Rent out your home/castle when you go away—you’ll get both a house sitter and extra cash for your vacation.
TRAVEL ADVISORY | One major perk of being married to a university professor is that we can go on extended summer holidays when school is out. Last summer, our family took off for Europe, spending time in London, Paris and the south of France as well as all over Sweden. It was an expensive vacation, but we were able to offset the cost by renting out our house. For two months, a quiet and incredibly tidy family from Oman enjoyed a holiday in our city while helping us bankroll our good times abroad. We’ve done this for several years now, and overall, the transactions have been smooth. There are a few sites on which you can list your home (do a search for vacation rentals or holiday homes – you’ll have no trouble finding them), but we like SabbaticalHomes.com.
Though geared to the academic community, others are welcome to use Sabbaticalhomes.com. It costs $55 to post an ad ($35 if you’re an academic) and is entirely free to search for listings and reply to offers. If this is something you might be interested in doing, here’s a tip: renting out your house, even for a short term, is a lot like putting it up for sale. You will want to check out listings for other homes in your area to see the going rate then you’ll need to take good photos and write a detailed description of your home and neighbourhood. If you’re lucky, you’ll be entertaining multiple offers.
A more likely scenario is that you’ll have to consider dropping your price, but that’s okay too. After all, a bit of money towards your vacation budget beats the alternative: no money at all and, worse yet, having to shell out extra for a house sitter as well. —Natasha Muslih
For more information, visit sabbaticalhomes.com.