Question for sitters

You have applied for a sit.
Ho responds what is your expectations
You expect from this sit.
Do you think its rude or just Ho being careful.

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I don’t think it’s rude, I think it’s strange ! If the owner contacts you i guess your mail has pleased him, your profile too. Strange…

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I have found that some HO approach is almost like a job interview - some feel that by allowing a sitter to look after their home and pet they are employing you.
I have, I think, quite an extensive profile detailing my work history, my previous experience, my plans etc.
I have seen some sitters profiles with very little information so HO must feel the need for a bit more information.
Only once in all my sits (+40) have I had a homeowner ask for more information, in fact, she asked for contact details from previous HO’s to check out how suitable I would be, even though at that point I had 30+ 5* reviews on THS. I know that some of my HO would not mind, but where does this end? So I withdrew from the sit.
I don’t think it is rude to ask for expectations/more information, but if a profile and an application are well written, most things should be covered. I still have a VC with most HO, but also some have confirmed sits based completely on my application and Profile.

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The only think i check as an HO is on phone, through Whatsapp, they really speak enough french when they promise they do.
But reviews and feedbacks + profiles and applications are enough.

I must confess after a horrible first experience as an HO (through another organization, before THS) i do not select anymore sitters with no feedbacks. For sure we all need to begin, to get références but having owned animals is not enough for me now when i seek sitters.
As a sitter, i would think the HO has faced bad experiences in the past If s/ he asks me more details than the ones i provided…
Are we allowed to give HO téléphone to another HO? Angela what do you think?

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@provence I wouldn’t have given phone numbers or contact without permission, kind of what I meant by “where does it end”…the ho had actually used THS 3 times, had never given a review, and had only received one feedbaack from previous sitters - so I detected an issue…so I declined the sit.

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Thought it was just me.
But hubby refused to do that sit.
He thought it rude

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@Provence any off site communication between members should be conducted with privacy as the main consideration and no exchanging any personal information without full disclosure and written permission.

If an owner requests another owner’s number the only way to handle that is to get permission from the the requesting owner to pass on their number to the other owner and leave it up to them to open up communications, or not.

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It depends on the context of the rest of the message, but if that was all that was said I would find that quite rude and would withdraw form the application.

As @Petermac said, some HO feel like they are employing sitters and forget that it is a mutually beneficial agreement. But I guess TrustedHousesitters is just the middleman and there are no hard and fast rules on how to proceed after an application.

We have a much more pleasant experience with homeowners who get that both sides have to trust one another and treat us as people not staff.

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I think there’s an inference in this thread that HOs are asking intrusive questions for no good reason. Here’s what I do:

  1. short list from the applicants
  2. Skype/zoom interview with the shortlist
  3. Complete the sheet hat Trusted Housesitters gives us with suggested questions to which I add my own.
  4. Narrow it down to 1 or 2 people, & then ask if they can provide referee contacts that I can email or call. I have no way of knowing if the short, usually very general, reference paragraphs on the THS website are genuine. I have maybe 3 questions I ask the referees.
  5. I make my final decision & then ask for copy of passport, home address, copy of police check or similar and confirm that I want proof of travel arrangements (e.g. airline ticket) about 2 weeks before the sit.
  6. Only once everything is checked and agreed do I give my full address and make final arrangements.

Sitters need to realise we are inviting strangers into our homes; much is based on trust, but a sensible HO will do as much robust & stringent research as possible. Imagine if it all went horribly wrong & we had to admit to our insurers that we didn’t know the person who was in our home while we were away & didn’t know how to contact them again!

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Of course we appreciate that you can have your own process and do it your way. It’s all about doing what is comfortable for yourself, but we would not sit for you if that is what you require.

We get that you are letting strangers into your home, but we are also putting ourselves in a situation which requires trusting the homeowner. And feel that the trust needs to work both ways.

Would you accept an applicants if they asked you for referees, house deeds, vet certificates, proof that you are going away etc…

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Actually, it does amaze me that sitters don’t ever ask for any sort of proof of anything. If I were a sitter, yes, I’d want something along the lines you suggest. As a HO I’d be happy to supply it.

I can’t operate on blind trust and I think as a HO I have far more to lose in terms of my beloved pets and my home.

Lynda, do you really ask the proof of the airline ticket BEFORE confirming the sitter ? So what, if you don’t confirm the sitter, s/he will have paid his fares (plane, train etc.) without being sure you choose him/her
THS asks sitters to give their identity, check passeports or ID. This is not enough for you ??

On both sides, I agree with other members trust has to be.
By the way, when you write “reptiles” on your listing, do you precise which ones , I would have loved to see your reptile creatures, asked for photos, you never answered me on that forum. Strange…

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No, it’s all confirmed usually months in advance, I ask for a copy of the tickets a couple of weeks before the sit. By that time we’ll have had a lot of conversations about the best airport to use to get to me, maybe I’ll pick them up, etc.

I don’t generally post pictures of my pets or tell people where I live as there’s a huge trade in stolen reptiles in this country.

Forgot to add the point I made before somewhere - THS doesn’t share with HOs copies of passports, ID checks, etc, just expects us to accept they are done. My home isn’t insured if I give a stranger a key without taking every precaution!

@Lynda, I’m a HO and a sitter as well so I understand both sides.
I, too, give my insurance company the names of people who come to my home (as my own insurance follows me where I am while there are sitters in my home)

I know “my” pet sitters" real first name and family name because I ask them (I can’t imagine they would lie to me, especially if they have good feed backs) and I trust THS they have done the job correctly asking for id.

When I wrote I would like to see the photos it’s because I thought on that forum it was interesting to see what kind of reptiles you own, we don’t know your adress, your full name (Lynda might not be your real first name) either.

I hate reptiles, I’m scared by them but between alligators and lezards, dangerous or non dangerous snakes, frog (are they reptiles ?) the range is wide. I was curious. I did not plan to rob your reptiles !

When you rent through Airbnb or any other company, you never know who comes in your place, you don’t ask their passport, if you rent some flat or home during holidays, Airbnb asks you your passport once but you may move, the adress might be different and the owner will never know.

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I think I would be a bit put off by that question and I know my husband would be really put off! We were asked to provide our driver licences once when we were shortlisted for a sit. My husband was put off by this but I talked him into agreeing. We have sit for the couple four times now and they won’t even consider anyone else looking after their dog and we have become great friends with them. So I think you have to go with your gut sometimes.

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Well said.

@Annette, my car cannot be driven by somebody who has a new licence, a "young "driver, even If s/he is 40. My insurance company is ok for drivers who have had more than 3 years expérience. So how could i know without asking for the copy of the driver’s license?
This does not sound scandalous…

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So you are saying Ths aren’t doing their job
(They just acccept us)?

They didn’t ask this because we were driving their car - we live in the same city. They asked strictly for identification purposes. Funny though the two sits we’ve done where the homeowners loaned us their vehicles, we weren’t asked for our driver’s licence!

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