptable to expect done or how far away the shops and bus stops might be, or even how much attention will be required by the pets and so on. For example, as a person who spent a lot of time working online, I regularly find myself assuming everybody not only has Internet, but that they also have a decent download limit, an assumption that has got me into trouble more than once. Therefore, when writing your form response letter, ensure you not only list what you're offering and what you require, but also your preference to meet the homeowners am pets before except in the seat. This extra insights you've get by visiting the home in person can lead to many subtle little hiccups being avoided. But most of all, it confirms where the pets like you that you feel comfortable caring for them and the home , plus that you get on with the homeowners even as little as five minutes can be enough to give you and the homeowner on idea of whether the sit will go smoothly. If you are unable to meet the homeowners in person, I'd recommend video conferences through something like Skype or FaceTime again. This is a step that could be often overlooked, but I've found it not only has a huge impact on the decision of whether to take us it or not, but also on the success of the city. 8. Tip 7: Online Profile: tip seven on online profile is not enough. If you've already signed up for one or more of the house sitting websites, you may think that your online profile page with them is a sufficient online presence. Truth is, a profile page holds in range of information, but really enough to show who you really are your personality, what you have to offer or even to keep homeowners up to date, all important things. If you want to be a full time sitter, which is why I recommend you also have your own website dedicated entirely to your house sitting. Not only can it share more information, it gives an air of professionalism and permanency. Plus it also means you have somewhere to easily do it. Anybody who wants to know more about you and your house sitting If you're new to website creation, you'll be pleased to know there are many free and easy to create options available. Simply type website creation into your search engine and pick whichever option appeals. Most come with clear and easy to follow instructions on how to create a site that reflects your preferences and character. The pages you include on your side or entirely up to you. Simply think about what you would want to know if you were organizing a holiday in inviting a complete stranger into your home, I've found our most popular pages to be profiles frequently asked questions, references and the blawg. But remember, it's not only the information you show on these pages, that's important. It's also the way the information is shared. So when you write the text, don't try to fit any moulds. Write it in a way that sounds like you show people who you are pick colors and layouts that suit you, plus more photos, ideally of you and relating to house. Its AM pets would help and maybe even a video or two. Then, once the website is completed, don't forget to include its link on your house. Sitting sites profile Page your response later, and everywhere else you can think off 9. Project: Well, congratulations on finishing this course. I hope it's given you some ideas about how to go out there and get your first house. It's and, as promised, a project three questions, which you may be able to answer immediately. Alternatively, you may need a few days to solve, but either way they're important answers tohave. So question one. What have you to offer as a house sitter? Question two. What is it that you require from a homeowner? And question three is, Where will you get your references from? So there you go. That's a simple as three questions and three ounces, and I hope you'll post the answer to your 1st 2 questions online so we can all compare and discuss. Well, there you go. Thank you for completing my course. I hope you enjoyed it. And good luck with finding your first sit