If you are planning on going away for an extended period of time, hiring a house sitter is a great way to keep your mind at ease. We know that leaving your home and all of your belongings with someone can be quite intimidating, so we have come up with a list of 10 important questions to ask your next potential house sitter.
General Background Information
1) What qualities do you have that make you a great house sitter?
Questions like this will give you an idea of who this person is, how well they communicate, and how seriously they take their job. There aren’t particularly any right answers, but look into how they justify these answers.
2) How many years have you been house sitting?
Having experience is something that is very valuable when looking for a house sitter. With more experience comes more knowledge surrounding potential problems or emergencies.
3) Would you be able to provide 2 or more references along with their contact information?
Hearing first hand stories from past families that your candidate has house sat for can be quite valuable. This will allow you to verify their background and give you the assurance that you need in order to feel confident in your hiring decision.
Details of the Job
4) Are you willing to take care of a pet?
Pets are like family, so making sure they are taken care of is a priority. Be sure to clarify whether or not your potential housesitter is allergic and/or comfortable with your pet. Clarify how to care for them on a day to day basis, and what you suggest should happen if they were to ever get sick.
5) Are you willing to water all of our plants (both inside and out)?
It is important to lay out expectations like this beforehand, so everyone is on the same page. Depending on how long you are planning on being away for, writing down a list for what plants have to be watered and how frequently they must be watered is a useful resource for a house sitter.
6) What are the kind of things that you will do to make my house look lived in?
This is an important aspect of any house sitter’s job. Doing things like collecting mail, turning on/off outdoor lights, and putting out the garbage are little tasks that go a long way.
7) What are your payment expectations?
This is something that should be made clear right from the start in order to avoid any conflict. This is the right time for negotiations and discussion between both parties in order to come up with something that works for everyone.
8) What is the longest amount of time you are willing to house sit for?
Some house sitters are only okay with working long term jobs, and vice versa, so it should be made clear from the start how long you are planning on leaving your property vacant. Some professionals may have a busy schedule and won’t be as flexible as others, so it is important to keep this in mind beforehand.
9) How do you feel about working over the holidays?
Holidays are a popular time to go away as kids are out of school and parents are taking time off of work, which also means that it is the busiest time to find a house sitter. If you are planning on going away for Holidays such as Christmas or Thanksgiving, it is important to clarify such a thing to your candidate in order to ensure that they do not have any conflicting holiday plans.
10) Do you have any questions for me?
You want them to ask questions because it shows that they have been engaged and care about the job and, in turn, your property. Common questions they may ask include information clarifying your alarm system, thermostat, and other home appliances.
These questions aren’t all necessary so feel free to ask anything else that is relevant that comes to mind during the interview. You want to feel confident in this decision.