Just concerned that we have found ‘some’ homeowners (the majority are wonderful, and we’ve encountered more than 50!) are not quite as honest as could be when listing ‘Amenities’. Some recent examples; ‘Oven’, but there’s no working oven (and we’re on a 5 week Sit); ‘BBQ’, it was gas but no gas cylinder; ‘Bathroom essentials’, ONE open box of facial tissues in lieu of toilet paper, the only component of bathroom essentials; ‘BBQ’ (“Oh, there’s a pot belly stove in the shed… somewhere”); ‘Public transport available locally for shopping’ (never existed apparently although HO “thought” it did. We’re Sitters without a car and no Taxi nor Uber/other services in area either); ‘WiFi, strong’, but shared with neighbour and blocked after 9 pm… difficult for us as International Sitters with time zones.
These selected examples make it a tad annoying when encountered after arrival.
Surely we don’t have to confirm them independently at our ‘Meet and Chat’ time before confirming the Sit when the HO has listed them?
I’m considering requesting THS to message Home Owners with a reminder about listing amenities honestly not just ticking a box!
Over to you, Sitters/Home Owners, for comments.
Wow! I’ve not done as many sits but never come across something like those examples. On one sit a “hyper local” coffee shop was a 45 minute walk away which I thought was stretching the truth a bit!
Maybe we’ve been really lucky though
Most HOs don’t lie this way and I’d suggest not trying to correct for such people by treating others suspiciously. Frankly, people like your HOs are liars and will do it regardless of what you ask. Meanwhile, normal people would never dream of acting like that, even if they weren’t asked about such things.
If HOs lied in ways that kept me from telecommuting, I’d leave the sit.
In your case, it makes sense to contact THS and see what they say if you tell them you’re considering leaving. How are you supposed to get food, for instance?
Tasmazias, please make sure you are mentioning these discrepancies in your reviews otherwise future sitters will also run into the same issues.
We have luckily not come across this so far, the ones you mentioned are pretty major.
What did the homeowners say when you pointed them out?
It’s difficult to believe ‘some’ HO would just simply ‘lie’ about amenities being available. Personally every statement in my file is 100% accurate and I feel sure the vast majority of HO are the same.
You say your complaints are ‘recent examples’ ?The implication being that the complaints are a compilation of several sits! Quite obviously you are singularly unlucky in choosing your sits so perhaps to avoid any future bad luck quiz your sitters in fine detail!! Don’t forget to list knives and forks and perhaps a bed to sleep on!! With your luck your next sit won’t have either!!!
Currently on sit #68 and not had such problems at all. It looks like you’ve been extremely unlucky and you should most definitely be reporting the owners to THS.
In the amenities it said “Shower” - but there was only a shower head on a hose in the bath tub. No way to mount it on the wall, no shower cabin, not even a curtain. Also in the text a mention of “enjoying your shower”.
Well, at least this is not as terrible as the Wifi disappearing at 9 pm!
@pietkuip , In this case it’s important to see a picture of the shower. I often go through my own amenities list, e. g. microwave, coffee maker, toaster or toaster oven, live TV, fire extinguisher , etc. in the pre-sit video call as a double check.
One issue can be that the amenities were accurate when the listing was originally created (which can be years ago ) and hasn’t been updated.
THS is just a platform for introducing sitters and HomeOwners . I recommend that for amenities that are vital to your stay do your own checks before confirming the sit .
For example if wi-fi for work during your stay is important - you can ask HO to give you a screenshot of the Wi-Fi speed or have a video call with them so that you can see if it’s “up to speed”.
If you are going to be relying on local public transport to get around ; ask the home owner before confirming the sit - how far is the local shop / supermarket… so which bus number gets me there / how far is the stop from the home / how frequent/ how much does it cost ?
If home owner doesn’t have the information you can do your own research ( Google ) and if you can’t find the answer then don’t confirm the sit .
I would include in my feedback as a warning to future sitters for example “ WiFi, strong’, but shared with neighbour and blocked after 9 pm… ”
If Homeowner has actually lied / mislead you - about an important amenity you can report them to member services ( with screenshots of conversations as evidence ).
I’ve had the opposite experience recently re HOs using the not accessible by public transport button when there was a pretty well serviced bus stop outside the back gate - maybe 5 min walk from the front door. Otherwise I don’t often look at the amenities list except maybe to confirm something like a pool. I wouldn’t expect someone to say that there is an oven or a sink or a shower. Those should all be a given and if not available for whatever reason the owner should explicitly say that in the description (and repeat it in the chat and again in the notes). They are a minimum baseline.
Hi @Tasmazias , if all those examples were from one home host then they were a terrible host. If they were from a number of different home hosts then you have been unbelievably unlucky!
Don’t let it put you off applying for more sits, you surely have used up all your bad luck and are due plenty of great pet & house sits from now on.
We are currently on our 48th and have never encountered anything like that. As @B1anca says, our worst thing is the opposite - On numerous occasions, we have read ‘not accessible by public transport’, only to find that what they mean is that the bus stop isn’t on their doorstep!
We never look at the amenities but maybe we’re odd! And we’re also digital nomads who managed a three week off grid sit with a 10 minute bike ride to a WiFi café in rural Thailand #wheretheresawilltheresaway
@Cuttlefish haha must admit I rarely look either.
Sure, but some things one takes for granted.
I choose to believe that most HO’s are honest. My last sit the HO contacted me to say that unfortunately their oven had broken and the replacement parts would arrive well after my sit. However they had bought a small kitchen top oven and hoped I was ok with this.
Yes, absolutely great Hosts out there, occasionally one, maybe one plus, disappoint! We assumed the oven worked as the home appliances were very new. When we asked to be shown correct way to use, the answer was vague. A follow up text to the Home Owners after their departure when we realized it wasn’t going to work was “Sorry, use the microwave!”.
Thank goodness we (my husband is brilliant) bounce issues off each other, have a giggle and compensate by coping! Thank you for your response.
@Cuttlefish I also never look at the amenities tab!
Not sure where you are, but I would say if you are sitting in the U.S. I would definitely confirm what the mass transit options are before confirming a sit if I didn’t have a car. Car owners in many suburbs and rural areas may honestly see a bus and know there is a bus route nearby and check it off in j amenities without really thinking about it or knowing how inadequate it is. I wouldn’t even take the HOs word for it unless they actually don’t have a car and use it. I’d get the address or a close enough cross street address and check it on google maps before confirming. As a homeowner, I list the nearby transit on my listing, and also mention that I don’t have a space, so car owner sitters will have to deal with street parking and parking rules. As a sitter I always mention mass transit and whether or not a car is needed when I review a sit. (Doesn’t change the rating, but it’s there for information for future sitters.)
We haven’t discovered anything like that, the amenities have been pretty accurate. the only exception would be the wifi reception, but that’s down to what different people perceive as ‘good’ reception, based on their past broadband providers, so I can understand that one.
In the US there are some wonderful places with bike paths, but many where you would be risking your life biking or even walking to town – roads with no shoulders or sidewalks. However, IMO if you were nomadic in the US, and had the funds, it would be well worth it to rent a car to better enjoy those stays if the HO didn’t make a car available.