Is A Live-In Gardening Job Right For You?


Published on October 28, 2020

Are you considering a live-in gardening job? It is important to find out what that actually means. So that you can really judge if a live-in gardening job is right for you. It might sound appealing to get accommodation with your job, but living in with your employers can come with some downsides too. It is simply not for everyone. So make sure you understand exactly what it means before you take that job offer!

What Does Live-In Actually Mean

Firstly when looking at if a live-in gardening job is right for you. Let’s have a look in understanding exactly what it means to be live-in as a gardener.

For a gardener or groundsman, is it quite normal to be offered a live-in role. This mostly counts for full-time jobs. If you are working a part-time or freelance role, chances are unlikely that this will be a live-in role. As you will probably work for other domestic households too. So then a live-in role does not really make sense.

However, a fulltime gardening role really lends itself for a live-in position. When a household needs a full-time gardener, chances are that there is a substantial garden, or grounds, to look after. What normally is the case is that there is a cottage or a self-contained studio on the grounds that could be yours.

Of course, every job is different and the package offered will be too. But there are certain things you should really expect from a live-in role.

Minimum Expectations

Firstly, when you have a live-in gardening role, you should really have a self-contained cottage or studio. For a gardener, it is not really suited to live in a room in the family home. It is not practical for your job and also not great setup privacy-wise.

So you should at least have your own private space, separate from the family or principals house on the grounds. You should have a living/sleeping space. Including a kitchenette with everything you need to live, and your own bathroom.

Depending on your role, some live-in gardening roles also come with the usage of a car if this is part of your job description. If you do not need a car at all for your work, then it’s unlikely this will be part of the package.

Privacy & Private Life

So is a live-in gardener role the right job for you? It might well be! It can be a great solution if you are not bound to an area, location or house at the moment. For example: if you are single, with no kids, and renting a flat. Then a live-in gardening role might be a perfect job you want to do for a couple of years.

Bringing a Partner

But perhaps you have a partner. Is the principal ok with you bringing your partner to live in the property with you? And even if they are ok with it, in how far is it realistic? Living in a very small cosy studio might seem romantic at first. But it can get too small very quickly too. Some principals would be open to considering partners, but it is quite rare. Make sure you check beforehand and be open and honest so that nobody will be disappointed.

Pets / Children

Something else that might not make for a great setup is having children or pets. Pets, arguably, are more likely to be accepted into a live-in gardener role than children. But you definitely cannot assume. Perhaps the household does not like pets. Or they have pets that really cannot be with other pets. If you have a dog, would you have to walk it during the day, and does that clash with your working hours? All things to consider.

Similarly with children – does that really fit into the working situation? Is the accommodation large enough? Will you be able to keep enough privacy from the family and the principals home?

Simply put, live-in roles are really most straight forward when it is just you. There are exceptions, absolutely, but they are rare. If you are really keen to find a live-in role with your partner. You might want to consider becoming a Domestic Couple. They are very popular when it comes to domestic staff! And if you are a gardener, and your partner a housekeeper, or nanny, for example. You might be able to have a very successful career as a domestic couple.

Work & Private Life

One more thing you need to think about when considering a live-in gardening job is your private life. You will be, after all, living on the grounds of your employer. What are the rules of that? Make sure you are very clear of all that before you accept the role.

Do you have your own private entrance, for example? Are you allowed to have visitors and people staying over? If none of these things is possible, then it can potentially be a dealbreaker for you. But it completely depends on your lifestyle outside of work. Do you like to socialise, host parties, have friends over? Then perhaps this is not the right set up for you. However, if you are happy with not having any of those things in your house, then it could work well. You will simply always have to be aware that you are living on your employer’s property. So even though you are not working all day every day. A certain level of good behaviour is expected.

How can Polo & Tweed Help?

So are you still keen on a live-in gardening job, is it right for you? Whether you want to find a live-in or live-out role, we can help.  Polo & Tweed have only the best part-time, full-time and freelance gardening and groundsmen roles, all over the world. And we can guide you through the whole process and advice on what the right job type would be for you too. Why not contact one of our recruitment consultants to find out more and let us help you find your next great gardening role.



  1. Gary Hudson says:

    Good day. I read with interest the article above and although I am not a qualified gardener I am more than familiar with the trade. My last position was yard manager at a small thoroughbred stud in hampshire.I would dearly love to find a similar position. I have extensive maintenance skills as well as paddock maintenance, d.i.y and new work.I worked two years on a stud farm in South Africa also. Unfortunately I don’t have a computer only a phone and tablet this makes uploading my CV a mission. Most vacancies are for couples so this excludes me every time.So if you could point me in the right direction I would be most grateful.

    • Aafke Meelen says:

      Dear Gary, it sounds like you have an impressive list of experience already! There are apps you can download on your tablet (and even your phone too) such as google docs, which will allow you to create a CV in word format – which is a handy way to get something started already. To stay up to date on suited gardener roles with Polo & Tweed, you can register on our website by filling in this form and popping your newly created CV on there too! Good luck 🙂

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