Question: why send alerts for sits that are under review

So everybody gets these alerts in their phone I guess, for their Saved searches. One clicks on them, immediately, and one gets the white screen with the list of one’s Saved searches.

That is the shoddy way how THS communicates that that sit already had five applicants. That further applications are blocked, that it is marked “Reviewing”.

So my question to @Ben-ProductManager : why are you guys sending out such notifications?


This is something I have not encountered.
I get notifications on my iPhone and my iPad for exactly what I have favorited and while still open to applications.
Regardless of what time zone, even when I’m in the future here in Australia, (still feels weird, wait that’s me :unicorn:).

Sorry I don’t share this to create controversy but rather to say that it’s a “some not an always” situation.

The problems I am seeing now are not technical but human. Meaning, I see more hesitation in responses, sense more fear and uncertainty in HO than before. I imagine that may be the case with sitters as well.
But that’s another topic.

@Amparo hahahaha love your interpretation of being in Oz as being “in the future”. :joy: Glad you are enjoying it so much, say hi to Marty and Doc before your next zone :wink:


Those are the notifications that go out first. Some of those maybe to hundreds or thousands of sitters. Then they may quickly fill up the five applications.

But then up to one hour after that, notifications are sent to sitters who created a Saved search for that city or area. Even when the listing does not accept more applications.

Why is THS doing that? It only causes irritation and aggravation.

Well, @Amparo is correct as all time zones are measured from a starting point at England’s Greenwich Observatory known as the Greenwich Meridian and time there is known as Greenwich Mean Time

@Smiley yes I totally understand it. Just having a laugh about Back to the Future movies which it reminded me of, but I think you meant to tag pietkuip for your reply??

@pietkuip Owners may decline applicants at any time, whether the count is below five or is paused. There’s no way TrustedHousesitters can know at any given time when a listing might be paused, and for how long.

I know of an owner who recently reviewed each application, promptly declining when the applicant was not acceptable. This was in the first hours of listing. They then paused the listing while waiting for a decision from their chosen sitter, who had asked for one day to check some information. The owner said that had the sitter not accepted the sit, their plan was to reopen the listing.

It was the first I’ve experienced an efficient use of the pausing option. However, there’s no way TrustedHousesitters could tell when or if the listing would be paused or not, especially given they also don’t know how promptly a sitter will access the notification or saved search email. Those are variables that I think are way beyond THS’s ability to monitor.


@Snowbird I am not quite sure how the notification algorithm works, but it is my impression that I get a new notification when a sit is unpaused.

When also that gives me a white screen again when I click on it, it only adds to the annoyance.

Edit: Just another one. I feel my phone vibrating, I take it up immediately and click. And then: another utterly incompetent display of a white screen with just the list of my saved searches. It does not make any sense for THS to do this. It harms the company!

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To clarify my problem (the production team at THS does not seem to know what I am talking about) I made a short screen recording of what often happens when I click a brand-new notification on my iPhone:

First screen shows the notification “It’s a match!” time-marked “nu” which is Swedish for “Now”.

Clicking on it calls the THS app to the front, which then proceeds to open the page with my Saved searches.

And there it stays.

Basically, I get a blank screen, totally uninformative.

It is left up to the user to guess what that means.

I guess it means “Haha, too late! There were already at least five other applications, and the listing is closed. We are not even going to tell you what listing it was or what the dates were. But please have a look at the stale listings marked “Low applications”.”

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Thank you @pietkuip The video was a great idea, super helpful to see what is happening. This has been passed to the Product team and they are looking into it. Thank you :slight_smile:

We have encountered the same thing. I get alerts for “saved” sits but when I click on them they are already “reviewing” not allowing us to apply even if we wanted to. This has happened several times. Frustrating.
I am NOT a fan of the “new” 5 application limit. I think it is way too low. 8 would be decent, 10 would be ideal.


I also get this, happens on a daily basis!

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@bellestar Me too, I’ve received 3 alerts today that were already reviewing despite my clicking on the notification immediately. These were sits I had favorited. I get these notifications for sits I can’t apply to every single day. It would be nice if the notifications for favorites were instant rather than an hour or so later or if they don’t send the alert once it goes to reviewing.

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@systaran lol. Me with than 4300 favourites… the majority are already reviewing when I pick up the alerts. 80% of those ‘currently seeking sitters’ (about 300 on any given day day) are actually reviewing. So only 20% are actually open to applications.

The site is running software that is ten years old. I guess THS is over ten times larger now? Then the number of notifications of favourites should be up by over 100-fold. It takes time to process those, they cannot go out really simultaneously I think.

Clearly they have severe problems with scaling up.

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This is common for popular locations. Even with the individual sit favourited it can take several minutes or more to receive the alert. I have seen sits have an application already in the first minute and all 5 in less than 5 minutes so well before you will get the alert.
Either some people are able to automatically apply for sits or they are receiving the alert before anyone else and getting an application done in a matter of seconds. Possibly THS controls who gets first go at the alerts.

The issue is the timeliness of alerts. Since sits in popular locations fill quickly it’s critical to get alerts right away. An hour or so later is far too late. The only way to apply to a sit in a popular location is to be online at all times and be constantly refreshing the screen. That’s not a reasonable expectation for customers to be able to fully utilize our membership. One of the benefits of my premium membership is supposed to be instant alerts.

At the moment I am waiting to see how long to get a notification for a favorite. I happened to be online when a sit that I had favorited showed up with new dates. It’s been about 45 minutes so far and I haven’t received a notification yet. This is a major issue that THS needs to address if they are going to continue blocking apps at 5.


Very interesting point @Keldin. I hate to even put the thought into words in case THS haven’t thought of it already but what is to stop them sending alerts to the newest members first? That would bolster their business plan of more new sitters and just 1 sit per year for each sitter. :face_with_symbols_over_mouth:

@Saltrams First they send them internally, maybe, as one of the perks?

  • Our team have an unlimited housesitting allowance, can work remotely from their sits, and TrustedHousesitters will contribute up to £500 per year towards travel costs
  • Access to Spaces Locations across the globe

I’d long accepted this was the case @pietkuip and I can’t blame them. I was an airline child & travelled the world for free once upon a time. Perks are being devalued in every walk of life and should be treasured.