Sitters: time-savers?

I might start packing my own bed linens and towels, so I save time doing laundry before leaving sits. I could wash them at my leisure when I get home. Sometimes windows are tight before you leave a sit for the airport or such and there’s limited time to wash, dry, make a bed or fold linens. Some sits don’t even have dryers, or they have inefficient dryers.

Sitters, do you have suggestions for other ways to save time when cleaning or otherwise prepping a host’s home for your departure?


As a sitter, if it’s a short sit such as a weekend, I ask the homeowner what size bed they have and do bring my own bed linens - definitely saves time. So much quicker to bring my own bed linen home and wash at my place. I always bring my own towels too - never use the homeowners towels. I tend to bring some of my own cleaning supplies as well. I’ve done sits where I couldn’t find windex, sponges or any cleaning supplies that I like to use.


I ask the homeowners to strip the bedding as I will bring my own. I have all sizes and that way, no bedding to wash on departure day. I also bring my own hand and bath towels. i may still use theirs but I wash all towels the day before departure and on the day of departure, only use our towels. Then I wash all our dirty towels and linens as soon as we arrive at the next house.


I’m travelling full time so can’t carry round bed linen. I’ve never had a problem as, if there’s no time to wash the bed linen I’ve explained to the owners and it’s not been an issue. The scenarios I’ve had so far are: wash, dry, iron bed linen and remake bed (when I’ve had all day before leaving); wash the linen and leave it drying outside for owners to deal with and remake bed with other linen; strip the bed and leave for owners. All with owners’ knowledge.
Not difficult so why make such an issue? Just need to communicate with owners who are normally understanding.


Not a big issue. I have plenty of linens and travel pretty light, so I have room. Plus, it would be pleasant to sleep on nice, clean sheets of my choice. Nothing wrong with easily adding to my own comfort.

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I tend to do the deep kitchen clean the day before departure, and then touch up on the day of departure. Part of this is going through the fridge, throwing things away and washing the containers. I walk around the home and outside, and take care of anything that can be done the day before departure, like sweeping a deck or patio or walkway. Pack my bags as much as possible. Wash car and fill with gas. Go to grocery store for items for Owner, write a note to Owner the day before departure. Dust.

Writing this makes me think about how much we do for Owners. We spend most of the last 2 days cleaning.


@Smiley @PVGemini we do the same as you both. We also have our own checklist on the phone that we tick off as each does an “exit” cleaning chore.


We travel full time. I ask the HO to show me where the spares are or throw them in the wash when they make up the bed for me. I make up the bed before we leave and the ones we use are either in the hamper, machine, drying, or folded depending on time permitting. We tend to recycle the same cutlery and crockery and wash immediately rather than have to wait for full dishwashers. Bathrooms get scrubbed the day before with a quick disinfect as I walk out the door so they smell (and are) sparkling clean. Floors done the day before with a quick sweep/vacuum/mop if needed before we leave. We are no shoes in the house and do mainly cats so usually no last minute messes.


Yes, I try to do everything the day before and use a checklist so I don’t forget anything. I wear house slippers indoors.

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I have not done laundry of bedclothes, and I get five stars for “cleanliness” anyway. Six times already. Completely undeserved stars.

Often I make a bit of a deal now. A few days before arrival, I ask the HO if they have seen all those threads on this forum about cleaning and I tell them not to stress too much about cleaning at hotel standard, no need to do deep cleaning for my sake. For them that feels as a relief then, in the days that they are packing for their vacation.

That way I have the chance to leave the place a tiny bit cleaner than when they left it, without spending too much effort.

Funny, because on my current sit, the HO told me a couple of times that they’d clean and leave me extra sheets and towels. They just seemed thoughtful.

At my last sit, there were three guest rooms and the extra sheets and towels were readily available. The house cleaners also would change the sheets if I wanted my room cleaned.

I might get a new set of high-count sheets for sits. Spoil myself, LOL.

I notice on the owner’s pre-sit checklist about washing pet bedding and my current owner had done that the day I arrived. Do you also do this as sitters pre-departure? Obviously length of sit will affect this too.

I either do the sheets the day I leave or I put them in the washer, set to start washing, for when the HO returns. I don’t start the wash unless I’m still there, because if they’re delayed, damp laundry can end up smelling bad if it sits. I haven’t gotten any specific requests for bedding care or such. The HOs I’ve sat for have all been pretty easygoing. They care mostly that their pet(s) are well looked after.

I don’t do long sits, so pet bedding hasn’t been a thing. I shake out their beds, but that’s about it.

Your fancy ‘sitter-sheets’ - hubby can only dream of using them…these are yours only :slight_smile:

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I saw that re washing the pet bedding, as a pet owner of cats I’d have to wash the entire house!

I don’t think I’ve seen what cat bedding looks like other than some cushions. The sit I’m at, the cat has mostly been sitting / sleeping on my bed. He has cushions, but they don’t look washable and there’s no dryer, so it wouldn’t be possible to leave him with dry bedding. He doesn’t go outside, so he stays clean.

I’m amazed by how much he sheds. I comb him daily and there’s tons of loose hair. I sweep the flat and there’s more. I bet I could stuff a cushion with his offerings, LOL. Maybe I’ll end up with a hairless cat by the end of our sit!

I’ve only done that a couple of times. Not all owners would want that but if their beds are obviously dirty I would

Well, in Switzerland there are no washing machines in the house, so problem solved. I would never think of washing bed sheets after my stay, it doesn’t seem like a custom in Europe, but good to know in case I ever make it to US😬

my cats fire hair in all directions! I brush them they still expel hair everywhere! That’s why I always warn my sitters the house is clean but may be hairy :joy:

Hi @MagdaB you might need to start rethinking that now that you’re a housesitter! Please do a search on the forum for sheets and see the lively conversation around it.

We would always, always wash our sheets, before leaving, unless specifically instructed not to. It is considered to be polite to have the HO return to clean sheets.