Cheap as chips: The biggest draw to house sitting is that it’s ridiculously affordable. No matter where in life you are, be it living the student lifestyle of coffee and two-minute noodles, starting on your path as a career-person while juggling share-house living, or embarking on the road to homeownership, we could all use a little extra cash.
With house sitting, you can drastically lower your cost of living by cutting the cost of housing. It’s more than just a taste of what your life could be like, it is your life right now – enough money to throw together a real meal, no roommates, and a space to call your own, even for a little while. It certainly presents a nice opportunity to do some serious saving.
Live local: Us young people take an on-the-ground approach to life, valuing authenticity over a cookie cutter experience. With house sitting, you can literally live as the locals live. By avoiding a travel narrative that caters to mass tourism, you can have a much more personal experience. You could even ask your host for some recommendations on what to do in the area, where the best cafes, beachside hangouts and cheapest shopping options are.
Who wouldn’t love a slice of life insight into any number of famous cities over treating them as checklists? Plus, you can avoid the queues (and the exorbitant prices!) of tourist hot spots.
Better for the planet: Environmental consciousness has been embraced in many different parts of our lives, from reusable coffee cups to protesting on the streets. With house sitting, you can add travel to this list! Instead of having to eat out at restaurants that contribute to food waste or ordering takeout with a mountain of single-use plastics, you have access to a kitchen so you can cook with fresh ingredients and manage the scraps you create more easily than from a hotel room. You can ensure your recyclable materials are disposed of properly. You can also avoid supporting the massive CO2 emissions of the hotel industry. House sitting lets you holiday with a clear conscience.
Flexibility: Us young people lead busy lives, packed with last minute assignments, a delicate work/play balance and remembering to call your mum. It can certainly be an excuse not to travel, but it shouldn’t be! Especially as we’ve seen the capabilities of technology in letting us stay connected from a distance to work, study, and our loved ones. It can also connect us with potential homes. With house sitting, it’s never been easier to take Elastigirl’s advice and “be more flexible”: you can work your stays around places and times that are convenient to you (goodbye commute), get closer to your loved ones with some strategic house picking, and do the things you love, like heading to the beach: sweet freedom.
Get your pet fix: Oh, to hear the patter of little feet running up the hall… No, not children, pets! Who doesn’t want a fluffy little (or big boofy) companion? Yet rental properties and a healthy dose of low budget living can stop many of us from living this dream. However, house sitting can offer some respite from this pet-less existence, so why not step in and give someone else’s pet some love while they’re away? Financial responsibility not included.
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In short, house sitting really does offer the perfect lifestyle for young people; it’s affordable, it’s authentic, it lets you travel while keeping up with your commitments. We really do have a wealth of opportunities at this age, house sitting proves that, so the ball is in your court.
“What is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” (Mary Oliver).