International housesitters NatnJodie talk pets and bucketlists

25 Oct, 2019

International housesitters NatnJodie talk pets and bucketlists

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International housesitters NatnJodie have been travelling around the world by housesitting and petsitting since 2013. In a recent interview hosted on our weekly @Housesitmatch Twitter #HouseSitChat session, we asked them a series of questions about their love of petsitting, how they started travelling by housesitting, and how they support themselves as digital nomads by generating a roaming income.

Read on for their Questions and Answers:

International housesitters – by chance rather than design

Digital Nomads, Nat and Jodie work while they housesit

Q 1. Welcome to the chat Nat & Jodie! Please tell us about yourselves

A 1. We’ve been 100% nomadic since Feb 2013. We’re Aussie but no longer residents of Australia. And so now we’re officially residents of nowhere #HouseSitChat

Nat is a former Australian Federal Police Agent and Jodie a former Resort Accommodation Manager. This year Nat celebrated her 50th birthday in Bangkok during Songkran, the Thai New Year celebration ( which has the world’s largest water fight!).

Songkran Thai New Year water festival,Bangkok
Nat at Songkran








Then in March 2020 Jodie will celebrate her 50th sugar shacking in Quebec. We’ll follow that with her ultimate bucket list birthday gift, a trip to Columbia starting with a housesit in Medellin #Bucketlist #HouseSitChat

international housesitters
Jodie preparing to snowshoe in Canada

Professionals working abroad then travelling housesitters

Q 2. And how did you start housesitting and travelling?

A 2. We left Australia in Oct 2011 when Nat was offered a job in Dubai as a BDM for a Police Training Company. Not recognized as a couple, Jodie could only enter the UAE as a tourist. That meant she had to leave every 30 days to renew her visa… #HouseSitChat

Nat’s boss suggested starting a Company to ‘buy’ visa’s for his friends and for Jodie. It was a very expensive exercise. The startup was an epic fail, even with Nat leaving her job to help. After 16 months in the Middle East, we were broke & broken…

To leave the UAE we had to sell off everything and offload the biz registration name in order to cancel our visas. This left us with enough money to buy a one-way flight to London and just $300 USD cash. No credit left. All savings gone.

Those first few months of housesitting in London then SW France healed us. The unconditional love from the pets, the space, the time to re-evaluate our lives and of course, zero overheads let us breathe again.

Jodie with two of our pet charges

Then we just kept saying yes to opportunities that felt right & there’s nothing in our lives that has more ease & flow than lining up housesitting around the world. We ended up housesitting constantly nearly always with back-to-back dates for 7 years. It’s our universal confirmation we are meant to be doing this.

The Nomadic Lifestyle

Q 3. What #tips can you give to who want a nomadic lifestyle either as solo travellers or as international housesitters, but haven’t developed multiple income streams yet to support their journey?

@natnjodie #DigitalNomad #HouseSitChat 
A 3. Most ‘normal’ people don’t start their nomadic lifestyle with nothing 🙂 It’s not necessary to have multiple income streams at all, but it is far more fun when you don’t ‘have’ to always be trading time for money. #HouseSitChat
Some try it out for a year or two as holiday housesitting. Others stay on the road for many years and may end up finding the place in the world that feels like home, or at least a new base. That can be done on savings.

Cost of living – Nomadic housesitters vs Homebased

These international housesitters and digital nomads spend time with the pets at home

But the cost of living of this lifestyle, as international housesitters, is a helluva lot less than living at home, or just staying in a fixed location, for us 70% less, for others even more!

So our suggestion is to work out your current annual living expenses, cut them in half (or more) and decide how much you need to earn if you don’t have enough saved or enough income from investments or pensions to cover that…
And if you need to keep earning, then look at how you can make money online – because there are gazillions of ways to earn from anywhere. We just prefer to focus on NOT having a remote job, instead being creative.
international housesitters
@HouseSitMatch #HouseSitChat hosted Fridays 10am (UK)

Housesitters – can anyone become one?

Q 4. How would you inspire this audience to “think out of the box” and embrace #HouseSitting?

@natnjodie#DigitalNomad #HouseSitChat
A 4. While housesitting is for anyone – singles, couples, families, young, mature, working, retired even people wanting to travel with their own pets… housesitting itself, is not for everyone. And as for travel it doesn’t always follow that housesitters international travel and petsitting all go together – you have to try and decide what works for you as international housesitters. #housesitchat
Some people just don’t like the idea of being in another person’s space, or at least they ‘think’ they don’t. We are firm believers that you will never really know something until you have a direct experience of it.
So if one half of a couple is keen to experience housesitting, the other maybe not be. Try helping out a home & pet owner nearby sometime. Take a short sit one weekend, and see how it really ‘feels’ before deciding 100% either way. And always trust your intuition!

International housesitters and digital nomads

Digital nomads can make great housesitters

Q 5. You have both achieved so much, but what is next? Are there any specific challenges for you as international housesitters?

@natnjodie #DigitalNomad #HouseSitChat 
A 5. We have done a lot for the house sitting community over the years with starting the first ever Facebook group for sitters to connect through to hosting the first virtual summit, the first version of the digital magazine…
The first podcast (just one season), the first video course teaching confidence & competence and every step of the international house sitting journey, published a kindle book.
Created a resource library for those looking for a Roaming Income with interviews and how-to’s from those already living this lifestyle.
The reason for it is Jodie is now helping others create a more leveraged income by offering licenses to sell our products. This is NOT an affiliate program where only a commission cut is earned.
And Nat has started a new project. With her sister she helps people live infinitely. By this they mean not letting anything hold you back from experiencing the life most normally only dream of. This is not just for international housesitters.
And get in touch with Jodie  @TravelLifePlan after you download the Travel Lifestyle Plan handbook which gives a lot a great exercises to get you ready for full-time travel.
Fancy becoming a digital nomad?
Want to try housesitting ? Sign up as a Housesitter with We’ll guide you through all the main preparatory steps, and you’ll find people to help you online in real time.

How get started as an international housesitter

If you are thinking of housesitting as a fun thing to try, then you need to think carefully about your next steps. So here are our top tips for getting started as an international housesitter:

  1. Join a small housesitting platform

Join one of the smaller housesitting sites such as HouseSitMatch. Posts on the larger sites can draw 30 or 40 applicants – daunting competition for a newbie!  But the smaller sites offer less competition and increased customer service that is often personalized.  I can attest to HouseSit Match’s unparalleled hands-on support. Also consider the option to become a house sitter for free.

It means you are volunteering and will exchange your services for free accommodation. The barrier is low to get started.

Other advantages of being with the right platform is they will have guidelines, templates and support documents to help you understand what best practice looks like. Make sure they have a responsive administration so you can ask questions about housesitting and petsitting. A good platform will support you in your endeavours.

  1. Start housesitting locally first – it will help you get started as a housesitter

get started as a housesitter
Look for local housesits to get started, whether it is for rabbit sitting or dog sitting ensure you are happy with your pet charges

While you might be asking yourself ‘ are house sitters in demand? ‘ you should start locally first.Looking for local housesitting jobs or house sitting jobs near me to get started. It gives you a chance to meet the homeowners and pets ahead of time. This gives you a “leg up” on sitters traveling from foreign countries. It is worth doing if you possibly can. Local housesitting is definitely a good way to get started as a housesitter.

Especially during these times when airlines are realigning their schedules, your proximity provides extra peace of mind for the homeowners that their sitters won’t get caught up in airline delays and cancellations. Also, since you know your area, language and culture, a local housesit reduces the variety of new things you need to adjust to. It is one of the best ways to get started as a housesitter.

3 Build a good reputation with good reviews

Make a significant effort with all your housesit assignments to ensure you earn good reviews on the housesitting platform. The reviews will soon build with every housesit and you’ll find it easier and easier to secure your preferred assignments and you’ll join the group of international housesitters.


Further reading about housesitting, pet sitting and international housesitters

At we like to share useful blogs and practical advice about housesitters, housesitting and pet sitting. We hope you find this small selection of our blogs on house sitters useful.

Housesitters keep pets safe at home and save money

What a housesitter does – Top 10 responsibilities

Preparing a home for a house or pet sitter

The Affordable Alternative to Dog Kennels

What is House Sitting?


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Founder and Director of HouseSitMatch - I'm a hands-on Admin on the site. Please ask any questions and as soon as I can I'll happily answer and assist where I can.

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