A typical house sit handover - what does it involve?

For anyone new to house and pet sitting, you’ll likely be wondering how and when you ask all those questions you want answering at the beginning of your sit. There will be lots of opportunity to chat with the pet parents or home owners before the sit starts, and hopefully they will have shared a helpful welcome guide too. But there’s nothing like that moment when you arrive, connect with your new furry friend, and get the in-person low down for a smooth transition into your temporary new home.

To help you remember all the things to check out and ask, here’s a new blog to help you make the most of your first and subsequent handovers.

And for more reading head over to a thread where our members give their tips for some of the less obvious handover questions:

Is there anything you do on a handover that others may benefit from hearing about?


HO, even if things seem self-explanatory to you, it is very helpful to your sitter if you have everything spelled out in your Welcome Guide or in the printed info you have left in your home for your sitter, such as exactly how your TV remote controls work, what gets recycled in which cans, where extra bags are kept, etc. When the HO gives me the tour, I still find myself forgetting certain things I was shown. What would be really awesome is if you were able to leave a folder with instruction manuals that came with various devices and appliances in your home.

If you’re like me, Google will become your best friend. I needed it to learn how to operate and clean an induction range and how to charge, empty the dust bin and troubleshoot two vacuum cleaners. I am sure my HO showed me where her frying pans were-they were in some unusual spot, but it’s almost time to leave and I never found them! I hate to bother the HO with picayune questions so I just make do.


I absolutely will be there the night before or early in the morning depending their leaving time. I like the guide printed in my hand with my questions. Blind going in a house perhaps I have done once or twice. I don’t feel comfortable. They are a lot of things involved. Not always animals are comfortable. I love to be friends with them as soon I walk in.

@mars Your post made me feel better about the level of detail I give sitters. We live in a small place but my welcome guide details everything I could possibly think they would need. I also have 3 videos on youtube that I send them links for: feeding our cat, our cats favorite activities and how to lower our outdoor shade. Even with all that I still like to have an hour or more with the sitter, not just to walk thru but to get to know them.

I am glad sitters appreciate the level of detail I go through.