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View Full Version : Housesitting Advice


tjkraz
11-11-2004, 10:54 PM
OK, DISsers, I need some feedback. We're having someone housesit for us for the first time in December. What's the proper compensation etiquette when you have someone housesit?

Background:

When I was in college, I probably housesat 8-10 times for friends--mostly one family. Never was cash compensation offered, nor was it really expected. Occasionally I'd get a T-Shirt or other trinket from the vacation. But as a 21-22 year old, having 3000 sq ft to myself for a week was payment enough.

Next month the son of a coworker has gladly agreed to watch our house for about 8 days. We've known him for about 10 years, and the fact that he's a divinity student probably means no loud parties. ;) In fact he already commented that it will be nice to have a quiet place to study since exams are that same week.

We have a dog, but he's pretty low maintenance--let him out as necessary and feed him daily. We've made arrangements for snow removal. We'll certainly stock the fridge with all of the staples he'll need for the week.

I'd already planned to bring him a shirt or something else back from our trip. Is that adequate? What do you do?

Beca
11-12-2004, 12:21 AM
I don't know...we always pay. We have a dog and cats, so when the neighbor kids just "check on the animals" 3 times per day, we pay between $15-20 per day.

My neighbor also has a college student she uses to house sit. The girl charges $20 per day. It is something she does on the side for money.

I don't know anyone who does this for free. We have ALWAYS compensated for it...but, maybe I am just really out of the loop on this one.

If the student doesn't expect payment...then, I don't think payment is neccessary...you are very lucky!! Buy him a really nice shirt!!!;)

:wave:

Beca

goofyforlife
11-12-2004, 09:32 AM
If he were just "watching house" and keeping mail from piling up, then the t-shirt might be ok.

but since there's animals involved, I would be more inclined to agree with the other poster on something more....

My dog is low maintenance also. I was paying a professional dog walker $15 a visit which meant $30 a day for my dog.

She was really great and dependable.

We moved recently and for our last trip I asked our neighbors daughter (age 18) if she wanted to dog-sit. I paid her $20 a day.

But in the end it was worth every penny. She brought in mail and my dog was happy and content when we came home.
(instead of tired and neurotic like after we leave her at a kennel)

but since you're feeding him too (your house sitter that is) ...maybe less compensation would be OK.
:)

spiceycat
11-12-2004, 10:51 AM
$20 a day is pretty normal for house/dog sitting.

if he is responsibe for your dog this is a bargin.

just priced how much the vet or the kennel would charge you to have your pet.

if he is surpose to kept the place up - definitely pay him.

CarolMN
11-12-2004, 12:56 PM
December in Ohio - Hmmmmm. Will your divinity student be shoveling something besides dog doo-doo? :teeth:

Since he is the friend of a co-worker as well as a student (they seem to be universally poor) I'd give him some cash or maybe a gift certificate to a bookstore or a nice restuarant (in adition to the souvenir T-shirt ).

Best wishes -

rocketriter
11-12-2004, 01:42 PM
Sounds like you need to have a conversation with your potential housesitter. If you're comfortable paying him, say, $20/day, you could open the discussion with this as an offer and see how he responds. If you're uncertain or feel it's appropriate to fish around and see if he'll do it for free, then let him open with his request. He might ask for less, or he might ask for more. But you and he really should come to agreement in advance.

IMHO, I'd never presume that a non-family member is happy to work for free. $20/day is not an onerous amount (I pay more than that to board my dog), and it doesn't hurt to offer it.

EmptyNester
11-12-2004, 02:07 PM
My 20 yr old niece house/dog sat for us for a week last month. She was thrilled with the $100 we paid her. It was a little cheaper than boarding our dog ($16/day), but we also provide food (and she gets to use my jacuzzi :) )