Back-to-back housesitting from Brisbane to Melbourne, saved us 6 weeks of lodging.
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Housesitting jobs abound in Australia
We always knew we would come back to Australia one day, but as we live in Canada, the land of Oz often seems too distant, almost unreachable. Since our last visit to Oceania, a lot had changed for us, we’d now become digital nomads and almost location independent, spending our summers at home in Quebec and escaping our crazy winters by traveling to any warmer latitudes.
With our new lifestyle in place, we often talked about becoming housesitters as a way to travel the world. Our house sitter profile was done, our character referrals compiled and ready to go. From that point on, we were constantly scouring the web for potential housesits on multiple housesitting sites.
When a position for housesitting in Australia opened up in Brisbane on Trustedhousesitters.com, we jumped at the opportunity, applying immediately with a 6-month lead time.
This would be our first ‘’official housesit” through a website, as we’d previously done many for friends and family. We’d set the bar to a 4-week minimum duration for a housesit in Australia as it represented a substantial airfare investment for us to get there.
Knowing that housesitting opportunities are always available from coast to coast in beautiful Australia, we took a leap of faith in applying for this initial housesit thinking that if we’d get this one, cross our fingers, we could land a subsequent housesit right after, looking for the perfect domino effect to take place.
We’d also agreed that securing this housesitting job near Brisbane would set Australia as the starting point to our winter getaway.
Housesitting in Australia saves you loads on lodging fees.
Let’s be honest, Australia can be an expensive country to travel to, it surely was on our first visit, a few years back. Getting a housesitting job in a high-priced country is a fantastic way to save on lodging and travel rent-free, who wouldn’t want that?
Moreover, several benefits come with house and pet sitting, especially for location independent and wanderlust filled nomads like us, the best one of all being that you get to live like a local… Priceless in our opinion.
NOTE: Even if you do get free lodging, don’t forget that a housesitting job is intended as to take care of someone’s home and their beloved pets. Time restrictions regarding the animal’s care may stop you from going on a whim to that special place or remote beach. Check out our additional house-sitting considerations here.
Most Australians leave for long periods of time for their holidays, making this country’s residents very familiar with housesitting, some might be uneasy with North Americans applying on housesitting jobs in Australia, particularly regarding the commitment and responsibility of coming all the way down under. Therefore, both parties need to be clear in expressing their intentions and expectations about the housesit.
We enjoyed our time with the adorable and well-behaved Macha & Trompa. They kept us active with daily walks, ball-playing and early rising.
Securing a housesit in Australia
Set in Sandgate, a seaside suburb, 1hr north of Brisbane, this 4-week housesit for two Airedales seemed like the perfect opportunity to debut our winter escapade. We detailed our housesit application, listing our capabilities to take care of their two darling Airedales, having owned one ourselves for 11 years. We clearly expressed our desire to escape Canada’s winter, fully willing to travel to destination, which resulted in a Skype meeting request on their part.
In the live interview with the homeowners, a Scot and Argentinean couple, we got to see the two adorable dogs with the house, a modest Queenslander-style home with an in-ground pool in the backyard. The sit also came with access to their car, a huge benefit for a suburban location such as this. The home was two blocks from the ocean, another nice attribute we’d factored in. The call ended with a done deal, we’d landed our first housesit… In Australia!
Nailing a Second Housesit Job in Australia
Filled with excitement, we shopped around for airfare and got a great deal on Skyscanner, our favorite flight booking platform. Another definite advantage of concluding a housesit with this much lead time, was the added opportunity to find decent flight rates, even taking into consideration flying in during the Christmas holidays. Now that our dates were penciled in for Brisbane, our search for another housesit began.
It didn’t take long before a 14-day housesit in Melbourne’s suburb of Wheelers Hill for two boxers came up. It fitted perfectly with our dates, literally starting 48 hours after our Brisbane housesit ended. Housesitting in Melbourne sounded fabulous and with Australia’s internal flights being so frequent and affordable, we concluded that getting there was, as I say… Easy peasy enough, so we applied with the hopes of landing this second one as well.
Mentioning prior experience in the application with the dog breed in question seemed to help, as Nathalie’s parents previously owned a couple of boxers. A Skype interview was planned with the homeowner, as we hoped we’d get this second housesit in one of Melbourne’s prime suburbs.
The friendly lady introduced us to her dogs, Indie and Aston, and showed us around the property, again with a gorgeous inground pool in the backyard and access to their vehicle. The call ended with an agreement, we’d concluded another housesit, how lucky were we?
Why We Recommend Housesitting in Australia
Housesitting overall is very rewarding. You feel useful, you get to live in beautiful homes around the world and take care of wonderful pets. Both our housesitting assignments in Australia gave us the chance to see and visit interesting venues.
We saw kangaroos on our morning walks and kite surfers at the local beach in Sandgate. We also got to explore Brisbane and its many world-class museums. While the Wheelers Hill housesit, located a mere 30 minutes from Melbourne, provided us with easy access to St Kilda’s many attractions and the Yarra Valley wine region, making for fun half-day getaways.
Being away for the Holidays
Happily, many of our fellow Servas members joined us for a Christmas potluck brunch, which made up for being away from our families during the holiday season. All in all, we learned a few things during our 6 weeks living in Australia, but mostly that Auzzies are very friendly, easy-going and quite welcoming.
A nightly spectacle of hundreds of fruit bats at dusk hovering in the sky made for interesting evening entertainment in Sandgate, watch the video below…
For many of us, making it to this part of the world requires a fair investment in airfare, but remember that from there, you get access to many affordable flights to the neighboring regions such as Asia and Indonesia.
Housesitting in Australia provided us with 6 weeks worth of free lodging. These savings were put to good use, as we set out exploring a South East Asia itinerary, a win-win proposition.
How does housesitting in Australia sound to you, ready to get that first job?
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