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Old 07-10-2011, 03:55 PM
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Southern Oregon
Posts: 6,436
How much to pay a housesitter?

So a family friend has asked me to house-sit for a week, and she specifically asked me to tell her how much I should be paid. I'm lost; I don't really know how much a person charges for this sort of thing. There's plants to be watered (actually, two houses of plants; this friend's partner is going out of town with her, but the houses are practically next door), a cat to be fed, and a big giant dog to be walked twice a day. What does a person get paid to house-sit nowadays?

(Animal pics when I can get 'em. The cat is jet black and bowling ball-shaped, the dog is a giant, fluffy, white Great Pyrenees.)
Old 07-10-2011, 04:05 PM
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: DC Metro
Posts: 275
Personally? I'd charge ~ $50/night for that setup. But, I am right outside of DC; old enough to prefer sleeping in my own bed; and make enough money that I would need for it to be worth my while.
Old 07-11-2011, 08:46 AM
Charter Member
Join Date: May 1999
Location: da UP, eh
Posts: 13,099
We pay $25/night for a house sitter. That includes taking care of the pugs, getting the mail, and watering the flowers on the deck in the summer. In the winter it might involve very light snow shoveling - basically only if we get dumped on enough that the pugs can't get outside to do their business. The major shoveling/plowing is taken care of by a guy we contract with, so the housesitter wouldn't have to do that.

For the past several years, my mother-in-law did it, but she can't do it anymore so we're trying to find a replacement. Before that, we'd get some of my college-aged nieces or nephews to do it. In other words, the rate was for seniors or kids, people who more or less thought it was a great thing to hang out in a pretty nice house for a few days. I'm guessing we'd have to pay more to get a bona fide genuine adult-type with a life who wouldn't be quite so excited about leaving their own home.
Old 07-11-2011, 09:08 AM
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Western Pennsylvania
Posts: 27,241
Originally Posted by appleciders View Post
she specifically asked me to tell her how much I should be paid.
"I'm sorry, but if you have to ask you cannot afford me".

I give my 17 year old son $20 a day, which he tries to politely turn down, then I insist and he etc.
Old 07-11-2011, 09:34 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 5,989
[QUOTE=Athena;14008733I'm guessing we'd have to pay more to get a bona fide genuine adult-type with a life who wouldn't be quite so excited about leaving their own home.[/QUOTE]

This. The last time I house-sat was the summer I spent prepping for the bar exam - a foreign service wonk needed her cats fed and place maintained while she had adventures in Asia, so I ended up with a free apartment for the summer. That was a fantastic deal at the time - the lease on my group house was ending, and I was sick of housemates, so this worked really well.

But I certainly wouldn't do that again - not for more than a few days, anyway. I like my apartment, and don't really need extra money.

Funny thing about (slowly) becoming an adult is that "FREE STUFF!" isn't quite as attractive as it once was - you see the opportunity costs too clearly.
Old 07-11-2011, 09:41 AM
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 4,821
I'm paying my daughter $50/day to dogsit while I'm on vacation. Boarding costs me $65/day for the two of them and they stop eating so from my point of view it's a bargin for all concerned.
Old 07-11-2011, 10:35 AM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Beffnal Green innit
Posts: 8,096
Bloody hell. Some of you are paying more than my hotel's costing me for two of us.
Old 07-11-2011, 10:37 AM
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Western Reserve
Posts: 8,374
Boarding a very large dog is very expensive, and can be stressful on the dog.* Your price should be less than the boarding fee, but enough that they view it as a genuine service and not just a favor. I just checked a few kennels near me and they charge about $40 a night.

*Our older dog has separation anxiety and if we leave him alone, and another person comes into the house, he will think we are not coming back. Our dogs are both rescues and have issues, especially the older one, and he's much more comfortable with being boarded at a friend's house; he knows we will come back for him.
Old 07-11-2011, 11:49 AM
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: 'burbs of Cincinnati, OH
Posts: 13,995
We just had a college student watch our beagle (including one walk per day), feed the fish, water our plants, and take in the mail. She stayed overnight and was welcomed to have a few friends over. We paid her $30/day.

Last edited by PunditLisa; 07-11-2011 at 11:49 AM.

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