Curious why only sitters are background check?

Hi systaran, same, we’ve had almost all positive experiences too: only one sit where I felt uncomfortable safety-wise in three years of non-stop sitting. And that was just a one-nighter!

But there have definitely been sits I wouldn’t have applied for if the listing had been up-front about aspects of the sit, rather than saying ‘Oh by the way’ when we arrive. I do feel an ‘accuracy of listing’ rating facility would make this a far rarer occurrence. Having suggested it several times, I await a reason from TH as to why sitters can’t rate criteria as home owners do. Even if we gave straight 5s most of the time (as I’m sure we would!) it would help keep home owners accountable in the same way that ratings encourage accountability from sitters.


It would be nice if we could rate certain criteria the way the HOs rate us on different aspects of the sit. That’s just another area where THS really favors the HOs and strays from the mutual exchange aspect of sits.


@systaran and @Sunshine_G: I agree! Once again, I really like the Airbnb model. And obviously TH knows about Airbnb, and they know some of us would prefer that.

So, I just try to make the best with what we’ve got. In my PP feedback, I include in the text a subscore for my desired fields, including communication, cleanliness, location accuracy.

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Count me as one who wonder and would really like this to be a mutual thing.

Sure, we are staying in their home and looking after their pets. It makes absolute sense for us to have a check done on us.

But that doesn’t rule out that there can be unsafe/difficult/poor-judgement/dishonest about details hosts where a sitter can show up and find out they or the home isn’t what it was made out to be… or find out during the sit…

While a background check on either a sitter or host won’t pick up all the sorts of things they both wish it could, it can be beneficial for both.

Sitters take a risk, too, in traveling to a strangers home and staying there, usually alone. It’s not a one-way risk situation.


My family asked if the Owner was verifed as well… and I assured them they are… only to find they are not. They are concerned for my safety. I’m not only curious… I would like a response from THS as to why this is not the case. Thank you.


Hello @whyvon welcome to our community forum, thank you for contributing to the conversation, in response to another member asking your question the following was posted by one of the team …

Thank you

Im in support of Home owners also having to get background checks.
For lots of reasons.


The link does not explain why it’s not required for HOs.

From the linked resource:

Why is it mandatory for sitters but not for owners?

We are committed to making the platform as safe as possible for everyone. We have made this mandatory for sitters because owners are opening up their homes and entrusting sitters with their beloved pets.

This does not answer the question of why is it mandatory for sitters but not owners. It implies the risk is one sided, not mutual.


Hi @systaran (and @whyvon and @Collie1313). I agree; it doesn’t really say why, does it?

From a business model, maybe it’s harder to attract/keep PPs (pet parents)? It reminds me of other sites and how users may feel there’s a lean by the company one way or the other: Airbnb hosts vs guests, or eBay sellers vs buyers. Each side probably wishes things were a little different.

These forums are mostly sitters, so we mostly hear just the sitter side.

What I wish is that PPs at least had the option of a free background check like sitters. Similarly, I wish PPs could get external references to start out.

I think it would actually help the PPs. It’s hard to start out as a PP, especially if you’re not in a popular area. As a sitter, I may think, “Do I really want to be the one to test the waters? What if they ask me to build a doghouse?” That was based on an anecdote from elsewhere. :sweat_smile: Anyway, I don’t care if your references are your friends/family. At least you’ve got friends and family who will vouch for you in writing.


yeah, the more I think about it. the more ick-y it feels to have to be scrutinized while home owners are not.
Almost feels like the sitters have a stigma & need to prove we are trust worthy while home owners, don’t need scrutiny due to reasons that can be perceived as classist.


Thanks Geoff… would you be so kind as to pass this on to your Product Team?

All the best,

I had this exact same question. What if a scammer posted a housesit? What if someone with bad intentions post a sit. I think they should get background checked too


@Angela-HeadOfCommunity I had no idea that HO/PP do not face the same verification as we sitters do. Fortunately I have encountered nothing but lovely people so far, however, now that this discrepancy has been brought to light I need to reconsider the whole setup of THS & sitting again.

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Hi @ELNF thank you … we understand and have passed your comment to the team who do monitor forum conversations for member’s views which provide invaluable feedback.

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Hi @whyvon,

Sorry, just saw this. I assume you were replying to me? However, I don’t work for TH. But I guess you could say I’m a motivated volunteer.

I don’t know who’s on the Product Team besides @Ben-ProductManager, so I’d tag him, a mod, or really just contact Membership Services.

Anyone at TH, please see my above post (Curious why only sitters are background check? - #34 by geoff.hom).


Hi @whyvon… we have passed on your feedback. Thanks @geoff.hom for once again helping another member of our community.


Thanks Angela!
I’m also tagging @Ben-ProductManager
Seems this is an important issue for all of us.
@geoff-hom had the best idea…
At least make it optional for Home Owners to do so.
Thank you!

Yes, please.