Homeowners last minute

Hi, fellow pet lovers! I have had a number of excellent sits in the past couple of years but wonder why so many homeowners make fairly last-minute plans for travel! I can see how a certain proportion would be spontaneous and free-spirited, but the high number of folks going away for a week or more needing house sitters is baffling and, honestly frustrating, for those of us who do need to plan ahead. I find very few sits that I’m able to line up months ahead — a necessity because of my pet sitting business and needing to line up my own pet care in my absence. I know some HOs probably hear about this site last-minute, but I also see a lot of seasoned THS HOs not planning farther ahead. I do see more foresight for holiday sits, but I’m usually looking for a cool getaway at least a couple of months in advance for my own planning. Not all of us are digital nomads; I can’t imagine trying to line up sits if you’re working a regular job and have to put in for time off! Thoughts from both sitters and homeowners?


I also find this a bit baffling, but I think I will use it next spring during a tour in England. The concentration of HOs is so high there that I won’t need to be planning ahead for a string of short sits in different towns and villages.

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From what many sitters have said on the forum, they are booked up to a year in advance or more, which means there are lots of HOs posting sits pretty far in advance. So planning for the longer term definitely seems possible. I look at listings pretty frequently and it seems a good number post listings at least a month out or more.

Though of course, if someone is limited in the locations they can visit, length of time they can sit or when they can sit, because of work commitments, kids in school, etc…, then options will be more limited compared to people who are more flexible with locations, time frames, etc…as they will have many more listings from which to choose. The more criteria a sitter has, the fewer sits there will be that fit the bill.

My husband and I are full time sitters and vary in how far we plan ahead…it really depends on a number of factors from how far ahead we are already booked to whether we want to be in a certain area at a certain time.

We often book sits that are at least a month or two away, sometimes more. There are times when we don’t book something until a few weeks out or less. But again, as full time sitters who are flexible on location, sit length,etc…we have a lot of sits from which to choose.

I get it can be frustrating, but there isn’t much a sitter can do about how HOs handle their listings, nor is there any guarantee a sitter will find sits on the site.

In your case it may just take a bit more time to find listings that work for you, but I am sure with the amount of HOs on here, something will pop up sooner than later!

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The forum is not at all representative. When one looks for the struck-out dates in the calendars of ordinary sitters one sees that most of those have large unbooked periods.

As you wrote, that does not imply that they are available to do sits (work, kids, etc). But some of those sitters might take listings at short notice.

I agree. It is hard to plan for travel when sits are posted so last minute. I applied for one a few months in advance recently and the host said, “oh I’m deleting my listing and will post it a few weeks before our trip”. She said other home owners told her to not post it too early or she won’t get applicants. I’m a home owner too and list mine as early as possible.

Good point @pietkuip :+1:

Things have charged since Covid here in the UK. Lots of flights are not so frequent our European ones from some airports only go twice a week not daily. There are a lot of flight changes and cancellations. We have had a lot of transport strikes, going by train has been difficult. People wait to see if there are last minute offers, money is tight for many. Travel which you previously took for granted no longer exists. Added to the fact here we are now restricted to 90 days maximum in Europe and means we can’t go back until another 90 days have passed all added to the problem. So often people do travel last minute for convenience and cost


Agree, if someone had no commitments leaving things to last minute is great, but it doesn’t make sense to leave things to the last minute if you have pets or a home that needs looking after.
Another thing is the ‘how soon is too early to post an ad’ posts on the community. If they are thinking about it at that point they should be posting their ad straight away.
It’s strange.


Sometimes last minute postings are just perfect! Today we confirmed a sit starting next Thursday (6 days away) in UK and we are still in Germany & not driving over till next week. (We haven’t even booked the ferry yet!!) The sit only popped up yesterday but fits our needs perfectly and looks lovely!
In contrast-earlier this year- in January we were in Bali and were invited to a sit in Spain for June! We accepted and ended up building a fabulous 6 month France & Spain tour around that first sit! We just finished it last week!
So to summaruse- we book far ahead or very short notice depending on our needs at the time. Its always changing.
I do believe their is a sit for everyone and a sitter for every host!


I agree with your points. I know everyone has different needs. I live in New England, US, and cannot fly so I travel by car regionally (with the ongoing pandemic, I don’t use any public transit). I also look mostly for country or suburban sits, again so that I can social distance during covid. Maybe in my region, the Northeast US, there don’t happen to be many homeowners planning months ahead for relatively short getaways (3-10 days, which is my preferred sit time). But I have had nine wonderful sits in the past couple of years since I joined THS and continue to peruse the opportunities that arise every day!