Hating the new ‘5 applications and freeze’ system?

@Cuttlefish I’m in your court so yes, I’m open to listening to other members positives also! There’s always two sides right?


@Expat6 yes not yet…. you replied 2 hours after my post. People will and do shout you down on this forum, it happened on the last thread too so most who like the rule don’t even bother to so people just delete their comments because the ppl against it are so aggressive.

@Cuttlefish There’s not much more to add to it?

  • I get more sits because I compete against 4 people rather than 40
  • the whole process moves a lot faster as homeowners tend to get back way faster than they used to
  • I apply straight away to sits I have already favourited as the pop up appears and I have saved searches.
  • Sometimes I miss a few but mainly I get the chance. It’s not the same people with tonnes of reviews always getting all the sits, I think it gives more people more of a chance which is a lot fairer.

Thanks for the added info @Ashleynov - appreciate the response :+1:t3:


So what THS are saying is homeowners are being denied the chance to get the best sitter because all that matters now is how fast/lucky you are in applying for the sit. Also I have spoken to several homeowners and they are unaware that they only get 5 applicants so they think only 5 have applied for their sit so they have to choose one of them even though they would prefer more applicants.

I find it unbelievable that the 5 App & pause is STILL not common knowledge! I keep hearing this that members on both sides STILL don’t know about it even though its being in place more than a year!!!
Why is THS not properly informing ALL members of such a significant change???!!!


THS is purposely hiding the information about the rule-of-five.

For example, the “Reviewing” status. Sitters might think that HO is reading applications but that label is just a lie, the HO did not start reviewing, it is the algorithm that blocks further applications.

Even HOs have wondered on this forum why their listing was being reviewed.

@Ashleynov Thank you for your perspective. THS should be listening to everyone’s opinion.

You are having better luck finding available sits than I am.

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You are correct about having time to complete your application by keeping the window open. But you have to be awake and online to see the listing before it closes. (And please save the bragging about your last sit in small town somewhere where you biked 10 miles for groceries.)


If only the app worked and I could get notices about favorited sits too. Until then I am at a doubly unfair advantage. Waste of time for me to click those little hearts.

On the bright side, I have pet centric badges!!!

What you are actually saying is that businesses “evolve” in ways that hurt or destroy their existing customer base because they just don’t care. Luckily I’ve found a robust Facebook pet/house sitting group so will probably not renew THS.

Businesses care to only a certain degree about any customers. And yes, they’re out to make (more) money. That’s the way of capitalism. I don’t think it’s unique to THS. It is what it is.

And yes, again, if we can find better alternatives as customers/users, it makes sense to use those instead.

Not renewing causes businesses concern if they can’t get enough new customers in place of the old ones. We’ll see how THS does with that — at least those of us who continue with membership will.

Judging from what they’ve explained, it was inevitable that some users would end up unhappy. Why I say that: They implemented changes to spread sits around. That by default meant that some folks would get less, so more folks could share the “best” sits.

They can keep tinkering with such, but if their goal is to grow membership by spreading the wealth, that means there’s zero chance they’ll revert to the old ways.

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I’m a neutral there are pros and cons. I’ll talk about the pros in this post.
It focuses the pet owners attention. They have to do something to get more applicants, either reject some or accept the best so far.
There is no waiting around for a decision. I am getting more and more yes please or no thank yous in the first 24 hours of applying which helps me move on.
It unclutters (is there such a word!) the listings and helps me focus on the ones which are definitely looking for someone. If the listing is paused for a number of days it proves to me that the host is not really bothered.
This is only my thoughts. I’ve deliberately been away from the forum for about a week because I couldn’t understand the anger when someone posts a reply or opinion that isn’t the same as other posters.
I really enjoy this forum and have learnt so much from it so I’m back for another try.


Thanks @ElsieDownie appreciate your input too and welcome back. Your voice is needed on here please :wink::raised_hands:t3:


Forgive me @ElsieDownie for adding enumeration to your post

I think it’s excellent that you have done some perspective thinking about “The 5”. Everything in life needs balanced assessment without hysteria. Having said that, there are 3 points in your consideration of the pros and yet I’m really not convinced that 2 of them are significant enough to hold up against the cons.

  1. Seems reasonable enough but I rather doubt that a large proportion of listings receive so many applications that this is an issue. For those that are, many either don’t know about the 5, or settle for getting 5, neither of which is a good thing.
  2. Is your personal experience, so I can’t challenge it. I can only say that I’m experiencing a very slight increase in HOs who are poor communicators now but that could be because of natural progresssion of my time on the site.
  3. I can’t understand your point. If the listing has been paused at 5 then it helps no-one to assess their position & the HO’s commitment. If I wasn’t quick enough on the draw & missed out on applying then the listing is dead in the water as far as I’m concerned, I don’t keep checking back on it. If I was one of the lucky 5, there’s nothing I can do if it stays as “reviewing” or declines other applicants and opens to more, it’s the same status quo as when I was one of 15 applicants.

Ultimately, when weighed on the scales of Maat, are your points weighty enough to counter the frustration of being excluded from applying to the best/or the opposite hemisphere sits because one wasn’t awake, or glued to every new listing, or the notification was 58 minutes too late?

That is a thing that I had not thought about, but I agree. It takes the listings with too many application off the maps and off the search results.

Changing the number from 5 to 10 could be the solution. Is their an explanation from THS as to the reasoning of 5?

I haven’t read 276 comments but know many sitters are unhappy with the freeze after 5 applications. For us it hasn’t affected us landing sits, though not exactly where we would have preferred. That is because we wanted Eastern European sits which are very few and far between, at least on THS. We joined in NZ a year ago, were accepted for a number of sits in Oz (only had time for one), and another 14 in Europe (4 of which we lined up from Australia). We’ve been petsitting at all times we’ve been available to do them, have had some really great sits, lovely animals + places + homeowners. Of course we haven’t been accepted for every sit we’ve applied for, but you can’t be in 2 places at once, and we’ve been happy with all experiences. And of course we’ve seen sits that we’d love to have applied for if not already reviewing applications. But I don’t feel we’ve been adversely affected by the freeze rule, only by the fact that sits hardly exist in more off-the-beaten-track places, and not for the dates we’ve wanted.

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Agree. At minimum 10. It’s all consuming to find a great pet to sit. It’s gone from ALL to NOTHING. It’s neither useful to HO to choose from limited pool nor for Sitters who haven’t much of a chance :cry:

“And of course we’ve seen sits that we’d love to have applied for if not already reviewing applications”
Then you are affected .
This is what I mean when I say I’ve been negatively affected.

That’s one of the reasons for the implementation. They need to push the ‘regular’ sitters to unpopular destinations so need to shut down their access to the popular ones and give the new sitters a chance and getting what they were promised - a sit in a tourist destination. The sitters with multiple glowing reviews will likely always get chosen if they manage to get an application in so they lock you out by turning it into a speed game to be in the first 5. They hide this limit from Owners (many still don’t know there is a limit or that they can reject people to get more).
I don’t see this changing as it is either accomplishing their goals or is the brainchild of someone at the top with an ego that won’t allow them to admit to being wrong.