Many of us who love to travel have a home that we care about, pets we love as if they were children and also plants that we nurture. All these things enhance our homes, but prove difficult to take care of while we’re away for an extended period.
Here are some tips on how to take care of your beloved 3Ps:
First, let’s assume that it’s not convenient to ask your friends or family to visit your home regularly enough to care for its ongoing needs while you’re away. Fortunately, there are now many solutions for your all too common situations.
If you have no pets, you can have somebody stay at your place and even earn money for it! And believe me, every host is comfortable with watering your plants, it’s only a little favor to ask for. If you can’t arrange meeting your guests in person, either leave a key somewhere safe and secret or ask a neighbor/friend to hand the keys over to them.
In case you’ve never heard of Airbnb, you can read about it here: Airbnb: What, Why, How? (more from a guest’s perspective)
Airbnb – you’ll get some credit if you sign up via this link
House-sitting comes in handy for when you’ve got pets. Be it cats, dogs, horses, chickens.. it doesn’t matter, there are always people who are comfortable caring for your pets and would like the opportunity to visit your city or village especially if the cost of accommodation is basically free. Some owners ask their house-sitters to pay the utilities bill, but I wouldn’t worry about it too much, it’s more hassle than worth. It’s common to ask for basic maintenance of the place (pool, garden) and to keep it clean. There are several websites through which you can find guests and each of them has certain security measures. You should, however, always arrange at least a Skype call with your potential visitor. And of course your pets should be of the type that is comfortable with strangers.MindMyHouse website HouseCarers website
General hacks and tricks
Generally speaking, you should take some standard precautionary measures like turning off water supply and all power outlets. If you’ll be away for a considerable amount of time you should have someone collect your mail to prevent your mailbox from filling up too much. Also timed power outlets can turn lamps/TV on for a few hours a day to help make it look like the apartment is not empty.
If you’re travelling for less than 2 weeks, your plants should be able to survive quite easily. For a vegetable / herb garden that you might have outside on a balcony or a windowsill, you can use self-watering pots. For indoor plants, you can move them from their sunny spots into an area with less sun and water them well before your departure.
With the boom of social media, burglars are becoming more refined and can learn about your being away by your excited announcement of going for a vacation. If you have the need to let your circle of friends know, at least keep your profile accessible only to friends.
Do you have any other home care tips to add? If so, I’d love to hear about them!