Pricing Guide for House/Pet sitting
[Many of my "Basic Service" rates have gone up by $5-$10, though anyone already booked prior will get the old prices.]
Note: Due to the nature of pet sitting, many people book weeks and months in advance and a booked date held in good faith that is cancelled (or changed to reduce time) at the last minute is very unlikely to be filled. For this reason, I ask for half payment for bookings cancelled with fewer than 72 hours remaining before they were to begin.
My main service is overnight pet and house sitting. (I'm a writer, which I do anywhere there's wifi and a three pronged plug). I technically offer other services, but their pricing structures are less competitive as they consume more of my writing time.
(I stay there pretty much most of the time when I’m not at work including overnight. I take care of pets. I keep the house from looking empty. Please note that I do have another job and occasionally even a social life, so while I will come back and be at your home for hours a day as well as sleep there, I may be gone anywhere from four to nine hours a day.)
V. Local- $25/day
Short Range- $30/day
Mid Range- $30/day
Long Range- $35/day
Max Range- $35/day
While I personally have no problem with anyone's life or life choices, my ability to sleep is limited where there might be strong odors (particularly 420, heavy incense, or noticeable thirdhand smoke). Apologies in advance. It's not you. It's the cilia in my lungs.
(I'll stay several hours to keep animals company but will not stay overnight Note: due to the the drive back and forth, this is actually more expensive at the greater distances than housesitting and it may be cost effective to have me stay.)
V. Local- $20/day
Short Range- $25/day
Mid Range- $35/day
Long Range- $45/day
Max Range- $60/day*
Drop in visit:
(Feed the cats, fish, birds, dogs that don’t need company, water plants etc...maybe sit down for a few minutes while they eat)
V. Local- $15/day
Short range- $20/day
Mid range- $30/day
Long range- $45/day
Max range- $60/day*
Double Drop In:
(I'll take care of animals need to be fed twice daily. I'll visit once in the morning and once in the evening.)
V. Local- $30/day
Short range- $40/day
Mid range- $60/day
Long range- N/A**
Max range- N/A**
24 Hour Supervision:
(For very short periods of time, I can cover situations that basically require constant supervision. [An injured or an ill pet for example.] Note: I do have another job that pays hourly, and I will have to coordinate my schedule, so as much notice as possible is absolutely critical. Subject to limits.)
V. Local- $110/day
Short Range- $115/day
Mid Range- $120/day
Long Range- $125/day
Max Range- $130/day
*I know a lot of people will pay for a known and trusted quantity, but I feel like I would be remiss not to mention that a local pet-sitter would probably charge a lot less.
**Theoretically I'm willing to do these jobs (and you can probably just look and figure out how much it would be for to make it worth it for me to spend that much time on the road), but I'm worried they would be prohibitively expensive for most people compared to literally any other options. Still if that's not a problem, feel free to inquire about those rates.
Additions–please consider all that might apply
High energy/high attention pets: +$20/day (please read)
The reason my rates are so cheap is because for most jobs, I'm just THERE while I do the writing I would be doing anyway. I provide extra scritches, loose supervision, and maybe a lap during the day or a snuggle at night. I might be gone for a few hours to my other job or pop away for a social event in the evening, and I kind of just continue my life uninterrupted from your house.
However the nature of this job is that I often get asked to watch exactly the sort of pets that can't just be fed by a neighbor once a day. And that's okay, but it also takes me away from my writing.
Even if there isn't a specific feeding or meds or walking regimen that takes extra time, please consider if your pet is (or the aggregate of multiple pets are) just sort of high on the attention/supervision needs. Do they need to be watched or they'll start to chew up/get into/pee on everything? Are they going to have a hard time if I'm gone for a few hours a day? Do they need to be crated if someone isn't there and thus would be cooped up for hours during the day if I went to my other job? Do they need food or medicine at a couple of very specific times that are really hard to work around? This isn't the same as 24 hour supervision (above), but if your pet(s) need a little more, I have to charge a little more too. (I find this is particularly true of large dogs, though not exclusively or absolutely.)
This doesn't mean I will never leave–that's 24 hour supervision (above)–but it does reflect (an) animal(s) that need(s) a little more time and attention.
This cost is included and assumed in 24 hour supervision. It does not need to be added in again.
Dog needs a walk, cat has complicated medicine routine, two or more litter boxes that need scooping every single day, about five to fifteen minutes worth of extra routine
24 Hour Supervision: Included
Long stay: +$5
Drop in visit: +$5
Double Drop In: +$5 (if mild care is needed once) +$10 if mild care is needed during both visits
Multiple animals needing mild care, dog needing a long walk [30min+] or more than one walk, more than three cage-free pets, etc...
Long stay: +$10
Drop in visit: +$10
Double Drop In: +$10 (if heavy care is needed once) +$20 if heavy care is needed during both visits
24 Hour Supervision: Included
Bridge Toll surcharge:
(For locations across bridges from the East Bay)
Long stay: +$5
Drop in visit: +$5
Double Drop In: +$10
24 Hour Supervision: Included
No Wifi: +$10/day
Wifi is critical to my writing work, and involved in 95% of what I do when I'm not working (even the video games I use to blow off steam), so if you don't have wifi, I'm going to end up at a local cafe every time I want to post a blog. Note that I absolutely cannot do 24 Hour Supervision at a location with no wifi unless you are having a stone-cold life-event emergency and don't know who else to call.
Last Minute Booking:
Jobs booked with less than 24 hours until they begin. Exception made for bereavement travel.
V. Local- +$10
Short Range- +$20
Mid Range- +$30
Long Range- +$40
Max Range- +$50
Note: This addition is not "per day." It's just a one time surcharge for the initial inconvenience. If I am able to take the job, I can handle scheduling after the first day. Please be aware that my availability is not guaranteed.
Pool care/Plant care/Caged or tank pet care:
Please consider how quickly a few things you do as routine every day and a few more you do every other day begin to add up.
Easy periodic maintenance (average <15 min/day) +$5/day
Involved or daily maintenance (average 15-30 min/day) +$10/day
Heavy maintenance: $20/hr
Sometimes we work out a quote in good faith and then it's not quite accurate. Maybe your low maintenance pet becomes high maintenance when they're stressed that you're not there and start to chew everything or pee in the corners. Or maybe the internet goes out and you can't do anything about that while you're on vacation. If a discrepancy from quote to reality comes up I will assume good faith, mention it, and let you handle it based on your budget and best judgement. (A $20 per day surcharge on a 10 day job is not something everyone can just afford–especially in times like these and particularly right after a vacation.) However, depending on the circumstances, it will likely be reflected in any future quotes.
Of course I clean up after myself and if I stay more than a couple of nights, I'll wash any linens I've used if there is a washing machine available, but if you want more cleaning done, I can do that as well. Go on vacation and come home to a clean place! I will need to see the job to give a quote.
Light cleaning- $20/hr
Heavy/deep cleaning- $25/hr
I will need to see the job to give a quote.
Light yard work- $25/hr
Heavy yard work- $30/hr
Do you need a ride to or from the airport? Does someone need a ride while you're gone? Do you need a package delivered, mail dropped off, or something similar?
Driving services- $20/hr + 50¢/mile
Long job discount:
Jobs booked for eleven days or more will get a free day every tenth day. Base Cost only–Does not include "Additions" or "Other Services." Note: Due to schedule planning this is a "bundle" discount for long-term jobs and does not apply to extending the job after booking.
Repeat customer/no key meeting: ($10)
If you've already booked with me and I know the ins and outs of your place and your pets, and if we can figure out a way (or a time) to get me the key that doesn't involve a separate trip, I will take off ten dollars from the final amount of an overnight job of 2+ days.
I can take checks or Paypal or Venmo, but if you hand me cash, I'll knock off 5%.
Food in the fridge:
I usually buy a lot of Trader Joe's frozen dinners before a job, but I'm a sucker for a home cooked meal–especially with lots of vegetables–and have a weakness for junk food. We can talk about what things I might like and how much of a discount I'd give, but it can go as high as $10/day.
Most discounts tend to be more personal and less easy to anticipate. I've given small discounts for everything from allowing overnight guests to having the latest console hooked up to a big screen TV with a game I'm excited to try.