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Platinum (36mths+)
House Sitting Preferences
  • 0 - 1 week, 1 - 2 weeks, 2 - 4 weeks, 1 - 2 months, 2 months +
  • Dog(s), Cat(s), Fish, Bird(s), Farm Animals, Horse(s)
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  • NSW: ALL   QLD: Brisbane, Central Coast, South Eastern   SA: ALL   VIC: Melbourne   WA: ALL  
  • NEXT 6 MONTHS    
  • 2024: 4Apr-19Apr | 29Apr-30Nov

House Whisperers

70, retired international high school teacher

67, photographer

My partner, Ellen, and I, Michael, have been together for over 25 years. We have an adult son, living in Perth. After renting the same house for 12 years in Suffolk Park, near Byron Bay, we put everything in storage and decided to travel around Australia house sitting when we can and camping when the dates do not overlap.
I am a retired international English/Spanish high school teacher who is working on becoming a full time novel writer and Ellen is a photographer. We are both Americans who have lived most of our lives overseas. Ellen is an Australian citizen and I am a permanent resident of Australia.

Presently we split our time between Australia and Indonesia where we have had a house on a remote island for over 23 years.
Living on such a remote island, which is still just beginning to get running water and electricity on even a part time basis, is the kind of challenge that we love. We have internet there and Skype from this year if you wish to contact us while we are there.

We are both extremely active. We both surf, swim, bike, dive and hike, especially overnight backpacking trips.

I have included two letters of reference under attachments from the house we rented in Suffolk Park for 12 years. Please feel free to contact them. We are also members of and here are a couple of references from the many which can be found on the website under our profile:

Cathi Zanevra,house owner/landlord, Suffolk Park, NSW
I can absolutely recommend Michael and Ellen for housesitting. I found them to be honest, quiet and reliable. They kept the place spotless and clean, we couldn't have asked for nicer people.

Diana Green, byron beach realty owner
I have know Michael Francis & Ellen Hess for 11 yrs. Both have been very excellent tenants very reliable honest and always paid rent in advance. They were too perfect of tenants, when the house sold new owners took over management. As they knew they were trouble free tenants.
I would highly recommend them as house sitters I know they will treat a house sit with respect and care.

Anushka- Muscat, Oman
13 Feb - 2 March 2018
There's this saying that ' dogs do know how to speak, but only to those who know how to listen', and it really is pretty incredible the level of listening, understanding, empathy, love and affection Michael & Ellen showered on our boy Boo, and girlie Ellie. The furry babes haven't stopped chatting about how much they miss them & their cuddles! Our first skype call with Michael & Ellen indicated what a warm, spirited & responsible couple they were & that vibe continued right through their time here in Muscat. We had the opportunity to go over all the routines as they arrived well ahead and by the time we set off on holiday we knew without a shadow of a doubt, that we had made the right choice in selecting them. At the time of confirming the sit we had only Boo, for it so happened that we rescued Ellie after the call ( we found her on the street), so we gave them the opportunity to reconsider coming to us, before they booked flights, but it didn't phase them the slightest, and they were ever more willing to take on the challenge of helping with training of our new family member! During their time here, they took great care of Boo & Ellie making sure to follow our guidelines, and updating us with detailed and daily stories about them along with great pictures, which showed the furry kids having the time of their lives, having fun & being loved! They leave as friends and we do hope our paths cross again.

Sue - London, Uk 3-12 August 2017

Michael and Ellen looked after Rocky and Riff Raff for a week in August. They did a fantastic job - the dogs have never looked so fit and content and I could see that Mike and Ellen both genuinely loved animals. Barely a doggy eyebrow was raised when I came home instead of the usual mad barking. Mike and Ellen kept in touch regularly while I was away with messages and pictures. The house was spotless on our return, too. I was sorry to see them go and would not hesitate to recommend them for house sitting.

An ideal house sit for us would include the care of animals of all kinds and/or a veggie/flower garden we could take care of. If you have any questions for us please contact us via email. Look forward to hearing from you.

House whisperers,
Michael and Ellen

Reviews (20)
No rating Thanks Michael and Ellen - you looked after the animals and the house fabulously. Really appreciated coming home to clean house and happy dogs/cats and fish.
SHARON (Currumbin Waters QLD, Dec 2017 - 3 weeks)
Michael & Ellen were great. House was cleaner when we got home than when we left. Our dog was super-spoilt & we were kept amused by updates on how she was running the household. Can definitely recommend them as housesitters.
SHAUNA (Lennox Head NSW, Mar 2024 - 2 weeks)
Michael and Ellen did a fantastic job of minding my home, and more importantly, my cat and 2 very energetic dogs. They walked (and ran, and swam) the dogs at least once a day. They kept me supplied with photos and dialogue almost daily, and the house was spotless on my return. I can't recommend them highly enough, and will def use them again if possible. :)
NICK (Tintenbar NSW, Feb 2024 - 2 weeks)
Very happy with my first experience with Aussie House Sitters. Michael and Ellen cared for our home and Jack Russell dog Annie very well. Pool was kept sparkling, gardens and home well maintained and our anxious dog was comforted and loved. They kept me informed with regular updates and I felt comfortable having them stay. I would highly recommend Michael and Ellen as respectful and dedicated house and pet sitters. I really appreciated having them in our home.
SUE (Suffolk Park NSW, Dec 2023 - 1 month 1 week)
I fear that my review of Michael and Ellen just won’t do them justice. They are house / dog sitting pros and I wouldn’t hesitate for a second to use them in the future and highly recommend to anyone else looking for someone to care for your home and pets. Our 2 dachshunds were in doggy heaven, having every need accommodated. House was clean and tidy on our return (possibly cleaner then we left it) and communication was on point. I could go on but I’ll leave it at that. Beautiful, salt of the ... MORE
LORRAINE (Banora Point NSW, Dec 2023 - 1 week)
Michael and Ellen ! 🤩 Wow what can I say ? They both were extraordinary. They look after our house our garden and especially our precious furry babies with great love and respect. I felt so at ease with these two interesting and happy people full of life and worldly experiences. I can totally and definitely recommend them.
PRESIA (Crescent Head NSW, Dec 2023 - 1 week)
Michael and Ellen were fantastic. Easy communication and fantastic care of Juno. Sent us regular pictures with her. Was only a short stay, but would gladly have them back again!
JACK (Buderim QLD, Jan 2023 - 3 days)
No rating Mike and Ellen looked after my beautiful Franco so well he didn't really want me to come home. The house, the garden and my babies (Franco - Persian Cat and Sanjeev - Fish) were very happy and well cared for. Would recommend them to everyone.
CHRISTENE (Pottsville NSW, Feb 2020 - 1 week 2 days)
No rating Michael and Ellen were awesome Bobby our very demanding Siamese cat had them eating out of his paw in no time. The house was so tidy and clean when we got back from holiday. If you would like to contact us please feel free to email Emma at .
EMMA (Coolum QLD, Jan 2020 - 2 weeks 1 day)
Michael and Ellen were fabulous house and pet sitters. Great communication and emails with photos of the dogs regularly. They left the house and garden ( and pool) in great shape and the dogs obviously adored them. I would highly recommend them.
PATRICIA (Buderim QLD, Dec 2019 - 4 weeks)
Thank you Michael and Ellen for a wonderful house sit ,happy pets and tons of photos and communication during our holiday ,highly recommend these lovely people for your house sit they were perfect !!!!
LINDA (Broken Head NSW, Mar 2019 - 1 week 6 days)
I cannot thank Ellen and Michael enough for the wonderful care they took of our three beautiful girls. When I first spoke with Michael I felt he and Ellen were what I was looking for. When I met them I knew they were the ones I wanted. I was able to go away and have a wonderful holiday knowing our two dogs and our elderly cat were well cared for. When we arrived home I could tell the girls had a great time while we were away. Plus our home was spotless on our return. While away Ellen and ... MORE
CATHERINE (Avalon Beach NSW, Feb 2019 - 2 weeks 3 days)
No rating Michael and Ellen treated our fur babies like royalty, we came home to an incredibly happy dog and cat. Lovely people and great communication. We can't thank them enough!
SAM AND PRUE (Mudgeeraba QLD, Feb 2017 - 1 week)
No rating We were lucky enough to have Michael & Ellen sit for us for a week and look after our house, 2 dogs, and 4 chickens. We received hilarious emails updating us of the animals antics, along with accompanying photos. Our 2 furry babies went on so many adventures that I think they were sad that Michael & Ellen had to leave when we returned! The house was spotless upon our return - in fact my oven was cleaner than I had left it! We would very happily have Michael and Ellen come and stay anytime ... MORE
NICKI (Beerburrum QLD, Jan 2017 - 4 weeks)
No rating We were very happy with the way Michael and Ellen looked after our pets and house. They are friendly, professional and have a lot of experience with different animals and houses. Our pets loved them and we had a worry free holiday. It was all good. I highly recommend them.
BETTY (Lake Macdonald QLD, Jan 2017 - 5 days)
No rating Michael and Ellen were fantastic house sitters, taking great care of the pets, garden, pool and house! They kept me in touch with how the pets were going, and left the house spick and span. Would definitely recommend them as a caring and responsible couple!
LINDA (Cobbitty NSW, Dec 2016)
No rating On a score of 1 - 10, Michael would score an 11 in our books. We met before going away so that Michael could familiarise himself with our house but most importantly , our dog. A great guy who made us feel very happy and relaxed that both would be taken care of whilst we were away. During our holiday, we received several epistles of how the stay was going, often hilarious, which convinced us that our pooch was in very good hands!! Just the one problem though, our dog has very high expectations ... MORE
RUTH (Margaret River WA, Aug 2016 - 4 weeks)
No rating I would recommend Michael as a sitter anytime - my dog quickly bonded with him and he exercised her twice a day and she adored him. Ellen came shortly before he left and she also was a friend to Polly. The house was very well cared for - - give them a go - wish they lived nearer so I could use them again.
DOROTHY (Dunsborough W A 6281 WA, Aug 2016 - 4 weeks)
No rating My partner, Ian, and I were very impressed with the love and care Michael displayed to our two dogs, Floyd and Jagger. He frequently kept us informed about their adventures together and photos to match.. both dogs felt comfortable with him and reciprocated their affection.. It is great to know that while on holidays there was someone reliable, friendly that loved our pets as much as we do.. our house was well looked after .. we can't thank Michael enough for what he did.. We happily recommend ... MORE
MARISA (Currumbin QLD, Jul 2016 - 2 weeks 1 day)
No rating We can't thank Michael and Ellen enough for the wonderful care they took of our 3 dogs and cat while we were away recently. We felt so confident leaving our pets and house to them, Michael and Ellen are great communicators,warm, friendly and extremely trustworthy. They sent updates and photos regularly. Our pets adored them and were so content when we arrived home...and our house has never looked so good either!! I would highly recommend these great house sitters!!!
CHERYL (Mount Eliza VIC, Dec 2015)
Peace of Mind

Happy you!

With a house sitter looking after your pets, house and garden - you can really relax. Happy days.

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