Thursday, August 6, 2009

The Caretaker Gazette: You too can live rent-free!

Back in May I wrote the post "5 Ideas for Rent-Free Living." The ideas ranged from being a Lighthouse Keeper to a Professional Housesitter.

At the time I truly had no idea we would actually become professional housesitters or "caretakers." Seriously. No idea! We were leaning more towards the living in an Airstream option (though it wasn't really an option because we didn't have an Airstream.)

My point is that we didn't know that we would end up signing a contract to be caretakers and live rent-free for 2 years on an island, but I did write about The Caretaker Gazette in that post and not long after I got my own subscription.

From their site:
"The GAZETTE provides its subscribers with thousands of house sitting and property caretaking jobs each year. We have housesitting jobs in all 50 US States, Canada, Mexico and dozens of other countries."

It costs $29.95 for an annual subscription where you get access to opportunities like this:


ESTATE CARETAKER needed. We are seeking a live-in caretaker for a gorgeous, private, riverfront estate near the Oregon coast. We will provide an apartment and all utilities (including phone, internet and satellite TV) plus a salary of $1,500 a month and a $150 vehicle expense. Applicants will need a background in grounds care, landscaping, home maintenance and housekeeping. You must be non-smoking, dependable and a caretaker who can work unsupervised. The property is located approximately 70 miles from Portland and 15 miles from the beach in Manzanita.

Sounds amazing, right? Not only do you get a place to live rent-free you get all your utilities covered AND a salary. Of course, this opportunity requires a work. It sounds like a full-time job. And is perfect for the right person.

Other opportunities that don't involve as much work usually don't come with a salary...but are still rent-free. And you can even find vacation opportunities. Once I came across a post that was advertising a cabin in Costa Rica near the beach for a week as long as you were willing to take care of the owner's dog. A free vacation spot for a dog-lover in Costa Rica.

This is beginning to sound like an infomercial for The Caretaker Gazette. I assure you, I am getting nothing out of posting this. No toasters involved, I swear. Only the satisfaction of sharing our good fortune. Our caretaking gig in the San Juan's didn't come from the Gazette, but it might have... as the owners were about to post a 'Caretaker Wanted' ad in the upcoming issue. Which will be available online to subscribers starting tomorrow.

So what are you waiting for? Sign up and find your rent-free paradise!

And if you have any other proven resources for housesitting/caretaking or rent-free living ideas, please share them in the comments section. Thanks!


Kim Hooper said...

Wow, I had no idea. That's pretty tempting. I know there are all kinds of ways to live, especially if you're willing to pick up and move! Free living AND a salary. Wow. That's pretty cool! I'm going to check out the gazette...

Carol said...

Thanks for writing about The Caretaker Gazette. They have the best website I have found for rent-free living. I used to pay $865/month in rent - and now I'm living rent-free as a result of housesitting opportunities from their site.

Cassie said...

So how did you find out about your San Juan Islands gig if not the Gazette? We are trying to crawl out of debt and have a small income. My husband works from home and just needs his laptop and an internet connection. We have been living in Ecuador (from Dallas, TX) for 2 1/2 months and have drastically cut our living expenses. I found your blog when I googled "live rent free" or something to that effect. I have also come across the Caretaker Gazette several times over a few years but haven't pulled the trigger and bought the subscription. I am thoroughly enjoying reading your blog. My google search took me to the entry on 5 ideas for Rent Free Living and I had to start reading your blog from the first. Thank you for being so transparent and positive. I know you have helped many.

Love in the Time of Foreclosure said...

Hey Cassie,
We found out about this gig through the blog. A LITTOF reader contacted us directly to see if we'd be interested in housesitting. It's actually a pretty cool story and you can read my post about it here:

As for the Caretaker Gazette... if you're seriously interested in finding housesitting/caretaking opportunities then it's so worth the price of a yearly membership. The opportunities are really inspiring and there are so many. In fact, had we said no to this opportunity, the owners of the house would have posted an ad in the caretaker gazette.

At the very least, just start putting the word out. You never know what will come your way.

Thanks for reading and commenting! -Steph

Don and Jill said...

My wife and I have been host/caretakers for the Forest Service for the past 11 years in a national forest recreation area which has a rental house and campground. This job has ended and we are now searching for another beautiful place to put our energies into.We are both in our 60's and retired. Caretaking is a great way to enjoy life without the pesky taxes and other costly hassles of property owning. This is just to let folks know that not only private property owners are looking for caretakers.

JP said...

Oh my goodness, this is right up my alley. find a great summer gig for my family of seven!! Wish me luck. (-: (Got your link from my longtime friend Porter Kelley after I was salivating over an island for sale of the shores of Canada).

JP said...

Aw, Porter...sorry..."Kelly" (-:

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