I have been an owner with TH for over 5 years or so, over 30 sits, lots of very positive reviews. For my last sit dates though I have had three sitters interview, they seemed amazing, seemed very interested, and then two days later have an excuse to bail out. This has never happened before, a sit agreed on in an interview has always worked out. I am starting to wonder what is going on, is this just an odd cooincidence. Anybody else running into this?
@Sas since the introduction of the “five”, I seriously believe that sitters just don’t have the time to research and write a proper application when applying so as to get into that initial top five. Though you have interviewed them (save for a better word), they probably realised the dates weren’t quite right/transport wasn’t right/flights weren’t right/sit wasn’t right. Any number of possibilities. It takes time to research a sit and if they apply very quickly, they haven’t done that research.
I hope now that you have reopened your listing to attract a new five, if this has indeed been the case, that you have better luck
I agree 100% with Ziggy.
The 5-and-done system forces sitters to hit “Apply” and send a note as soon as they see something interesting.
Then - with time to review (as Ziggy says) the actual dates, the requirements more carefully, and (very important) the logistics of getting to & leaving a sit, applicants may realize it’s not a good fit.
In the last year that’s happened twice to us. Sits were great, locations excellent, but when it came time to figure out logistics…
We apologized and explained it just wasn’t realistic.
Happily for us, in both cases the homes were spacious, the HO understood the dilemma and offered a day of flexibility.
Arriving one day early (but after dinner to not encroach) made a huge diff to our ability to get to the sit in a reasonable way.
And in many situations it’s also good for the HO.
Having a sitter arrive a day early is better than being anxious on the day of departure.
Perhaps worth asking the potential sitter if the schedule is the problem (assuming you have the room & flexibility yourself)?
Did you chat to each one, accept them and they pulled out, or did you chat with all three, make a decision and then they pulled out? I only ask because many sitters apply for multiple sits, and so they may have made other plans in the time it took for you to get back.
Although, as you say in your message, they are agreeing to the sit in the chat, which might mean they are interested but still need to work out the details.
We unfortunately had to decline two great offers for sits recently due to transport considerations. As another poster mentioned, there’s no time to properly research the details before applying (and honestly, with the amount of radio silence we get for our applications, it’s a waste of time to do a lot of research beforehand), so once we’ve had a quick chat and established that both sides would like to go ahead, we can look at trains/flights/extra accommodation/etc. As full time sitters, we have a tight budget, so unfortunately a few days’ wait can take a flight price from affordable to prohibitive.
Sorry you’re experiencing this. Hope you find someone!
I understand that the five-applicant rule may mean that sitters need to apply before they’ve fully worked out the logistics…
… but why cant they do that in between applying/hearing back from the home-owner/setting up a video call?
I would say because half the time the information is not in the listing. The difference between a HO wanting you there in the morning or afternoon can make a huge difference to travel plans especially if you sit back to back. Also HOs will often add information in the call not in their listing like the pets sleep on the bed and that is a no go for some sitters. Not to mention the actual location of the sit which turns out to be a village outside say York but they list as York and the attraction of that sit may then be diminished. You can ask lots of questions in the lead up to the call but if you don’t know what you don’t know then sometimes that information can come from left field.
Sometimes we do, sometimes we want to wait because we have questions about the sit that we want to ask before confirming, sometimes the HOs dates are slightly different than advertised and it means flying on a more expensive day or filling a gap with paid accommodation or sometimes, a flight goes from £36 to £189 and you just can’t do it anymore.
We used to do more research beforehand, only to not get chosen or to find out they are chatting with lots of folks and so on and so forth. It’s annoying, but it’s one of the prices both sides “pay” instead of spending money on accommodation/petsitters/boarding/rent.
@Shannon You bring up so many great points that seem like an easy fix for THS to implement!
Please, please THS, it’s really not that difficult.
Can Owners check a box if the pets sleep on the bed?
Can Owners put the time of day Sitters need to arrive and depart in the listing?
Can THS provide better location of homes? You have the addresses. We would like to know!
This is a very important thread! The 5 application rule has had unforeseen consequences.
These changes would make it easier for applicants to vet Sits before applying. Then there would be fewer withdrawals after the video chat. Make the listings more clear!
Good point! Seconded! I get it. I really do. But the five appliction thing is as much of a pain for me as a HO as it is for you as a sitter. If I’m getting back to you two hours or a day latter, you’ve had plenty of time to read the application, get back to me with a specific question and/or withdraw your application because you saw something you didn’t like.