How early to post a house sit

Wow, I wouldn’t even think of cancelling without an extremely good reason, and I would think that’s something you should let THS staff know. There’s no way sitters should cancel unless it’s an emergency. Allowing sitters to do this without a consequence would undermine the whole system.

Home owners shouldn’t be able to cancel sits without every good reason as well.

2 Likes

Hi @MaryLynne if you have mutually agreed the arrangement and a sitter cancels, without good reason, then please contact the Membership Services Team and they will investigate.

We know there can be extenuating circumstances life and emergencies happen, on both sides, however cancellations should never happen without good reason.

1 Like

Thanks. Our first cancellation was the first sit we posted. The house sitter cancelled because after agreeing she was offered a year long sit in Hawaii. That was a way sexier sit than ours. The second cancelled because she decided she wouldn’t be able to handle our active dog. Both of those cancellations were understandable but the last one offered no explanation. Are we entitled to an explanation? We were lucky to find another sitter because sometimes sitters aren’t interested in a week to 10 day sit. I have no interest in reporting them, I just wondered if we should get an explanation. Thanks

1 Like

I much prefer to see advanced postings by HO, I applied for an international sitting which was posted 14 months ahead, it enables you to plan travel, costs and other arrangements.

But best of all you have time to build up a relationship with the HO by regular videocalls etc the biggest concern is booking early flights which might be awkward to change or cancel, so with good communications you can be more confident that things are secure.

4 Likes

HI @MaryLynne letting Membership Services know about a cancellation can help find a solution and a team member will reach out to the sitter and help explain best practices when applying for and arranging their sits. Cancellations are rare but when they happen can cause stress and members losing confidence and we have introduced cancellation insurance as a benefit in the tiered owner memberships.

Arrangements are based on trust, mutual respect and consideration. Any member should give a reason for any cancellation, in fact I cannot imagine how a cancellation might happen without a reason being given, I hope that helps.

MaryLynne, you are most certainly entitled to an explanation. I’d never pull out on a sit, without extreme extenuatiing circumstances. And before I pulled out, I’d be calling THS for advice and offering proof of, for example, a relative’s ill health if that was the reason.
Slightly off topic, but related, is my pet peeve that HO reject without any sort of personalised response.

1 Like

I totally agree. As sitters we don’t like to apply on a sit too far in advance. The only time we did it was for two international sits one of which was five months away and the other nine months away. Both sits worked out wonderfully and gave us ample time to book flights, hotels and plan itineraries as we travelled around on our own after the sits so if the sits are international we’ll apply in advance but nearer to home we won’t.

1 Like

As a sitter I would never cancel on a sit unless I had a valid personal reason and would never cancel just to take on a better offer. We had a death in our immediate family just days prior to a local sit but we still went ahead and did the sit rather than let the homeowners down.

1 Like

We often book out a year in advance, as there are always repeats and referrals in a given year.
Yes, we do ‘miss out’ on sits that look great to us, but we love our repeat pets (and peeps).
If we have a sit scheduled particularly far out, it’s helpful to us to be able to search for other sits to fill the gap - the sooner the better.
You also have the ability to send a group message to every applicant at the same time, in case you wanted to post early, while also communicating that you won’t be making a deciscion right away. That will naturally thin the herd as people move on.
From our experience as well, I’ve noted that regardless of how many applicants your have, you will likely immediately gravitate to a short-list of one or a few sitters. If that happens, I’d suggest trusting your intuition and moving forward.

1 Like

So you can send a group message to every applicant, wow, that is great to know. I totally agree with trusting your intuition!

2 Likes

When I put our sit on a couple of months ago, I had 6 applicants within a few hours, (posted it on a Sunday ev)… I put a sit on for Nov yesterday morning and haven’t had one application yet…As we’re new to this I’m not sure whether that means I need to do something else, or just wait…not panicking yet obviously!

1 Like

Hi @Foldor13 absolutely no reason to panic and there will be some great advice and support here from other members also our Membership Services Team are available with help and advice on posting listings and every other aspect of your membership … @Katie-MembershipServices could you connect with @Foldor13 please?

Having read all the comments here. I’d say that we would be a bit wary of applying for a sit long before the date, as so much can happen on both sides. Probably because once agreed we would feel committed to going whatever the difficulties.
We would never consider cancelling a sit for a better one ( although I sometimes regret that policy!) nor for any other reason except serious health issues or death in the family or again unexpected travel bans.
We do appreciate an answer, even a negative stereotyped one, and find it a bit rude not to get any.
We are not offended at all about being second choice, which is better than a refusal!
Finally we do mind owners cancelling on us, especially when the excuses sound a bit fishy sometimes. We’d find it helpful if, for both owners and sitters, the frequency of their cancellations appeared on their profiles.
Having said that, we are quite happy with the standards of savoir vivre of THS members!!

1 Like

Hi @Jeanmarc and welcome. Interesting idea about the frequency of cancellations being public - that’s something I hadn’t thought of. Luckily, I’ve never had a homeowner cancel on me, the only sits I have had to cancel were last March due to Covid and they were mutual decisions.

When it comes to owners not responding to applications, I look at it as dodging a bullet. If someone can’t be bothered to respond to an application I put time and energy into preparing, they may not be someone I want to sit for!

4 Likes

One thought though is that I could be successful with a sitting and be happy with communication with the owner but I would never know whether that owner responded to the other applicants.

2 Likes

That’s true!

1 Like

Hi @Jeanmarc welcome to our community forum, thank you for joining.

We are a great supportive and sharing community enjoying lively and informative discussions and we can’t wait to get to know you better and share in your THS journey.

Enjoy connecting with other members and once again welcome.

Angela & The Team

@Foldor13, for me as a sitter, November is a long way off. I take accepting a sit very seriously and would only cancel for a very good reason, and so many things could happen in the next six months that I kind of hate to apply for a sit that far off.

For me as a homeowner, I understand how anxious it feels when I don’t yet have a sitter for an upcoming trip, and it’s tempting to post the sit as soon as I have the dates, but I’ve found that for short sits, it’s better to post them no more than 2 months out because I’ll usually get many more applicants if the date is closer, and I like to have a choice. (The exception would be if you’re in a location/have a situation that is so high-demand that even six months out, you get multiple applicants within a couple days – resort areas, tourist destinations, etc.)

1 Like

I had a similar problem, I generally get alot of applicants, but a sit for December only got 2. Luckly I loved one of them. @Angela-CommunityManager , I felt one of the problems was that my sit never appeared in your weekly sit email, not sure why as I posted it on a Sunday plenty of time to hit the Wednesday email. Also, when are daily emails coming back as I think that would be a big help to sitters and HO.

2 Likes

Hi @Peg as soon as listings have increased more and across all markets we will reinstate daily emails, I’m not sure about the weekly listings, will have to check that one.