Contacting owner in advance

Hello I am glad to report owners are contacting me in advance/without posting dates to sits.
I am glad to be considered outside of the normal application process.
My question is how do I do this with owners? I have not found clear answers here to this. In fact there is an unanswered question which I would like to have answered:"
another sitter wrote
"how do I just send a message but not apply when there’s a sit available? Owners state they live in x or y in Oz or NZ but I just want to ask the person for the specific area. This would help me as I may know the x or y & could plan for doing daily things.

Is this possible?"
Kindly answer this question… I have not seen an answer. Thanks very much

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I know what you’re asking and don’t believe it is possible. When I’ve wanted to ask a homeowner a question, I have to “apply” and then tell them that I’m not actually applying, just asking a question. Not ideal, in my opinion.

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Yes, I think that you are correct. You can only contact them directly if you have applied to them previously, if they have sent you a previous invite, or if they are members of this forum. Otherwise, you have to hit apply to make contact. That is likely annoying to them. I wish that there was a way to “opt in” to being contacted- by sitters and owners. I would also like to occasionally contact previous sitters if you can see that they have not left reviews for the homeowner.

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Other sitters have brought up an important issue relative to contacting a home owner: a specific location. The proximity to food stores is critical yet it is sometimes impossible to ascertain that the house is a very isolated area, without pubic transportation AND without Ubers or Lyfts… these drivers are self employed and cannot afford to go to isolated areas on their own dime. To make matters worse, the home owner often states “we are 10 minutes from x, y and z.” Is that driving time??? Usually but it should be stated in terms of walking. The site can require the home owner to list the distances in walking time

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Hello @Turtle
I think you are right : it is not possible to message a HO without applying.

Like you, I think it would be handy to have a “button” : « Ask a question before applying », or something similar…

Once we had to apply to be able to ask more questions about the sit and when we cancelled our “application” (because it was not a good fit for us), the OH said we make her loosing her time :flushed: !!!

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Actually it is possible to send a message without applying as I have done so many times.
you do have to click on “Apply for Sit” button but when you are directed to the next page, write your message without clicking (ticking) the box for any date available.
Once you hit send or submit message, you will be prompted with an alert that asks “are you sure you want to send message without applying for a sit?”
Just say yes and carry on.
@Therese-Moderator can confirm and/or provide other guidance.

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See this topic : contact without applying
The answer from @Katie-menbershipservice was : “Vanessa is correct, you can only message the owner if they have live dates, i.e actively looking for a sitter, or if you have been in contact with the owner previously.
It is likely this message is meant for when they do have live dates, that sitters can reach out to them and ask more questions about the sit.”
Maybe that has changed and now it is possible

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Ah yes, I see. Thank you @Flora

Thank you for this!!

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Update - I’ve just tested on both the app and the website and it isn’t possible to send a message without applying and selecting dates. If you un-tick the dates the option to send your message disappears. I suspect this is set to prevent owners from becoming inundated with requests or non-relevant messages. So the only way to get around this is to select the dates, send the message and then if you don’t wish to proceed based on the answer (or lack of answer), de-select the dates and withdraw your application.

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I just tried it with an active listing and could untick the date but not send the mssg. When I wrote a mssg it only prompts to confirm and send.
We need a volunteer HO willing to allow some test mssgs to see how it prompts and what we can do as work around.
I love challenges and trouble shooting for solutions.
I did notice there are some very nice prompts for creating nice intro mssgs.

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I saw that too… the messages… this is the latest version! We are seeing some nice improvements on the app :slight_smile:

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Hi @Vanessa-ForumCMgr I just tried contacting an owner with pre-application questions on the website but, unless I ticked the date box, it would not let me send the message and this is what I have found in the past. Fortunately most owners have not minded. I have either withdrawn my “application” or they have declined it if necessary.

Hi @temba I think this may have changed then… will check this with Therese tomorrow and get a definitive on the website and app current versions :slight_smile:

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I’ve never been able to send a message to a homeowner without ticking the date needed for the sit & in the end sending two messages. It must be annoying & I feel embarrassed/guilty bothering people.

I only use the website.

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@temba I’ve just tested again and the option to send does disappear now if you don’t have the dates in place… I’m questioning myself now about how I managed to do this in the past but more importantly it isn’t possible now. I’ve updated my post above so as not to confuse :slight_smile:

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Oh I didn’t realise that. Thanks for the info!

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Good to know thank you !
EDIT : I’ve just read that was not possible anymore ! Sad !

@Françoise-et-Youn it can still be done on computer such as laptop, (have not tried on Ipad) but not on mobile app. At least not at this moment.

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Thank you @Amparo : I was confused…

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