No or few applicants

Hi everyone,
I’ve only been a member four months but my first sitter was lovely and we have both left good feedback. I have a weekend request out there but haven’t had a single enquiry. I do have three more sitters booked this year, but each time I’ve only had one applicant! Am I doing something wrong? Advice very welcome please.

Hi Christine,

It would be useful if you could attach your listing as it’s v difficult to give feedback without knowing more about your sit offer.

I would say, though, that unless the location is highly desirable for a weekend break (like Paris, or Barcelona or New York or something, ie where accommodation is in high demand and expensive) a short sit can be less attractive for sitter due to travel costs/people prioritising longer sits.

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Hi @Christine17

You would have to link your listing for us to be able to comment.

Here is how to do that


Hmmm, I did wonder if it was too short to be worth the effort. Thank you
I’ll have a go at attaching my listing! Thank you!

Well, I’ve added my link!
Reading through it, I wonder if I ‘sell’ my location well enough in the opening sentences.
I think I’ll have a go at amending it.
Any advice still very welcome.
Thank you!

Hello @Christine17 ,
Shadow looks so sweet and your house inviting, the location would appeal to me too, I think you describe it well, especially the fact that one can reach different areas by transit.

May I suggest that you move a photo of Shadow so that it becomes the first photo? He looks so handsome and has such warm eyes, he would steal a heart or two.

Also, I would add a couple more details under the Responsibilities section.

  • how long can he be left alone for? So far we get the vague idea that he’s an easy going fella, but details would be appreciated.
  • do the sitters have to give him the shots for his condition? How hard is that? How does he respond?

Good luck in finding someone suitable.

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Hi @Christine17

Your ad is absolutely lovely. I just adore shadow and can tell he would be a joy to take care of. Your home is beautiful and tidy and you come across as a kind and considerate homeowner.

I really don’t think you will have any issues finding a lovely sitter. It’s only a short sit which is still a few months away so people might not have planned that far ahead yet.

Usually we would apply for dates like yours after we have firmed up longer dates and we are filling in any gaps. I’ve only just started noticing the April May dates starting to come through in the last week and we have secured two big sits now taking us to early May so likely others in the same position.

I don’t think you should change anything - your first picture of your living room is very inviting and clean and tidy and with your title saying Labrador I was pulled in to look at the rest of your ad.

Best of luck, stay patient they will absolutely come through


Hi, I also think you should add if you are in walking distance to a grocery store, restaurants, shops. Maybe that was in there, but I didnt read or see it.


If the sit is still a few months out and only a weekend sit, as a sitter I wouldn’t respond to it (yet). As has been said here, first I try to fill in longer sits (in my case that’s sits of only 1-3 wks) before making any decisions on whether I want to do a weekend sit. E.g. I don’t want to reduce my chances of getting an interesting longer sit by booking myself up for 2-3 days quite long in advance.

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If you continue to have no applicants for your current listing, it might help to relieve your Sitter of any cleaning and laundry responsibility. 3 nights (4 days) in a home with a black lab is just enough time to warrant spending a few hours cleaning and washing sheets and towels on the last day. That is a lot of work for only 3 nights’ stay! You would need to make this clear up front in the listing, to entice applicants, and specify that it only applies to the shorter 3 night Sit.


That’s good advice. Every time I’ve considered a short sit, I think, I’d rather not deal with the cleaning and such and instead just rent a hotel room. You’d widen your candidate pool if you’re open to skipping cleaning and washing. Of course, you still want to look at sitters’ reviews and try to pick one who doesn’t leave your house a mess.


I agree with what others have said about the cleaning, although I’d be happy to strip the bed and put bedding in washing machine ready to go. I think sitters worry they’ll get a poor review if they don’t leave the place immaculate and it’s a lot to ask for just a weekend.

On top of that, I’d lead with the fact that it’s an ideal place to explore Winchester from (which has a great art gallery and is a lovely place to have lunch/explore).

Following this, as others have said it’s a good idea to indicate how long Shodow can be left for to be able to do this. Some HO often say something like ‘Shadow can be left for up for 5 hours after a long walk’, which would allow people a decent amount of time to go to Winchester etc.

Hope that’s helpful.

Thank you everyone for your kind replies and advice. It makes perfect sense that sitters will be looking for longer sits first, then filling in the gaps, so I won’t panic yet!
I’ll look at making other points clearer in my listing too.
It’s so lovely of you to take the time to reply!


Hey, Christine! A lot of sitters like to see the front exterior and any outdoor areas available for them to relax in. Alton looks really cute, some photos of that would be good – there are a ton at Category:Alton, Hampshire - Wikimedia Commons

Hi Christine
It’s Winchester Mayfest that weekend - if you mention that it might appeal to someone.