A Fox Terrier and a German Pointer dog with a UK background

Our Experience Housesitting in the UK

30 Jan, 2024

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Eva Mitchell

Tim and I landed in Manchester on the 2nd October 2023 to spend ten weeks housesitting our way around the stunning UK. Prior to arriving in the UK, we had lined up two house sits in Scotland and five house sits in England. Housesitting in the UK allowed us to explore the stunning Scottish Highlands, all the way down to the rugged Cornwall coast. Without the house sits that we secured on Trusted Housesitters, our budget wouldn’t have stretched far enough to allow us to travel as extensively across the UK as we did. Let me share with you what it was like housesitting in the UK and everything you need to know if you want to do the same! 

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Our Experience Housesitting in Scotland 

We fell in love with Scotland during our time house sitting in the Scottish Highlands and the Dumfries. When we arrived at our first Scottish house sit in the Highlands, we were gobsmacked by how epic the house was we were going to be house sitting in. The home had been renovated from a manse to a masterpiece. It was perched near a loch surrounded by trees in all hues of autumnal colouring. Such a beautiful spot!

This house sit turned out to be the perfect place for us to reconnect with nature and enjoy some peace and quiet with our new furry friend, Bobby. She was a sassy older lady with a big personality who led the way on our walks and was impartial to a treat. With this house sit being set in the Scottish Highlands, we had access to some of the most incredible day walks in Scotland. We hiked and scrambled our way through to the hidden valley and could not believe how beautiful that area of Scotland really is. Absolutely breathtaking!


Our second experience housesitting in Scotland was with two dogs who were like chalk and cheese. A gorgeous golden retriever, Rhubarb, who brought a ton of playful energy and made us laugh with her cheekiness and an older chocolate labrador, Angus, who was quite content to hang out at home and go for a leisurely dawdle around the block a few times a day. 

The homeowners for this house sit were kind enough to lend us their car while they were away. This meant we could take Rhubarb on some epic adventures around the countryside. One day, we ventured South to the Lakes District for a scenic walk up the Catbells. I think it’s safe to say that Rhubarb loved the walk just as much as we did!


If you love hiking and exploring what nature has to offer, I highly recommend housesitting in Scotland. And even better if you can score a sit with an active dog who will be your best companion on your Scottish adventures. 

Our Experience Housesitting in England 

During our 10 weeks in the UK, we spent almost six weeks housesitting in England across five different sits. By strategically planning our house sit locations, we managed to explore Yorkshire, the Cotswolds, Devon, Cornwall and a cute town just out of London. We made lots of new furry friends and met some very kind and caring Brits who welcomed us with open arms and made us feel right at home. 

We looked after both cats and dogs during our time housesitting in England. 

couple running in Sahara Desert

In the Cotswolds, we were looking after a very independent cat who spent most of her day out in the countryside. This meant we were able to head out during the day to do our own exploring. The house sit was within driving distance of the cute towns like Bibury, Castle Combe and Upper Slaughter, which were all well worth a visit. One morning, we treated ourselves to a beautiful brunch at Daylesford Organic and on another day managed to visit Diddly Squat Farm for a bacon burger and some goodies from the farm shop. 


Down in Cornwall we had a brilliant time taking care of two active doggos. In the UK, there is a big pub culture and dogs are allowed to come into pubs with their owners. During our time housesitting in the UK, we had not been brave enough to test this rule out until we reached Cornwall. We had two very well-behaved dogs and a dog-friendly pub near the beach that we would take them for a walk to.

One afternoon, we built up the courage and headed for the local pub with the two dogs in tow. Now back in New Zealand, it would be acceptable to take your dog to a pub if you were to sit outside but you certainly wouldn’t see dogs hanging out inside the pub. So understandably we were quite nervous to take the dogs into the local pub in the UK.

We cautiously proceeded into the pub expecting everyone to stare at us but that was not the case at all. There were already a handful of other dogs chilling out at the pub that day! Taking the dogs along to the pub for a drink with us will forever be one of the most memorable experiences from our time housesitting in England. 


After our successful trip to the pub with the dogs, we felt bold enough to try out another first, taking the dogs on the bus home with us. They were both so good and just strutted down to our seat on the bus, sat down and enjoyed the ride. What a day it was! 

During our time housesitting in England, we enjoyed plenty of cuddles, explored the English countryside, visited pubs and had a great time with our new furry friends. If you get the opportunity to house sit in England, I would highly recommend just going for it!


Was it easy to secure house sits in the UK using Trusted Houesitters?

Yes, we found it easy to find house sits that would suit us right across the UK. It does help to have a well written Trusted Housesitters profile to secure the sits you really want. Feel free to check out my write up on how to create a standout trusted housesitters profile if you are just getting started on your house-sitting journey. 


How to Write a Standout Trusted Housesitters Profile

How many housesits are available in the UK on Trusted Housesitters?

There are plenty of house-sitting opportunities across the UK. According to the Trusted Housesitters app, there are almost 2000 house sitting opportunities advertised in the UK today (January 2024) with over 350 of those being within the London area. This means that if you have flexible plans, it’s likely you won’t have a problem securing a house sit in the UK, even with limited housesitting experience. 


Do you need a car to house sit in the UK?

No, it is possible to secure housesits that do not require a car. The public transport systems in the UK are really extensive, making it easy to move around. There were only two house sits that we couldn’t have reached without a car and that was the one in the Scottish Highlands and the Cotswolds house sit. 

Knowing we would need a car for the house sits we had secured in rural locations around the UK. We spent the first week in Manchester finding and purchasing a cheap car before our first sit. Unfortunately for us, we brought a lemon and had to return the car after just one week of ownership. You can read more about our car disaster and what you need to know when purchasing a car in the UK as a non-resident below.


Buying a Used Car in the UK as a Non-resident

After returning our car, we ended up hiring a car in Scotland through the Turo app (which was much more affordable than car hire companies!) and brought a Two-Together Railcard that saved us 30% on all train journeys around the UK. 


What are the homes like in the UK that offer house sitting opportunities?

The cool thing about the UK is that there are so many beautiful heritage buildings that have been renovated into amazing homes. The most memorable homes from our time housesitting in the UK were an old town bakery that had been renovated into a lovely family home just north of London and a manse in the Scottish Highlands that was lovingly renovated by the owners to become a grand residence. 

The UK can be quite cold a good deal of the year but don’t fear, as most homes in the UK are heated by central heating which means you will never go cold, even in the middle of Winter! 


Were the UK homeowners friendly?

Yes, they were generally very welcoming and made us feel right at home. We were invited over for dinner on many occasions before commencing a sit. Meeting the owners before the sit quickly became one of our favourite things about house sitting in the UK.  

If you are considering house sitting in the UK, I would highly recommend signing up to Trusted Housesitters and going for it! Our experiences housesitting in Scotland and England far exceeded our expectations and we wouldn’t hesitate to do it all over again. 

Use our discount code for Trusted Housesitters to get 25% your membership.

Let us know in the comments below if you have any questions about Housesitting in the UK and I will reply ASAP!

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A word from the authors

Eva and Tim are the creators behind this world-class travel finance blog.

In 2021 they decided to travel the world for an entire year and begun implementing savings strategies to achieve their goal of long-term travel. By May 2023, they quit their jobs to embark on their year-long adventure, sharing their invaluable practical and achievable savings, planning and travel tips they learnt along the way/with the aim to help others Make Cents of Travel.

You can find Eva & Tim on Tiktok, Facebook and Instagram as Make Cents of Travel.

About Us

Hello, Hola, Ciao! We are Tim & Eva, a couple of kiwis who have spent the last few years saving for and planning our epic year-long adventure around the world. Our goal is to inspire fellow wanderlust souls (just like you!) to Make Cents Of Travel by sharing our experiences and strategies we used to turn our dream of long-term travel into a reality.


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