We recently sat in an Alexa connected condo. We just had to say, “ goodnight Alexa” and the shades were lowered, bedroom ceiling fan turned on and lights turned off. The homeowner told us to use anything in the cupboards or refrigerator and if it needed replacement just to tell Alexa to add it to their grocery list!
When we got home, I continued yelling Goodnight Alexa only to have my husband give me a multiple exasperated looks. So now, I can tell Alexa to change our thermostat and to turn on a lamp. Not quite an entire house of connectivity but it’s a start!
@petsit…what a great discovery! I find bird behavior to be so fascinating. The way they communicate with each other, the way they build their nests and the way they feed their babies. I have nine birdhouses in my backyard and one of my favorite times when on the back patio is just sitting with a glass of wine and observing them going in and out of their homes. I love hearing the new babies churping when mom/dad come back with worms.
I would absolutely love to hear what others have discovered while they are housesitting as well!
I’m currently staying in a house with reed diffusers on each floor plus plug-in fragrancers on each floor as well PLUS scented candles. I had to switch off the plug-ins and hide all the other fragrancers on day 1. I’ve been experiencing an allergic reaction to this overload of synthetic fragrancing chemicals: stuffed-up sinuses, sniffles, runny nose and I’ve now come out in rash. These chemicals are nasty, not just for those of us who are immediately sensitive to them. They have long-term health effects - just google side effects of fragrancers.
@Dace and @AllyMac I have a story about reed diffusers. When I was married, my husband loved them and we had them in the main sitting areas of our home. Then we left for a winter of house sitting (5 months) and had a sitter move in (no pets). She immediately put the reed diffusers away, and brought out her Lamp Berger. We returned to a gift of a beautiful Lamp Berger - a gorgeous cranberry-coloured glass - and she explained the concept. Initially designed more than a hundred years ago to purify the air in hospitals, it provides a healthy delicate fragrance of your choice, or can be used unscented.
My husband disliked the lamp and returned to using the reed diffusers. The lamp sat unused. He and I later separated, and you may guess the rest of the story. It was logical that I should keep the lamp, and I now use it and enjoy remembering our sitter.
I will mention that I have done a sit where I was given advance notice to not bring or use scented products in the home, because of the homeowner’s sensitivity to fragrances. They also reminded me before I left home. It’s easy for me to accommodate as I don’t like or use highly scented products. If you require any similar accommodation - as a homeowner or sitter - it’s good to remember to share that information, so that everyone can be comfortable.
Yes, fragrance sensitivity is something I’m now going to add to my profile. In over 6 years of house sitting, it’s never been a problem as it’s just been one or two fragrancers which I could switch off or hide. On this last sit though it was overload with at least one in every room/hall/cupboard! Plus the house is a new-build with new furnishings which wouldn’t have helped.
Fascinating gadget on my last sit that really increased my awareness. In the kitchen counter top there was an electronic meter that indicated the current wattage consumption and it displayed where you were in the weekly budget. I loved it because it became like a game. When I arrived it was the last day of the week and the wattage was over the weekly budget. So every day I was able to see where I was on keeping to the budget.
It was very cool and I am happy to say I stayed below budget
@Amparo I agree that’s amazing. Mine is definitely not as cool, but I have lots of information I can access on my online electricity bill. Homeowners choose rates set by either time-of-day use or a flat rate. Here’s my flat rate for a recent day, and it’s easy to see trends.
The fun part is I was on house sits part of April and most of May. Don’t you love the difference in my electric bill? Sadly it only makes about $15 (£10) difference as most of the charges are flat-rate delivery fees.