I saw a local sit yesterday in a very desirable location. In fact my husband and I were in this building when we were looking for a new home a couple of years ago. I wouldn’t dream of applying on the sit due to the clutter in the photos - I found it a real turn off. I see the listing only has 0-3 applicants so far and curious to know if the homeowners will find someone. As a sitter I would suggest to homeowners to tidy up before you take photos of your home. How do other sitters feel about this? Would you apply on a sit in a desirable location but the place looks a mess?
Generally I would not apply for these sits.
If for instance there is a kitchen picture with zero counter space or the living room is full of miscellaneous items, then I’m out.
I will add, I have seen sits with multiple applications that I myself wouldn’t have applied for.
If I see a lot of clutter, I won’t apply, even if the location is what I want. If someone is naturally a messy person, you’d think that they would at least clean up for the photos, but if they don’t, it probably means they won’t clean up for the sitter either. One time, I had someone invite me to a sit, and I looked at the listing and saw tons of clutter. I noticed it was the first time she had ever posted for a sitter. I asked her if she wanted some advice and she said yes, and I very nicely told her she had to clean up her clutter and include more pictures (pictures of where sitter would sleep, the bathroom, the kitchen, etc, which she did not even include). She only showed pictures of the cats lounging in and around the clutter! I never heard anything back from her, and saw later that she posted another sit with exactly the same pictures, so she didn’t take my advice. I also think she didn’t get any applicants. I wouldn’t apply for a sit where I wouldn’t feel comfortable; I always feel that the location I want will show up at another time, with better circumstances.
I don’t take sits where the photos show lots of clutter or not cleaned.
Personally, if I’m putting myself out there, I want to put my best foot forward and “sell” my home and pet as a desirable place to want to stay.
I don’t want to feel I have to clean or clear a space just to sit down.
But then, that’s me and I’m a tad ocd. Clutter doesn’t work for me.
I did a cluttered sit a few years ago. The photos didn’t tell the story, unfortunately and there were no reviews.
Fortunately it was good weather in a location with lots of things to do outside the house. The dog and I spent a lot of time at coffee shops and parks to avoid the clutter.
I nicely pointed out the clutter in my feedback
Depends on the amount of clutter. If the owner(s) just have a lot of stuff, but it seems like everything has its own place, I’m okay with it, but if it’s a lot of things all over the place, I’d instead pass.
I steer clear of clutter too, but I’m sure there are some sitters who are not bothered by it.
I say, show the home as it really is in the pictures. The right sitter will apply. Wouldn’t it be unfortunate to see a neat home in the pictures but find out differently when you get there?
I couldn’t agree with you more. I feel pictures should be just like reviews be honest, show me what the space will look like when I get there. As much as I LOVE a clean and organize house, I know depending on things, it’s not always like that. I understand things can happen, and they will. However I feel like it I posted a picture of myself in my early 20s, and not now(I’m sure some still look the same, I’ve put on quite the weight since my early 20s). I would be completely misleading the home owner. That is honestly how it is for me. If I see a clean house, that is what my expectations are. However if I see a little disorganized, my expectations wouldn’t be quite a high.
It seems bizarre to me when people post photos of rooms full of clutter, unmade beds, washing hanging around the place and certainly puts me off. Just like when you’re trying to sell a house you want to ‘sell’ a housesit to potential sitters. However, as has been discussed elsewhere on the forum, we all have different levels of cleanliness/tidiness, but these things don’t help the owners for sure!
Did you feel you had to do some decluttering at all? I may well have done but the owner might have been offended. I’m always suspicious when there are no pics inside the house and won’t apply
Totally agree with Smiley, I can’t believe some of the pictures people post with their unmade beds (sometimes hard to tell if someone is still under the big lump of bedding) clothes lying all over the floor, kitchen counters with so much clutter you can’t see the counter, dining tables with dirty dishes, those sits aren’t for me.
It is to me too. Some people it just doesn’t bother them to post pictures like that, or they go, It’s not THAT bad. I just avoid applying for those. However even reading some of the profiles I come across, I get the impression under requirements, that they are looking more for a Housekeeper/maid, or an employee over someone just sitting for the house. I understand there are things that need to be done, and maintained while there, however some expectations are WAY to high on what they expect people to do.
Fortunately those people are in the minority and I wouldn’t apply. My main purpose is to look after their animals and keep the house secure. Of course I’ll leave the home as clean as I find it, water plants etc but don’t expect to be doing chores that, as you say, a housekeeper would be paid to do
I’ve seen a few reviews where the homeowners have thanked the sitters for leaving the house cleaner than when they left it! I wonder if they may have that expectation of future sitters.
My aim would be to clean up after ourselves, and leave the house as tidy as I found it. As a family with a young child we are used to clutter so in a way it takes the pressure off if it is not pristine.
It’s a hard pass for me.
Me too. There is a sit listed now in a location that I want to visit, but every surface of the house is covered in stuff. Kitchen counters, desks, beds, etc. No wonder they have no applicants.
Yes, If i see jenga built up washing up sitting on the kitchen sink, it’s a definite NO from me. I have done house sits where I left the house cleaner than when I found it. I’d like to focus on the animal/s I have been assigned to focus on, not do a few hours of house cleaning like a maid.
How do you point out the clutter nicely?
I totally agree! Exactly what happened to us for the last sit we did. I saw, during our video call that it was messy. As some of their belongings were still in boxes I thought they probably just moved in but that the place would be clean at least. Not only it wasn’t the case, but the host didn’t make room for our personnal belongings neither in the rooms nor the fridge and kitchen. Anyway we’ve adapted and left their home super clean. As a result she didn’t even mention in her review (nor thanked me in person) for leaving the place super clean… Will be more careful next time.
For me it depends on what type of clutter. If it is piles of books against the wall, art or craft materials, pictures not hung, lots of kitchen implements or ingredients, musical instruments etc then that makes me think it’s going to be the home of interesting people and I will enjoy the ‘vibe’ of their home.
If the photos show unmade beds, washing hanging to dry, dirty dishes, etc it leads me to believe that the owners don’t have a clue about attracting people to their sit and that possibly the house may not be the cleanest.
However, like stereotyping, my assumptions may be incorrect. I tend to zoom in on the photos and look at things like the grouting between the tiles, skirting boards, the upholstery on the sofa, the mirrors etc to see if the place looks reasonably clean.
I can live with most things though, and I only need a tiny bit of space for myself and my few belongings. As long as I have one chair to sit in (and I have done a sit in a home that only had one chair) and enough clean crockery and cooking implements I’ll manage.
My biggest fear is fleas and the smell of animal urine and although we may assume this may be more likely in a messy looking cluttered home that is not necessarily the case. Thankfully I have survived so far without encountering either of these although I did have to sleep outside on the porch during one sit because of plug in air fresheners that, even when unplugged left a strong residual smell.
It’s like so many issues we discuss on here, we all have different needs and levels of tolerance. For me, when I look at extremely tidy, gleaming with cleanliness homes, with bare kitchen counters, not a book or personal item in sight I know I would find it difficult to spend time in such a barren, sterile, space.