Keeping up with your hobbies and homesitting
Posted on 11 September, 2017
Homesitting is the ideal job for keeping up with your hobbies. Homesitters look after people’s homes and pets, but outside regular duties such as walking a dog or feeding animals there is plenty of time to spend for doing things you love to do.
For one couple, Malcolm Horsup and his wife Sue, this is spending time with dogs and cooking. The retired couple from Essex started home and pet sitting in 2013. They tend to take on assignments during the winter months, as they have a boat in France, which they spend their time on in the summer.
They have many regular clients and have stayed in some fantastic homes. These have included multi-million pound mansions with swimming pools and gyms and Grade 1 listed houses dating back to the 12th century, as well as typical family homes.
One of the big attractions of the role was the prospect of looking after lots of dogs. Whilst the couple have never owned a dog together, Sue had owned a couple of Dobermans in the past. Malcolm explains, “We would love a dog of our own, but we travel too much. However, since becoming homesitters, we get our ‘dog fix’ every winter and all the assignments we do involve looking after dogs.”
Malcolm says to be a good homesitter you need to be able to occupy yourself. He says, “You can’t leave a home unattended for more than three hours, and one hour after dark when on assignment. You need something to occupy your time. You don’t want to just be sat watching TV all day and having a hobby is important.”
“My wife enjoys cooking and she loves to try out different recipes. In the homes we’ve stayed in there is usually an Aga on all the time, so this is great for her. I enjoy IT and tinkering around with computers. We also spend a lot of time planning our travels and bring maps and guide books, so we can plan where to go and what to see on our next trip,” adds Malcolm.
Another couple who are relatively new to home and pet sitting are retirees, Martin and Kristine Bell, from Nottinghamshire. They are thoroughly enjoying their new homesitting lifestyle, as they get to spend the evenings reading, or doing crosswords and Sudoku puzzles and Kristine enjoys knitting. In one home there was a large dining room table, so they did a 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle over the course of their stay.
Martin says, “The best way of spending the evening is having a dog on your knee or by your feet to stroke while you’re reading, it gives us a great feeling of contentment – and the dog too!”
Essex based Margaret Mackleworth, is in her early seventies and has been homesitting for eleven years. She loves animals and home and pet sitting gives her the ideal opportunity to spend time with them, and most of her assignments have involved looking after dogs or cats.
Margaret says, “Home and pet sitting is the perfect job for me, I love to visit new places and meet new people and I find that dog walking is very sociable! One of my favourite things is to go for long walks in the countryside, so I enjoy rural homesits with dogs that I can take for a walk.”
With over a hundred homesits under her belt, her top tip for anyone considering the role is to have a hobby to keep them occupied in the evenings. For Margaret this is doing jigsaw puzzles and she always takes one with her wherever she is located.
If you are looking for a role that also gives you time to spend on hobbies then give us a call today on 01296 630 730 or click here to find out more.