Our fairly low maintenance, 1 level, 2 bed, 2 bath home with small courtyard & big roof terrace needs a sitter mid-January to mid-April to be occupied/secure and aired. We've no pets. The house is on the edge of a town with the main street (paseo) with shops, restaurants, bars etc 20 minutes walk & a few even closer. The town has many supermarkets, an indoor central market & a weekly market on Fridays.
The nearest city is Gandia is a 20-minute drive/taxi away. There are buses that run there, but they are infrequent - public transport isn't great in our area, unfortunately. A vehicle is a bonus. You can get really cheap rental cars from Valencia airport at this time of year. Gandia has a train station which takes you to Valencia city in about 45 minutes. The airport can then be reached by metro in minutes. There is a bus direct from Oliva to Valencia bus station. We go to Valencia city a lot - it's beautiful. We can provide train & bus schedules & apps etc.
The beach is 15 minutes drive/45-minute walk. It’s quiet out of season & is a nice walk. There's a theatre showing movies in English every Thursday. It’s a popular destination for cyclists & kitesurfing.
The local language is Valencian, though almost everyone speaks Spanish. English is not widely spoken but it’s friendly & easy to get by with a few words. Not for those looking for a super foreign tourist-friendly destination. There’s a small expat community - mostly British & Scandinavian - with a few bars where you can always find help & advice.
Although there are a lot of facilities, the town is quiet in winter, apart from during festivals. There are a few festivals going on during this time period.
Jan & Feb are the mildest months, but there's often sunny days, though sometimes heavy rain & storms hit too. Last year Jan and Feb were really warm and mild. The house is designed to stay cool in summer, so can get chilly. We have a portable gas heater & various electric heaters. The house is not for those who are expecting cranked-up centrally heated homes or are sensitive to the occasional chill - fine if you know that occasionally you might need to throw on a sweater.
Our house is close to town but on the edge of the countryside with lovely views from the terrace of the mountains. We have a driveway. A quiet neighbourhood - you’ll mostly hear the local dogs/cockerels & there’s even a couple of peacocks wandering the neighbourhood.
The courtyard is walled & private. There’s a small conservatory off the courtyard. The house is decorated with quite a few bits of mid-century modern furniture & vintage bits.
We have wifi/good fibre. No local TV - all watched through Netflix/Amazon Prime.
The main responsibilities we’d ask is to keep the house aired (like many Spanish houses, it can get a bit musty /damp in winter). Then running & emptying the de-humidifiers is key & keeping it clean, looking after the plants & replacing any gas bottles that run out. This would require a taxi trip if you have no car, as the bottles are really heavy. But they last so long, it may not be needed at all.
Non-smokers only, please. Families are welcome, though it’s not suitable for pre-school kids. The living room, with the tv, is long & narrow so we don’t have a sofa, but 2 armchairs.
To walk back from town, it’s uphill, sometimes on thin, cobbled pavements, so probably not suitable for someone with mobility issues. We have a security system with cameras so we would arrange for you to have a login to control.
Having had our first house-sitters last year we learnt a couple of lessons. Getting the house super-cleaned ready for house-sitters whilst preparing for travel was an awkward & stressful juggle, as is having the house-sitters stay the night just before we leave. So, ideally, we'd like is the house-sitters to stay locally for a couple of nights so we can meet/handover, but are not under each other's feet. We would also then arrange for a cleaner to come in when we leave, just before you move in. Accommodation locally is pretty cheap, especially at that time of year & we could help/suggest somewhere - unlikely to be any more than €100 for 2 nights.
Those with references will be preferred ideally.
Hopefully, this doesn't sound too negative, but just wanted to be upfront as some may have an unrealistic idea about temperatures & transport ;)