References are a definite advantage and for new house sitters a character references from people of standing in the community that have known you for a reasonable amount of time are acceptable. Have you rented or are you renting a property and can you get a reference from the owner? Have you looked after a friends property or pets at any time? They could give you a reference. You could get a reference from your boss at work. If you play sport or belong to a sporting team your coach might be able to help. If you attend a church the principle there may provide a reference.
Naturally the best reference is a recommendation from someone you have house sat for. It can be written, or if the referrer agrees, can be permission for the enquirer to contact the referrer for a verbal recommendation. If the home owner from your last position was happy with your performance they would be happy to give a written reference as well as a verbal one. You shouldn't be shy about asking - and you should get their permission before offering their contact details to others. Home owners will want to check references so including a contact phone number is important. We have found that most people who are willing to give a written reference don’t mind including their phone number.