What to include in "house manual" or "welcome guide"

Hi everyone, anyone has advise in what to write about for the sitters? I started a document and then could not decide what was enough and what may be more than needed. Is there a template some place, something with trigger questions perhaps? Thank you in advance!


The welcome guide provides these triggers.
As a sitter though I don’t know where you find it…

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Hi @leila-paul. As @JackieX advises, there is indeed a template within the dashboard that will guide you through all the different categories of information that will help your sitters once you’ve selected someone for your sit.

If you go to your dashboard, you’ll see a box that says Edit Welcome Guide…

This will guide you through the process, and becomes an invaluable resource for sitters with all the information they might need about the property, the pets, the location. You can always supplement this with other information you feel is relevant, but as a sitter, having this information in advance is so very helpful. It also helps prompt any questions that might arise for the pre-sit chat or at handover.

You may find that some members will give you suggestions of other useful information not covered in the guide, but it is pretty comprehensive as a starting point.

If you need anymore help with this, don’t hesitate to ask. All the best!


Hello @leila-paul,
As a sitter I would advise you to use the guidelines from the Welcome Guide AND to print a hard copy to let in the house. We have already discuss about that in this forum and lots of sitters agreed to say it was handy to have a hard copy so when it is time to get the bin outside you don’t have to check your phone, log in your account and scroll on your dashboard to find which bin you have to take out, what time of the day and in which corner of the village you have to leave it (when it is a village for exemple)… Thank you for preparing a complete Welcome Guide it is always highly appreciated.


that’s awesome - thank you!

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thank you so much for your feedback, that is very helpful!

thank you - just got the link!

I have read and reread as many of the threads as I could find on what the sitter will need while she is her. I think I have it covered for the most part. My one question is a list for the sitter of specifics…wifi, trash day, where laundry soap is etc., but what are some thing I should include in this list? Please and thank you for all of your help.

Hello @Ladygreynius and thank you for submitting your question which we’ve moved to a similar topic to hopefully re-engage members on this topic.

The “welcome guide” (accessible on your dashboard) provides good prompts for the typical types of things a sitter will need, and it includes many items like Wifi codes. It also has a section where you can set on-sit reminders for trash/rubbish collection days or other items.

When we arrive at sits we often find that owners have created a supplemental document that contains more detail and is more personalized, so this is a great question to expand on from a sitter’s perspective. Maybe this thread can be a definitive list of items.

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Hi @Ladygreynius
If you complete the Welcome Guide rather than a Word doc, it would be extremely helpful if you would print it off for the sitter and have it ready upon their arrival. A sitter cannot print it off and has to copy and paste onto a word document or photograph it all.
Thanks very much

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I have been looking at various similar topics around this subject. While I understand that there needs to be a decent amount of information so the sitters can make an informed choice as to whether they want to apply for a sit, I am finding that the more I add on, the more the information is getting overlooked or not being read.
I have mentioned in a previous reply that I have too many pictures of my pets. The forms request that a picture per pet is required and that is all I have put.
I have mentioned that we are unsuitable for small children. This has been overlooked.
I have now mentioned that we cannot take dogs/pets who come with house sitters.
We have a large house and gardens and this will only suit a very few people that won’t be daunted by such a sit. We would always do a video call first and if local we would invite someone to visit before any decision is made so the sitter can change their mind if they feel it is too much. Sometimes I think that a discussion about the sit can benefit so much more that information people don’t always read.
We were incredibly lucking to have had the most amazing sitters last year.

Thank you @Vanessa-ForumCMgr. The document on arrival is definitely the best for us. There is so much to write down it is far better for us to provide documents on arrival. We tend to be here as well so we can go through everything. We have separate documents for animals, house, garden etc.

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I am filling in my welcome guide which asks if I have a first aid kit. I have dressings, bandages, ointments, pain killers, plasters, thermometers etc, but what should I have to have a first aid kit?

What is inside of a first aid kit is usually standard all over the world. So everybody can expect to find the same things.

As first aid kits for cars expire after some time (but the stuff inside is perfectly fine) I replace it by purchasing a new one for the car and keep the other one for the house.

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I don’t have a first aid kit for sitters. I have tons of stuff and my Welcome Guide tells them where to find everything in the bathroom drawers.

In the UK, legally, you have to be really careful what you put in a first aid kit - ironically pain killers are definitely not allowed! - If you want to leave one the safest way is to buy one that is ready filled, They are not expensive and most pharmacists will sell them.


I agree with @Colin. When I was first putting together my Welcome Guide, and saw the mention of the first aid kit, I figured it would be very hard for a sitter to find all my sundry first aid items in my medicine cabinet, so I simply bought a first aid kit at the pharmacy and I put it on the shelf in my laundry room and I say in the Welcome Guide that that is where it will be found. I don’t use it, I just keep it there for my sitter to find quickly and easily. I am also a sitter and I don’t like going through the homeowner’s personal items, particularly in their medicine cabinet. I wish more homeowners would provide a first aid kit that is there specifically for the sitter.


That’s why I use the one originally made for cars. No painkiller, nothing that’s not allowed and I don’t have to tell people where to find each single item in the house.


Whatever you put in the Welcome Guide will, I am sure, be much appreciated. I’m on a sit now and the Welcome Guide for it is fabulous! We read it 3 or 4 times before the sit and we’ve referenced it during the sit.

And I’m sure your Welcome Guide will evolve over time. Each question your sitter asks you via text? That could get preemptively answered in the Welcome Guide for the next time? It’ll evolve and grow over time.

Obviously the Welcome Guide needs to cover the basics including how to maintain your home (where the water shutoff is, where the cleaning supplies are, where the pet food is, etc. etc. etc.)

Beyond the basics, it’s great to have some neighborhood “fun” information: a restaurant or two? Any “tricks or treats” to the locale that only locals know :slight_smile: The grocery stores you favour, etc.

Can I ask what happens if HOs don’t do a welcome guide but they make up their own doc? Shouldn’t it go through a central system or be a set format? “Extra” info and tasks have been added during our current sit as if we should have known they exist and were always our responsibility :flushed: I have no idea where a first aid kit is or even if there is one on our current house sit. We’re almost done and most of it has been great, especially the animals, but I’ve felt constantly on the back foot. Advice please? And I really don’t want a bad review after going above and beyond either :crossed_fingers: