Cars for sitters

@Lokstar May I ask how difficult/easy it was to resell? I spend about 6-7 months a year in Europe and am really thinking that I want to buy a car there.

@Edith We bought our (old) car in UK (i.e UK registered) and sold it in Germany to a dealer for parts. It was easy because the dealer did not need any paperwork. Selling the car to a private person outside of UK would have been challenging because of the car being RHD and Brexit issues- inport fees etc. We could have sold privately in UK before leaving, perhaps for a little more, but we needed to get back to Germany anyway with all our stuff so driving made more sense.
If you able to buy within the EU (not UK) it might be more straightforward with insurance on the continent.


Thank you so much for the info @Lokstar. I’ll definitely put in some research about this. If it weren’t for the car issues, I’d happily gallivant in and out of Schengen.

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What’s your nationality? @Edith
The EU includes more countries than just Schengen countries. But UK ofcourse is completely out!

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I’m US. I go to France for three months every year to escape the New York winters. Last year I followed that up with three months in the UK and Ireland. Petsitting makes that affordable, but the car rental prices are brutal! How did you find a dealer to buy your car?

Well my husband is German so we did a mixture of driving around to second hand dealers in Germany and advertising on Facebook market place, Ebay etc. Not much interest because it was UK rhd. Originally looked on FB groups for Brits in Germany who might like it to drive back to takers. Then tried to sell to traders for export. Eventually just sold for parts. Obviously you only want to do that with a cheap car! But in our case it was more than worth it after 9 months extreme usage!


Brilliant. Just brilliant.

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Hi we are TH newbie’s and wondered about sitters using our car. We didn’t list it as available as most amenities are walkable to and there is also a bus/train service. What are peoples experiences regarding requests for use of car and did they have insurance issues?
Thanks :pray:

Hi @Forresterjj and welcome to the forum. If everything is walkable or easily reached by public transport, that will probably satisfy most sitters and they will not need use of a vehicle. You could consider mentioning that your car may be available and decide on a case by case basis.

As a sitter I have driven owner’s cars in the US and UK and all has gone without a glitch. In the US the car is insured for anyone who drives it, so the owner does not have to pay extra to insure the sitter. In the UK, it is my understanding that the driver must be insured. The owner paid to add me to their insurance. I have also heard that some UK insurers will not insure drivers who are over age 70.

I would, of course, cover the cost of the deductible should the vehicle be damaged while in my possession. If you offer use of your car, it would be good to discuss the deductible cost prior to confirming the sit. I also want to mention that I return the car clean and with a full tank of gas/petrol, whether I received it that way or not.

Regardless of what you choose to do, offering use of your car will make your listing more attractive. Fyi, I have sat for a number of HO who offered use of their car but it was not needed as I had my own car.

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Thank you for the information Mars

@Forresterjj We are sitters and HOs. As HOs, we do not allow use of car, except if there would be an emergency. In our searches as sitters, we don’t find “use of car” to be common.

While we do read that some people have no issues with it, here are things to consider, if in the US and a boo boo occurs:

We’d have to add a person to our insurance–a person whom we have no idea what their driving habits are. Further, we don’t even know what the sitter’s home base is so if they incur a fender bender while using our car, how do we get them to pay the our high deductible? And finally, even if they do pay that, the accident goes on our record and our insurance rates go up.

Overall, to us, it is not worth the risk or cost of allowing “use of car.”

This is an exchange of free lodging for free pet/house sitting.

So you have to consider what you are willing to do.

Thank you for your advice

@Forresterjj as a sitter I would suggest you only offer use of your car if it is really needed to drive the dogs to a preferred walking place. If the dogs can be walked from the door and public transport, as you say, is easily available then there is no need. When sitting in the UK with our own car we don’t use our car for the dogs as we generally live out of it, especially on short sits when we don’t want to fully unload. We try to apply only for sits where dogs can be walked from the door. On a couple of occasions, after application, we’ve discovered a car IS needed for the dogs and each time the owner has put me on their insurance for the duration. But in those cases we use their car only for dog walks and our own car for everything else.
We’ve also been offered use of car for sits when the hosts have needed driving to and from the airport. This was especially useful on one sit where we ourselves were flying in and it saved us a car rental. In fact that sit was an invitation and the car was a great selling point!
A car is always a luxury for a sitter that does not have one. Some sitters will be happy if a car is included. Others will not want the extra responsibility! Equally some hosts are very relaxed and others are nervous about the extra risk. It depends also on your car. If its an old banger and you don’t care about it then offer away! Whatever you do make sure you feel comfortable with your choice! Cars are not expected but they can be an extra bonus & enticement if you struggle to find a sitter.

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Thanks for your reply :blush:

Car hire makes most sits prohibitively expensive and therefore untenable…

Two questions

  1. Have you ever asked an HO if you can use one of their cars?

  2. Why are HO loath to have their car as part of the arrangement?

Car sharing is always part of a house exchange arrangement.

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HI @anna22, welcome to the forum! we’re happy to have you here. I have merged your topic with this thread where members have gone over this particular topic and you might find their feedback helpful

Many home owners may only have one car! I need mine for my trips away so for my sitters it’s public transport - have never had a problem finding sitters, last year I had 2 couples from the USA.

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If I’m on holiday in the UK (where I live) there is a good chance I’m using it myself.

Not everyone owns a car (particularly in cities with good public transport) so it cant be true that car sharing is ‘always’ part of a house exchange. And in any case we’re not exchanging houses through THS.

Absolutely it is NOT part of this exchange. We are HOs and sitters and know that it is uncommon. This deal is free lodging in exchange for free pet-house sitting. It is not house-swapping.


I think the availability of the homeowner’s car is the exception rather than the rule. I have been a sitter for 10 years and have never assumed a car would be available and it seems to be quite a recent topic on here.
The exchange is pet care for accommodation.
Occasionally a homeowner will include the use of a car as a ‘sweetener’ if their listing is in a not so desirable area or if the expectation is for the sitter to regularly take the dog(s) for exercise away from the local area.