Tuesday Tip Jar: Side Hustlin’ with Four-Legged Friends

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Welcome to another “Tuesday Tip Jar” where I will share awesome savings and financial tips as I find them. I might not have something for you every Tuesday, but when I do, you’ll find it here!

If you’ve got a financial tip you think others would benefit from, please send it to me via my contact page at the top of the blog!

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My wife and I absolutely love animals. Currently we own 1 Black Lab (Sylvester), 1 Chiweenie (Hoppa), 1 cat (Rico), 1 tortoise (Stormy), and 2 Hermit Crabs (Shelby and Bubba.) Previously we’ve owned lizards, snakes, bunnies, a pig, and many other dogs and cats. By the time I’m done writing this post we’ll probably have a guinea pig, because they are cheap and my daughter won’t shut up about getting one. I think we’ll also make the leap and get chickens next year. We’re all very excited.

Fun Fact: My 11 year-old son did *not* in fact name his pet tortoise after the pornstar/stripper/Trump buddy, Stormy Daniels, but thanks for asking! (I get asked a lot.)

As my wife and I looked for awesome side hustles to bring in some extra scratch, one of the options mentioned to me was Rover.com. Rover is a site that allows two things:

  1. It allows others to watch your pets for you.
  2. It allows you to become a pet sitter for others!

Their plan is relatively straightforward. My wife (who will be primarily responsible for the animals while I’m at work) filled out a simple questionnaire that asked things like if our yard was fenced, what dogs and cats we have, and what size of dogs we’d like to take care of. It took about 15 minutes to answer fully, and after adding a few pictures of her, our pets, and our home, we were off and running!

(You can sign up for sitting cats as well, which we did.)

The site allows you to offer the following services:

Boarding – Animals stay overnight at your house. This would be if you are leaving out of tonight on vacation or similar excursion and need someone to watch your pets while you are gone.
House Sitting – The pets stay at their own home, and you go and stay with them overnight(s).
Drop-In Visits – The pets stay in their own home, and you drop in on them for visits, with the number of visits per day set by you and the owner.
Day Care – The pets come to your house, but don’t stay overnight. The owner drops them off in the morning, and picks them up at night.
Dog Walking – You go to the pets home and take them for a walk around the neighborhood while the owners are away.

Rover’s structure is pretty straightforward. For the standard signup, they take 20% of whatever you make by booking through them. They also offer a “Pro” option that is 5% more, but comes with professional pictures, improved search rankings, etc.

While we initially signed up for the standard, we have since switch to Pro just to see if we feel it’s worth the additional five percent.

What you offer as a fee to potential clients is totally up to you. In my area the pet boarding (which seems to be the primary service folks come looking for) averages around $30-$35 per night, but I’ve seen as high as $80. In case you might be wondering, the owner (not the sitter) is in charge of providing the food.

My wife has been on the site for a week and already has her first booking, and this was before we decided to try the Pro version. We’ve got 2 little pooches coming to stay with us for 3 days starting today, and our kids are already buzzing at the thought of new visitors in the house.

Rover’s site and app are very easy to use and allow for solid communication before you take any job. If there are things that are important to you, such as making sure the pets are house-trained, you can get all of that information up front.

You’re not going to get rich using Rover, but if you love animals like we do, the potential is there to bring in a few extra bucks a month while at the same time getting to meet some awesome new four-legged friends.

Check it out for yourself at Rover.com, and if you decide to sign up, give me a shout first. I think my wife has some kind of referral code that gets her a commission of some kind.

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Have you tried Rover? What did you think? I’d also love to hear about similar side hustles that you’ve tried and love. Anything helps! Let me know in the comments below.

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