House, pet or baby sitting services
Under the Australian Consumer Law, a business that provides a house sitting, pet sitting, baby sitting or cleaning service must meet service guarantees.
How to protect yourself
To reduce the chance of problems, consider doing the following:
- Contact several agencies before making a decision to get an idea of how services differ.
- Get a preliminary indication of previous customer satisfaction by reading independent consumer reviews. Although businesses cannot falsify customer testimonials by law, seek references of the service you can contact directly for an opinion.
- Check the business is registered with ASIC by doing a business name search.
- Check the business is the holder of an Employment Agent licence by doing a licence and registration search.
- Verify the business has obtained a National Police Certificate for the employees who will work in your home.
- Clarify what the business’ insurance will cover if something goes wrong while their employees are in your home.
- Be aware that while your own insurance might cover accidental loss and damage, many policies have exclusions for deliberate damage and theft caused by people lawfully invited onto your property, such as cleaners, sitters and their guests. Contact your insurer to discuss whether your insurance cover can be modified to accommodate someone else living or working in your home.
If problems occur
We provide a free telephone advisory service to consumers and business people on their rights and obligations under the Australian Consumer Law. You can call our contact centre on 1300 304 054 or send us an email.
If you have suffered a ‘consequential loss’ from the services, you may be eligible for compensation.
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