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Caretaking Is a Win-Win Situation


Many individuals are making a radical change in their lives and becoming full time caretakers of property, estates, farms, ranches, or even nature preserves. Caretaking has been around for thousands of years, and is not an unknown profession. However, the modern age has brought us the option of quick travel through air transportation, and the ability of communication via the Internet and newspapers. These two outlets have brought caretaking to the foreground as an opportunity for anyone.


There are many reasons why the services of a caretaker are needed, the first being for individuals who purchase a second home, or even a third, due to their employment. Parents are bringing their children with them when they travel, and are no longer leaving them behind with a nanny, or relative. This has prompted many to purchase a second residence. These individuals are not interested in renting out their second home. They want the freedom to return at any moment.


Other individuals are purchasing a second home in a favorite vacation spot. These people are not interested in simply investing in real estate. This vacation home is purchased as a way to open the door up to their own family and friends who may want to drop in at any given time.


It is a known fact that people are living longer than ever before. The individual that may own a working farm, ranch, or an inn may decide it is time to bring in someone younger to help them manage their property. Their grown children may have their own careers, or they may not want to play such a hands on role in the operation of the family business.


All of these groups are finding that employing a caretaker comes to the rescue of their diverse needs. It is a known fact that insurance on second homes is higher than the premiums on a first. This rise in cost is due to the fact that insurance companies know that second residences are vacant most of the time. The chances of a burglary, flood or fire are greater in these homes. Depending on insurance carriers, employing a caretaker can lower insurance costs slightly.


Those that employ caretakers are also finding that it saves them money in the long run. Having someone on hand to keep up with routine maintenance, spot potential problems and to perform any needed repairs as they arise, is much cheaper than contracting outside labor to perform a major job. Their homes and property are also protected against potential burglaries, vagrants, or board youths who may want to loiter. Caretakers can be hired short term, or long term.


Individuals or families who offer up their services as caretakers are looking for a change of pace. They are usually city dwellers who are desiring a change of atmosphere and lifestyle for themselves, and their family. Some may not have the opportunity on their own to relocate to a remote or rural area. Some would never have the chance to work with animals, or on a nature preserve. The caretaking profession opens the door for them.


Caretakers tend to be retirees. Retirees gravitate toward caretaking out of a need to feel useful, a desire for a second career, and an opportunity to get lost in a different environment. Their past life experiences can benefit them greatly when entering into the caretaking industry. Anyone that is proficient in working the land, gardening, grounds keeping, maintenance and animal care can almost be guaranteed a position of caretaker. Anyone that has experience in delegation, management, and customer service may find that caretaking at a hostel or inn is an option for them, as well.


Retirees are finding they are at a prime time in their lives to follow their dreams and move to a location that would be considered an impossibility in years past. For those who always dreamed of working their own land, working with animals, or living at an exotic beach spot, this life style change is available to them through caretaking.


Young families are also finding the door open to them as caretakers, as well. Many large property owners, ranch and nature reserves are employing parents of young children to help maintain their site. Dads and Moms choose to make this move in an attempt to show their children different parts of the world, different life styles, or to get them out of the city and close to nature.


The most important thing to understand about caretaking is that it is considered a leisure job. It is not like the hustle and bustle of the business world, and you do not have to fear living under the scrutiny of a domineering boss. Most owners are not even on site, while those that are know the importance of privacy, and a relaxed calm atmosphere. Caretakers can move at their own pace, and enjoy all the benefits of their location. With this relaxed atmosphere, it is important that caretakers are very self-reliant, self starters and have an ability to work independently.


The main benefit provided to caretakers is free rent. This will give the retirees a chance to save their money, or spend it on their children's tuition, or family expenses. Free rent also benefits the young family who is saving for a place of their own. Depending on the job, sometimes a small stipend or salary is offered, as well as insurance. Moving expenses are usually paid by the caretaker, however moving expenses may occasionally be provided by the owner.


The duties of a caretaker will be as diverse as their location. However, the number one priority of all caretakers is honesty and a love for their environment. For those working on a horse farm, working ranch or nature reserve, a love of animals is a requirement. Caretakers working at a hostel or inn must have a love for people and customer service. Depending on the caretakers desires and areas of expertise, an owner can usually be found to match like a hand in a glove.


It is important to also remember that those who may not consider themselves experienced in certain areas can still obtain the position of a caretaker. Most property owners are willing to train someone they have a connection with, who they feel is trustworthy, and who has potential. Owners would much rather hire someone they feel is honest, over someone who has a page of working references who they think may be a crook.


Becoming a caretaker is a wonderful way for retirees to spend their golden years. The leisurely, relaxed pace, natural landscape and free lodgings all work together to bring an experience to their lives unlike any other they have experienced before. Caretaking also suits the individual who may be thinking of starting their own ranch, inn, or fishery. It gives them the opportunity to learn as they save their money. Families benefit from caretaking by the rural atmosphere and the ability to promote love of the land and animals to their children. The money that is saved on housing can go toward a future home of their own, or their children's education.


Caretaking is a win-win situation for both the owner and the caretaker. Reports show that there is an increased need for caretakers around the world. A connection can be made that is suitable for both the owner and the caretaker. Owners and caretakers can be found using the Internet and by searching newspapers.


Copyright © 2005, Ian White

Author Ian White is founder of provides a secure environment where property owners can quickly match, screen, and select caretakers; and caretakers can achieve their financial and lifestyle objectives.

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