How to Write the Perfect Ad to Find a Quiet, Creative, Like-Minded, Groovy, Nice Housemate or Caregiver

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Artwork: Robin Mead

If you are homebound, the people in your house are very important. Those are the only people you see! If you are looking for your dream housemate or perfect caregiver, here’s some ideas to get you started:

WRITING YOUR AD HEADING

The headline is the most important part. If your headline is boring, no one will read your ad.

If you are a Spoonie, you may need a quiet, low-key, understanding household. We have found that if you write the word “quiet” right in the title of the ad in big letters, some people will read the ad based just on seeing this word. Those are your people!! Sample headlines:

  • “Quiet Household. Introverts Welcome”
  • “Quiet, Friendly House. People with Disabilities Welcome”
  • “Eco-Friendly, Nontoxic, Quiet Household seeks Kindhearted Housemates”
  • “Seeking Introverted, Quiet, Compassionate Caretaker”
  • “Quiet, Thoughtful Writer Seeks Eco-Friendly Home”

On the other hand, some people just write:

  • “Room for rent in three-bedroom house”
  • “Disability Home Aide Wanted”

Judge for yourself. Which would you be more likely to click on?

WRITING YOUR AD DESCRIPTION

When writing an ad, it’s a good idea to focus on what you want. Describe all the great and positive things about you or your home, and all the wonderful qualities you are seeking in a housemate or caregiver. See below of this page for some samples.

THINGS TO AVOID

A lot of people want to include all their deal-breakers, so that they can screen out bad people. Unfortunately, that’s not what happens. If you write an ad that is daunting and negative and demanding, you are going to screen out all the good people!

Write about the positives. If you find a nice, compassionate, and communicative person,  you can go over your needs and work out agreements when you meet.

Here’s the kind of ads that will not attract a lot of wonderful, kind-hearted, generous, stable, trustworthy people:

  • “Don’t apply if you are not this-thing, this-thing, and this-thing”
  • “You must be willing to do things this-way, this-way and this-way”
  • “No drama, no messiness, no laziness, no crooks, no frauds, no pets, no noise, no scented products, no chemicals, no students, no slackers, no this, no that, no other thing”

or

  • “I’m in this terrible situation right now. Why don’t you write to me so you can get involved in my problems.”

When you are done with your ad, go through and cross out every sentence that is negative. Now you are done with your ad.

DIVERSITY & TOLERANCE

If you would like a diverse, tolerant household, we have found that if you write “LGBT queer friendly” at the top of the page, that will usually cause a lot of people to self-select out. That is less work for you having to screen people!

Other phrases like “diverse races, nationalities and cultural backgrounds welcome” or “social justice activists” or “people with disabilities” may also change who will respond to an ad.

SAMPLE CAREGIVER AD #1

SEEKING KINDHEARTED GENTLE CAREGIVER

Caregiver for woman with disabilities. Personal care, cooking, light cleaning, errands, phone calls, driving. accompanying to doctors appointments. 20 hours per week. Schedule is flexible/negotiable.

Seeking a compassionate and understanding person. Caregiving experience not required, but must have good references that show trustworthiness. Seeking a person who is:

  • Quiet, introverted, gentle, calm
  • Kind and compassionate
  • Has car and able to drive
  • Able to lift things
  • Likes cats
  • Local to ____ neighborhood

Household is LGBT friendly. Artists, writers, activists, healers, diverse backgrounds welcome

SAMPLE CAREGIVER AD #2

Calm, Gentle, Peaceful Caregiver Needed for Artist

We are seeking a patient, kind, and compassionate caregiver who would enjoy working in a quiet, peaceful environment. We are seeking a caretaker for a wonderful woman who is a loving and creative artist. We hope to find a caretaker for some day shifts, but mostly night shifts. We are looking for someone who: Has 3 references. Please have reliable transportation. Please have a cell phone. Please be a non smoker. You will need to be able to see and work in dim lighting

SAMPLE HOUSEMATE AD

Quiet, Calm, Eco-Friendly Household

We are seeking a housemate for our beautiful, quiet, calm house. The house is charming and spacious, set back from the road, and surrounded by flowering trees.

We are seeking a quiet housemate. Writers, scholars, healers, activists, and vegetarians especially welcome.

Household includes people with disabilities and welcomes people with disabilities and chronic illnesses. People from all spiritual paths, religious backgrounds, sexual orientations, cultures and races are welcome.

We are LGBT friendly, and we support immigrants rights, animal rights, disability rights, and social justice causes.

We are a scent-free and environmentally-friendly household and use non-toxic cleaning products and no personal scented products. Please respond by writing and telling us a little about yourself and how you might be a good match for our household.

LILAC’S SPECIAL SCREENING METHOD

Lilac shared her story of how she screened to find good people:

“I’ve had a lot of success screening people on Facebook. When someone responds to my ad, if they sound promising to me, I will write back and send a link to my Facebook page or ask for their Facebook ID and then send them a friend request. Then I click on their profile picture and scroll through all the profile pics they have ever posted.

“What I want to see: Lots of loving, supportive comments from friends and family over several years. Comments and tagged photos from people that appear to know this person in real life. Comments by real people who also appear to have real Facebook profiles.

“What I don’t want to see: Racism, intolerance, mocking people, frat parties, little or no comments, new accounts, profiles that look fake, generic comments from strangers.

“Facebook also shows if we have any friends in common, so I can write to those friends and ask for the inside scoop. If you live in a smallish area, anyone like-minded may have a few friends in common.

“I also scroll down their newsfeed to see what kind of things they post. I really did not realize the world was such a racist place until I started scrolling way down in people’s newsfeeds. People sound so nice and normal when they contact you!

“If someone doesn’t have a Facebook account, or the account is new and I don’t know anyone in common with this person, it may be safer not to consider that person.”

WHERE TO FIND AIDES & HOUSEMATES

The easiest and best way is to ask someone you know already know and like and trust: How To Ask A Friend To Be Your Home Aide (So they actually say yes!)

If that doesn’t work, time to start looking out in the wider world: Where to Find Home Aides

If you are interested in communes, eco-villages, co-housing, cooperatives and other types of alternative living, you may be able to find a whole bunch of fabulous housemates all at once: Cooperative Living on a Disability Income

APPLYING FOR HOME AIDES

If you are unable to care for yourself and need assistance, there may be a program in your area that can help you. Some programs will let you select your own aides. Learn more: How To Get a Caregiver

LEARN MORE

How to Have a Live-In Aide in Affordable Housing

How to Decide: Agency Care or Self-Directed Care

Do You Hire Your Own Home Aides? Or Use an Agency?

How to Get Extra Help if You Have a Live-In Caregiver

How to Get Extra Help if You Are in a Medicaid Waiver Program

Updated January 2018. Please comment below with your questions, stories, input and ideas. Also: kindly let us know if any links on this page stop working. If you liked this page, please share with others by pressing one of these magic buttons: 

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