My location-independent freelance writing lifestyle lets me house-sit in San Francisco, Santa Cruz, and other northern California and world locations.
I love to travel to interesting places — to experience different local cultures, to see different local geographies. And I also love living in my rural corner of the world near Mount Shasta in far northern California.
And since I make my living primarily as a freelance writer, I can easily do both.
Here’s how I do it. My life partner Stephanie and I have set up a website that helps us get house-sitting jobs in northern California. If you click over to the site I created — HouseSit.info — you’ll see that we primarily do it during the cold winter months so we can get out of the snowy mountains were we live and get down to the much warmer and milder climes of San Francisco, Santa Cruz, and nearby Bay Area spots. However, we love San Francisco so much that we often house-sit there in other seasons.
The short-and-sweet one-page website helps a lot. Note that we build rapport and authority, and we use a mix of text and pictures to sell ourselves. The site has brought us several quality offers, but so far we’ve gotten the majority of our gigs through word-of-mouth.
Over the last year-plus we’ve house-sat in a stunning two-story home in Bernal Heights in San Francisco for nearly 8 weeks, including a 3-week stretch last October. Here’s my freelance-writing workspace…
And the view when I’m sitting…
And looking out the window toward downtown…
I’m definitely a country mouse, but the one city I truly love is San Francisco. It’s a kaleidoscope of the world’s cultures, all within walking distance. And just being in San Francisco gives my creativity a major boost.
Some other places Stephanie and I have house-sat recently:
- Santa Cruz, CA
- Soquel, CA
- Scotts Valley, CA
- Redding, CA
- Ashland, Oregon
And we’re expanding our range to select southern California and Arizona locations, and even to long-term house-sits abroad.
Why do people want us in their homes? Usually they have a dog or cat and they need a pet sitter. We don’t charge as long as it’s a quality home in a good neighborhood and we don’t have much more to do than take care of the pet, get the mail, and clean up after ourselves. It’s a win-win.
How do you manage your livelihood and travel? Have you done much house-sitting? What would you do if you had a location-independent lifestyle?