Sue and Roy Strangeway spent their working lives as funeral directors in Kent, but when they retired they moved back to their native East Midlands. Sue had read about Homesitters Ltd in a magazine and decided to apply, thinking it would allow them to explore and discover new places.

The couple bought a property in a retirement park with stunning grounds in a gated community where visitors are monitored, meaning their own home is safe while they're house sitting. They love their new home, but pets are not allowed.

Sue says: "Our favourite thing about home and pet sitting is the animals- we get all of the joy without any of the long-term responsibility.

"On a recent assignment we looked after 17 parrots and a dog! Most of the parrots were in aviaries but there was one in the house; he was beautiful, but every time we went into the room he'd bombard us with questions. 'Where are you going?' and 'What are you doing?'"

Sue adds "We like the fact we can choose which assignments to take and that we're fully insured. Should we have an accident or damage something, we know we are covered. Homesitters as a company are very flexible and have an emergency support line should we need it."

In the evenings Sue keeps busy with her hobby of bead-work while Roy takes his laptop so he can organise events for their local croquet club where he is secretary. The couple put their earnings from home and pet sitting towards holidays, although Sue says the homes they stay in are often so luxurious that if they were hotels the cost of a night's stay would be astronomical.

One property they recently stayed in had beautiful gardens where they were able to take the dogs for a walk every day. The grounds were so large, says Sue, that it took the gardener more than two days on a ride-on mower to cut the grass.

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