Possible water damage - will THS 3rd party ins cover anything

We left the pup, as we had all of the first ten days of the sit, then one morning, when out for a couple of hours, the bidet in the upper bathroom went off or was turned on by the dog. We had been diligent to make sure the bathroom door was closed and latched every time we left, so no way to know what actually happened. The water dripped down into the basement causing water damage to the ceiling in the laundry room and some carpet. I have taken pictures of everything as it is when we are leaving today. We informed the HO as soon as we got the situation under control that day. I wrote her via THS and text (the way she communicated) We got no instructions from her, just that she got the message and would reach out to THS. So here finally are my questions, what responsibility do we have, if any? Is there anything beside taking pictures, I need to do to document what things looked like when we left? And does the THS 3rd party insurance cover this type of situation?

Sounds like you did some good first steps. Have you contacted member services?
Note that in the chat box, ask to speak to a human.

What a stressful situation!! Accidents happen.
It is the owners who will be the ones making a claim under their own home insurance policy . You have notified them promptly and done all that they have asked you to do . Plus documenting with photos which is a good idea. As the sit finishes today, and the owners are due to return home that is all that you can do .

If you have not already , you could add the messages and photos to the THS inbox conversation between you and the Homeowner so that it is documented on the THS platform and not just WhatsApp or whatever means you have been communicating with them.

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Adding this here in case something similar happens to another sitter:

In case of leaks and such, one key thing is to get as much water off the floor and any surfaces ASAP. Then rent dehumidifiers and industrial fans and aim them at where the water leaked or soaked. The faster you can help dry things out, the better you can prevent mold and further damage, which can become even more expensive to remediate. (Water that seeps into wood and other building materials and stays trapped can lead to mold within walls and between floors and ceilings.)

In areas with unattached carpeting or rugs, remove what you can so it’s not sitting on wood flooring, trapping water underneath, if that’s possible to do without damaging anything.

Hang up or prop up rugs or carpeting to dry faster. Be careful with expensive rugs, because you don’t want to hang them in ways that can damage them. If they’re wet to the touch, get lint-free, color-free towels or rags and blot away as much moisture as possible.

If there’s a lot of standing water, use a shop vacuum to suck it up. Some homeowners have these. You also can rent them.

Of course, you should make sure that the host is OK with you doing all of these things before attempting them, but this is common with such leaks. You also can hire companies that will do such work and they’ll have all the equipment.


The HO had a wet rug cleaner that I used to suck up as much water as possible and we did get a fan. If we had hired a company or rented more industrial type equipment, would we have been reimbursed for that? thru THS or the HO’s insurance?

The homeowners insurance company should arrange all the drying out equipment. Dry everything as much as possible and take pictures as has been done here but then its up to the owner to put in a claim. Some insurance companies may not pay if a 3rd party is in the house when the claim happens. I did 5 weeks on a sit and in the UK and a lot of policies only cover 30 days leaving the house empty, but in the UK a sitter staying is fine but not everywhere. My home owner had to give them my name and pay a bit extra premium so she was covered for the full time I was there

Typically, insurers should be contacted by the homeowner and, depending on their policy, the insurer will let the homeowner know how payment and such work (or the homeowner might already know if they’ve had a previous claim). That’s why you would want to talk to the homeowner first and they can decide what they want to do.

Insurers vary widely on their practices and on the kind of claim. In some cases, they might tell a homeowner to do what they need and submit receipts to them. But that’s between the homeowner and them.

If I were the homeowner, I would’ve authorized you to rent what was needed and reimbursed you directly, because insurers usually take a while to pay out. And they would pay the homeowner, not you, because you’re not the policyholder.

Depending on the amount of damage, some homeowners don’t claim small incidents, because their premiums can go up with claims.

Every homeowner should decide these things for themselves, depending on their judgment, finances and insurance. In their place, I would ask you to rent what was needed and get the cleanup done even if I had to pay out of pocket, because unaddressed water damage can become much more costly.