Frequently Asked Questions
What are the benefits of being a house sitter?
Save $$$ – get free accommodation in exchange for light duties such as companion animal care and garden maintenance, while you experience living in different communities, cultures and countries.
Great for low cost holidays and travel experiences; while saving up to buy your own home; or for young adults living at home, spend some time living independently locally without the expense of moving out.
Get tips from the home owner on where to find great vego food close to your sit.
Want to find out how to get started? See our Step-by-step Guide for house sitters
What are the benefits of having a house sitter?
Your property is lived in while you are away, providing added security.
House sitters provide their services for free, as they are also getting a benefit.
Your companion animals can stay home where they are happy, and can get daily attention and walks – much less stress for you and for them!
You save $$ – placing your companions in catteries and kennels or having someone visit your property daily while you are away is expensive.
You can relax and enjoy your time away, knowing everything is being cared for at home.
Want to find out how to get started? See our Step-by-step Guide for home owners wanting a sitter.
What are the benefits of house swapping?
The same great benefits as for having a house sitter, but you get free holiday accommodation too – save $100’s or $1,000’s of dollars!
In some cases you may be able to swap vehicles too, saving even more money on your holiday.
Enjoy the experience of living in the community you are visiting, with all the comforts of home.
Swap tips on where to find great vego food in your holiday location.
Want to find out how to get started? See our Step-by-step Guide for house swapping.
Who can participate in house sitting or swapping?
House sitters can be any age from 18 years and up. If you want to have a house-sitter or engage in a house swap, all you need is a home to offer. If you rent, you should check with your landlord before signing up.
How can I get comfortable about having strangers in my home?
Get to know them as much as you can beforehand. Use Skype or video calls, and chat by phone. Be sure that you check references thoroughly – call referees, don’t just rely on written references. Ask for a Police Check document. Meet them first if it is possible, if not make doubly sure that you check references thoroughly. Make a written agreement with them before commencing if that makes you more comfortable. For more information see our Step-by-step Guide for home owners wanting a sitter or our Step-by-step Guide for house swapping.
What does it cost?
Currently a 12 month subscription is FREE while we establish this website. We will introduce fees once we have sufficient listings. We aim to keep the fees as low as we can, please see our fees page for more information.
I have joined under the FREE period, why do I only have two weeks to complete my listing?
We implemented this rule on 1 February 2016 when we extended the free joining period – why? We found that we had 5 times as many people join as went ahead to create a listing. This meant that there weren’t actually that many listings on the site. This defeated the purpose of offering free membership which is to create a vibrant functioning site, that will encourage repeat visits, by having lots of interesting listings. We hope you understand and have fun creating your listing!
I want to register for both needing a house sitter and house swapping, how do I do this?
At this stage there is no option to add different membership types to a single account. If you would like to register for multiple options, you will need to register separately with a different user name for each membership type.
What are the benefits of receiving the newsletter?
We know you probably have too many newsletters in your inbox already, and by law we have to give you the option to opt out of our newsletter, but here is why you should leave that box ticked. We have a general newsletter, and will shortly introduce specific newsletters targeted for each of house sitters, people wanting a house sitter, and house swappers. In each of these newsletters we will highlight new listings that may be of interest to you. This saves you visiting the site regularly to see what is new! We will also have regular vegan/vegetarian travel articles and links, and tips on house sitting, having a house sitter, and house swapping. Please enjoy our newsletter, and make sure you add us to your address book so it doesn’t end up in your junk mail!
What do I do if I have forgotten to add some important details to my listing?
You can login at any time and update your listing, or add new photos.
Help - I can't delete a photo!
There is a glitch in the system the site is built on that won’t allow users to delete photos. Until this is rectified the solution is either to upload another photo over the photo you no longer want, or to contact us and let us know which photo you would like to delete (firstname.lastname@example.org), and we will do it for you.
What do I do about household bills?
It is suggested that household bills remain the responsibility of the home owner if the arrangement is for up to 8 weeks. If it is a longer sit or swap, you may like to come to an agreement about payment of utilities bills. Rates should remain the responsibility of the home owner. If someone staying in your home is likely to be using the telephone or internet extensively during shorter-term stays, you can make an agreement with them prior to the stay commencing.
Do I need to let my insurance company know?
You should contact your insurance company and find out what they need to know. Having someone live in your home whilst you are away provides added security, so they are likely to be happy with the arrangement. If you are going to be providing a vehicle, do check with your insurance company, and find out what the excess will be should there be an accident. Make sure you let your house-sitter or swapper know in advance what the excess is should the unfortunate happen.
What happens if there is any damage while I am away?
You can have an agreement in place before a sit or swap is arranged that covers breakage or damage in the event that it occurs. It is common courtesy to replace or repair any damage that you have caused whilst staying in someone’s home
How do I find out about new listings of sitters, house sits or swaps?
You can browse our website at any time, but we know you are busy! To keep you informed, all registered Members will receive a newsletter via email, at least fortnightly, to let you know about new listings of interest to you. If you are not receiving your newsletter, check your junk mail folder as some automatically generated emails are automatically sent to junk by your email service. If you use Gmail, it may end up in the ‘Promotions’ folder. You can also keep in touch via our Facebook page. You can sign up for our newsletter even if you haven’t signed up as a Member.
I am veg*n but my partner isn't. Can we still use Kindred Spirits House Sit or Swap?
Kindred Spirits House Sit or Swap exists to serve the vegan and vegetarian communities. We value honesty and respect, and appreciate you would like to use our service. If your partner is an omnivore and you choose to use this website then you will need to let the other party know this fact if you approach a Member or are approached by a Member. Your partner will also need to undertake to not make or consume animal products during your stay at a Member’s property. Any breaches of trust in this regard would result in cancellation of membership. It up to the other party to accept or reject you as a house sitter or swapper based on this information. There are house sitting and house swapping website you can use that serve the wider population. Alternatively, have your partner watch Earthlings (Link – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ibuQ-J04eLQ ) and point them to www.veganeasy.org – you never know, you might have a convert!