How I Lived in Million Dollar Homes for Free

house sitting

For nine years I lived in million dollar homes for free and it is something that anyone who is neat and conscientious can easily do. My junior year in college, a professor who I had assisted received a year long sabbatical to live in a foreign country. During that time, he needed someone to housesit his house and asked me if I would be willing to do it. I paid no rent although I did need to pay for utilities. All that was required of me was to do some basic house and garden maintenance and keep the place clean.

On the recommendation of the junior year house sitting job, I received another year of free rent my senior year from a professor doing a teacher exchange for a year. Upon graduating


[Continue Reading at]

This entry was posted in Frugal, Housing, Personal Finance and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

21 Responses to How I Lived in Million Dollar Homes for Free

  1. Alexandria says:

    I’d have no desire, personally, to live that lifestyle as an adult. But for more nomadic types it really is a great deal. Good for you!

    I house sat a lot in college. Contributed heavily to me being able to get through with no debt. Even though I did live in a very expensive area, I never paid much for rent.

  2. debra says:

    I wish I had thought of doing something like this when I was younger. Now that I’m married and have kids I don’t think it’s realistic, but I could have saved a lot of money if I had known about this and I think I would have enjoyed it.

  3. Hilary says:

    What did you do if there was a gap between one housesitting job and another? Did you get a hotel or stay at a friend’s house or something?

    Why haven’t these people ever heard of renting out their furnished home? My mom is a professor, and she has both rented out her house when on leave, and also rented another professors house while on sabbatical. There’s really no difference except that in one situation, they get paid!

  4. none says:

    I try to live simply. I guess I don’t think of simple living as that of living in a super-sized home regardless of whether it’s free to live there or not.

  5. bilks says:

    I think it helps to have a network of contacts. I have done this once in the past, but would have never been able to do it if other people hadn’t hooked me up. I put word out I was looking for a place to stay cheaply when the opportunity arose. It was for 6 months, but worked out great.

  6. xinecho says:

    What Hilary said also puzzled me.In the city I live in, people always rent out their unused apartment.

  7. Wendi says:

    I wish I had known about this when I was younger!

  8. S. Shugars says:

    Yes, many people rent out there homes, but there are also people that don’t want to rent out their homes. If you have ever rented your house, you will know that people don’t necessarily take care of it very well. In fact, they can leave it looking quite bad. For those that can afford it, having someone that they can trust and know will take good care of the house is a better option (and why it is usually expensive properties that are available for house sitting – the owners have the money)

  9. Lisa says:

    Just wondering? Utilities in a million dollar house can be expensive, how did you pay those and save for a home? Living in a 3/4 million house in my area can run 500-700. I’ve even heard 900.

  10. S. Shugars says:

    Yes, utilities are more expensive due to the size of the house, but still well below what I would have been paying in rent even in a small place. Like anything, it depends how you approach it. I never heated the entire house. Only those rooms where I spent my time. The same with cooling the house in the summer. They could have been a lot more if I didn’t care.

  11. Pingback: The Eight Little Pigs-Festival of Frugality #130 « To Be Debt Free

  12. Pingback: » Festival of Frigality #130 Is Up on the Festival of Frugality

  13. JOhn thomas says:

    Wow, I am impressed. Sounds quite logical to me.

  14. Luke says:

    Who is Mr. Shugars? Anybody notice that his initials are B.S.?

  15. TopWaysToSave says:

    Luke, his initials were S.S not B.S.

  16. Lola says:

    I’ve subscribed to this newsletter for years. They offer caretaking positions all over the world.

  17. kathy says:

    i was just looking to see if anyone had a home ,that needed someone to live in and take care of, it`s me 38 , my husband also38 ,hanges drywall,we live in jamestown,tennessee , there`s just no work here! need help

  18. Leslie says:

    I am a single mom and college student and wish I had the opportunity to housesit years ago because I might hve finished my degree by now.

  19. Cody Lundgreen says:

    I am a Utah college student that’s looking to housesit for someone. I just returned back to school after serving a mission for my church and I’m looking to save money on housing.

  20. Nick says:

    I’ve spent a lot of money traveling and living in another city in a place like that is normally big bucks. So you get free rent and a super nice place? I’m game! Do you have any links? I mean it’s not like I can download a coupon and get the deal…

    Seems like you’d have to know someone or have some sort of agency to sign up with.

  21. George says:

    my wife and I are retired and are interested in this lifestyle. For 6 to 8 months a year. What is that possibility. We were going to join house sitters world to get started. Appreciate your opinion

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *