Luxury Home Worries

I feel like kind of a jerk asking this question, but here goes: We live in a luxury home (14K sq feet) with many valuable items in it, in a desirable area. We would love to use this service but are worried about finding people who are trustworthy. We have been burned by housesitters before—not through TH. Any tips for how to find someone trustworthy? Red flags we should look out for? Thanks so much!!


Hello @CAhomeowner and a warm welcome to the Community Forum :wave:t2::slightly_smiling_face:

This link attached is for your reference, but just to confirm all sitters are verified. However you can also complete your own checks. We were asked by the owners of a 40 room English Country Stately House, where we looked after 12 horses, to provide copies of our criminal records check, in England known as DBS checks, which we were more than happy to supply.

Another good way of finding out about potential sitters is to read their reviews from their completed sits and of course to have a video call before agreeing to any sit. This way you can get a good feeling about them and who they are. Of course this also gives both sides the opportunity to ask any questions.

Also for reference once you are a member, and your listing is completed you can also add your TrustedHousesitters profile on to your Forum profile by following the attached link, should you wish. This will then enable others to offer you helpful advice and feedback and will also give your listing extra exposure!

I have also attached a video for you to have a look at to show you how it all works.

Also, remember you can use the spyglass symbol at the top of the page next to the TrustedHousesitters logo and search for any questions that you may have as they have most likely already been answered on here and of course if not then please just ask!

I hope this helps. :blush:

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We have sat homes worth USD$25,000,000 and homes worth USD$125,000.
Have sat where there were musical instruments, art, vehicles worth hundreds of thousands.
Many of the high end homes we’ve sat (I’m calling that USD$5M and up) did not post the sit: instead, they looked for sitters willing to do a sit in their area, found us with our dozens of 5* reviews, and contacted us directly.
So the home never appeared in the listings.
Don’t know where you are, chances are not somewhere I’m likely to want to do a sit any time soon (we’re booked through July on repeat sits), so these tips are general suggestions:
(1) Look for people who have lots of 5* reviews. When you see only a handful of reviews, could be they aren’t as experienced as you’d prefer, or maybe they agreed with a HO not to complain about each other?
(2) Look for people with a reason to take your sit: win-win is what THS is all about. For example, someone who already has plans to travel to your area, or visiting family/friends there. That means you’re less likely to get “stood up.” (As homeowners that happened to us!)
(3) Read their profile: are these people you’d like to meet for a drink? Then chances are you’ll be comfortable trusting them with your home & things.
(4) Check their references: did they do the police check? Do you tell you they have a Trusted Traveler or Nexus card? (That means the FBI has checked them out!) Do they offer you their LinkedIn or TripAdvisor profiles so you can find out about them?
(5) When they apply, do they offer you easy communication (Email or phone number or WhatsApp accounts)? You want to know you can be in touch and that they’re exactly who they say they are.
Hope that is helpful!


We too live in a “luxury” home, but have been using THS for a number of years, with nothing but positive experiences. We have a cleaner comes once a week, and we like to guarantee her hours while we’re away, also it gives them another local contact with literal inside knowledge of the home in case of need or emergency. She knows how we like things, and the sitters never complain about having help with what is an otherwise daunting prospect given the size of our place!


@CAhomeowner , I also want to welcome you to the forum. I understand your caution. There are a number of spectacular homes on the site. By choosing your sitter carefully-- @ASASG and @Samox24 gave you some good tips, you can have excellent and trustworthy care for your pet(s) and home. There are many, many excellent and very experienced sitters on the site. Read profiles and reviews, have a video chat and do not rush.

THS has a 5 application policy. After you have received five applications, your listing is automatically paused. If none of the first five seem right, decline them and you will be able to receive additional applications until you once again reach 5. I feel pretty confident that you will find a sitter who seems perfect and your pets and home will benefit from in-home care. You may very well find sitters you love and will ask back again and again.


You will know by their application and the video call. Go by your instincts. Is there an office or room that you can lock? Put all the valuable items AND documents in there and lock the door. I say documents as well because there has been a couple of times personal letters and bills have been left lying around.
Red flags, wanting to know too much about the property and no questions about the pets, talking about what they want to do in the area but no mention of pet care, asking too many personal questions.
I’m sure you’ll find a great and trustworthy sitter on THS who will love your pets and look after your property.


A post was merged into an existing topic: Conclusion Of Pausing Application Test - Updated Post

There are many pet parents on THS in luxury homes, and I’m speaking from personal experience… we’ve already sat for a number of them, especially in NYC and CA. From our conversations and their reviews of previous sitters, I have never seen anything that suggested an issue.

Although there are no guarantees (even in life), the sitters must have a background check (it was an option when we first joined, which we took). Anyway, I would imagine, is the best precautionary measure anyone really could take.

Then, of course, there are the bios, reviews and actually speaking to potential sitters. You do have plenty of opportunities to “get to know your potential sitter”.

And lastly, it does cost a couple hundred a year to be a member, so that would be a deterrent.

I trust this helps.


Hi @CAhomeowner , welcome to the group. I can understand your concern but do not worry, do your normal due diligence when choosing your sitters.
Read their previous reviews and always have a video call with them asking any questions you may have to relieve your concerns.
There are many ‘luxury’ houses listed on trusted house sitters so your sitters will not be phased by your property and will most likely have seen it all before.
It is my opinion that it is very difficult to go wrong when using this service, there are so many fantastic sitters listed!
There has to be a level of trust when using Trusted house sitters ( it says so on the can) but common sense and gut feeling will make it as near to guaranteed as it is possible to get that the sitter you choose will be amazing.
Good luck !


Thanks, everyone, for the warm welcome and your responses! They are very helpful and reassuring.


Another tip:
There’s no need to show the full luxuriousness of your home in your listing photos.
You can just give the potential sitter an idea of what their bed, bathroom, and kitchen will be like.

This can help weed out anybody who may be looking more for luxury accommodations than they are for cuddly animals to care for. :slight_smile:

For example, a sit I applied for only posted photos of the inside of the guest house I would stay in, and a general idea of what the outdoor areas looked like. (Plus photos of the pets, of course!) … So when I showed up to sit, I had no idea what the inside of their main house looked like. And I didn’t need to!

On the other hand, some people kind of show off their property in their listing, with many gorgeous photos. They may get more applications, which would give them a bigger pool of applicants to choose from.

You get to choose how you represent your home; everybody does it a little differently!

Pay close attention to reviews, of course. Do interview your potential sitters.
And don’t settle! If you feel weird about someone, let them down gently and keep looking!

There are tons of hyper-responsible, ethical, discreet, experienced animals lovers on this site. :smiling_face_with_three_hearts: :trophy:


Spot on @luckycat! We sat for two dogs in a luxury home in acres of fields that on arrival had a huge outdoor jacuzzi, a separate sauna and a stocked gentlemen’s bar, all of which were at our disposable. The rest of the home was also huge and very stylish. This wasn’t shown on the listing exactly for that reason, they wanted dog and countryside lovers who were respectful and very clean and tidy. It had worked for them for years :+1:


Welcome to this site. We’re new to this also. We joined, as we are now Retired and would like to escape Southern Australias next few winters and travel to Europe and hopefully experience a few different local communities.

You have some great ideas to use on here. It’s a great forum.

Just one thing from a “Sitters” view. We like to holiday somewhere warm and we also happen to absolutely adore animals and gardens, the property having a Swimming Pool, is a nice to have (so Pool at least worth listing).

I’m sure sure other sitters are same as the sit should be amicable for both parties.


We’ve had owners of pricey properties ask to contact previous home-owners we have sat
for directly to check references. We got some of our previous sits who were willing to do this passed their details on. You could try this approach. You can also restrict applicants to a minimum number for reviews.
You could also consider using a paid service with insurance to look after your home and pets if you are concerned that anyone doing it for free is not trustworthy.


Similar to @luckycat, we did a sit where just the parts of the house of specific interest to the sitter were included in the photographs–enough to appeal but nothing out of the ordinary. When we arrived to the amazing garden estate the HO told us that her listing was purposeful so it limited applicants to those who were interested in the location and pets, not the wonderful home. In your listing include photos of the kitchen (working area, seating), a living area, bedroom and bathroom for the sitter but you don’t have to include a lot more than that (unless there are other areas the sitter will be required to care for).

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Welcome @CAhomeowner. I understand your concerns. In just under a year on THS I’ve been lucky enough to sit in homes from studio apartments to 2 million pound luxury homes. I think you’ll find many great sitters that will look after your pets and your home with upmost care.
There multiple layers to being a sitter with THS and that is firstly THS verifies all sitters and secondly you can see from the feedback how reliable and good a sitter the person is.


@CAhomeowner We have sat in many luxury homes around the world and sometimes, as others have said, we’ve been amazed by the true extent of the luxury on arrival. We do choose lovely homes but we also have to love the pets! E g however beautiful a home we would not sit for certain dog breeds, reptiles (!!), or large menageries that require complicated care beyond our expertise, or other duties beyond normal house/pet care. The location and dates have to work too ofcourse.
So its the whole package we look for.
Some owners - often around our own age-(59/60) have specifically told us they chose us because of our maturity, life experience (world travellers, multiple property owners, landlords, practical skills) and our very many excellent reviews. We are not phased by a large property as perhaps a younger person whose never owned/cared for a property might be. We take it all in our stride and love to be temporary guardians of gorgeous homes! (e.g that Lord & Lady of the manor feeling in UK!) Its a privilidge to be trusted in this way & we don’t abuse that trust. We are always very respectful of the hosts home and possessions (as we are anyway to all hosts)and welcoming to any staff- cleaners, gardeners etc

I would just say-choose your sitters very carefully. Take your time- ask & answer all the questions, have one or more video calls- whatever is needed to get to know them a bit.
Important-Do you have a good gut feeling towards them? I.e do they inspire you with confidence & trust? Do they show lots of interest in your pets? Are they receptive towards any particular needs of your pets or property? You should never have the feeling you are handing your keys over to complete strangers! Make sure that by the time the sit starts you have established a strong rapport with your chosen sitters so that they feel familiar to you and you can happily welcome them into your home! If you don’t build up that good feeling of mutual trust you may find yourselves anxious while you are away. The aim of THS is to create a trusting environment for everyone to relax and enjoy their host/sitter experience.
Good luck! :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:


I agree with the other posters that have said you should be able to find trustworthy sitters here. We take extreme pride in our care of animals and the people we’ve sat for have appreciated how we took care of their pets and homes.

I agree with the notion of playing down the home itself and focus on the pets and your expectations. i.e. show the room the sitter would be staying in but not mention the other 7 bedrooms. Let that be a surprise after you’ve talked with them. Meet the potential sitters through video calls and see who you’re comfortable with. Trust your gut feelings.
I’m not sure whether it would violate any THS guidelines but if I wouldn’t hesitate providing you with contact information from other people we’ve sat for if that would provide you with a greater comfort level. (After making sure they were ok with that, too.) They have provided feedback but if you had other questions for them, you could ask.

Dan and Nan

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Hi there
Lots of good tips but I would also add one that I had not thought of asking about for one of our recent pet/house sits we did, actually 2 pointers in fact!
1 Do not assume that your pet/house sitters will understand any idiosyncracies related to your home/pets/property. We recently had the unfortunate experience of a hot water pipe in the laundry not being connected to the washing machine. After having the gorgeous little doggy down at the beach swimming and digging holes in the sand, we brought him home, washed and dried him and I wanted to do a warm wash to make sure the towels were all clean. Therein followed a cascade of water (hot!) down the back of the cabinet, out on the floor and into the hallway (carpeted) and powder room! The worst part was there was no mention of the open water pipe in the detailed guide and instructions, and on informing the houseowners we were told it had happened before! We had sleepless nights as a result and much angst. Fortunately, the houseowners were very understanding, much to our relief! Not that I imagine your home would have anything like that to worry about - but this house was also a very nice home.
2. Many of us house sitters use more than one site, depending on the country we are in, so while some may not have many reviews/feedback on THS, it is quite possible that they could copy their other reviews and send them to you if you so wished. I have done this for some of the sits we have done in the past.
Good luck with your choice of sitter - I’m sure you will find the perfect fit here.


Great advice @Lokstar.

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