Hi Am Jean, retired and recently moved to France, with no specific idea as to where I would like to put down roots, so someone suggested this option and the more I thought the more it made sense to be finding out about different areas in Europe whilst doing something I enjoy, I have had pets all my life and now on my own, it’s a good way to have company and look around to consider the area, as a possibility for me, almost like a hop on/off city tour bus. Reading the forum is really useful way to get others valuable experiences and views of the responsibility involved. I look forward to maybe making a contribution in the future. Before coming to France I have lived in Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa, I speak English, French and Italian.
Hello, @Jeanav09 I would like to extend you a warm welcome to the community forum. I agree what a great way to explore different locations and with the companionship of pets. It sounds like you have lots of great experience with travel and being a pet owner, so I am sure that you will enjoy being a member of the site.
Here on the forum, you can use the spyglass to search for previous topics and learn more about the site and housesitting.
If you need any help joining the site or navigating the forum please do not hesitate to let me know.
exactly, Jean. A warm welcome from another brand new member, and a delighted Sitter, also exploring where to grow my roots, heal my roots and explore 99%, so most all of my ancestral homelands across The Sacred Isles of The UK.
I have lived on Maui for 15 years, 3 years in Taos, New Mexico as a Refugee of Lockdown, and was born in California, so I know exactly what you describe.
Trusted Housesitters is a wonderful world of opportunities. I have been applying for a week, have had many caring replies, and it has allowed me to realize what I need to do moving forward in this chapter. It is a very rich experience being here.
Wishing you great joy along your road to a successful new home, Jean, and many cuddles and comforting Sits as you care for animals, homes and gardens you are invited to nurture.
Aloha, Love, Claire
Hello @Jeanav09 and welcome to the Community Forum
Once you are a member of TrustedHousesitters you can link your profile from there on to your profile on here by following the attached link, should you wish. This will also allow others to help to give you advice and feedback and secure those all important sits.
Which part of France are you currently based and whereabouts do you think you might like to house sit first?
Hi Claire, thank you for the warm welcome and I wish you what I wish for myself a successful run of really pleasant sits. This really feels like ships passing in the night, although we can see each other and even communicate we never meet. Enjoy all the experiences .
Thank you for the kind welcome and suggestions, I am available for all the advice I can get, so please do not hold back, as at this stage I am very keen and not sure where or how to start. The irony is that when I was 20 years old living in Dar es Salaam, people used to ask me to look after their homes while they were on holiday, so my life it seems has done a full 360 degree. It’s exciting !
Since moving to France have been living with family in Corsica and more recently in Ales in the Vard. I am currently on an extended visit to family in New Zealand and will be back mid May when I hope I will get some sits in Frane, Italy or Spain! Thank you for your welcome and interest
Thank you for the warm welcome and even more for the offer of help, as I must admit I am a bit overwhelmed at how to go about applying for advertised sits and those that advertise but do not have dates, in places I would really like to visit.
Do I use this forum to ask you questions or is there a private route as I don’t want to bore the other members with my simplistic questions, although Alex has been very helpful in the background ? Thank you once again for offer and welcome
Hello @Jeanav09 You are most welcome and you can ask any questions that you like on the forum as other members can help answer them as well. Using the spyglass to search previously discussed questions and topics is also another great tool.
You can also direct message me, any of the moderators or any member you would like to start a private conversation with. You can do this by clicking on the person’s user name and then a green message box will appear and you can direct message that way.
I will DM you now and you can see how it works and we can get started with helping you with those questions
Ok, here I am, not really sure how I got here, other using the reply button and put my log in details and here I am! I do have a question prompted by the dialogue re ‘how to turn down an applicant for a sit’, some of the sitters comments suggest that they put in quite the effort drafting application, is it not just simply putting in a request and then the profile speaks for you, what else does one have to do to be considered? Please let me know as I have not done it yet ??
Hello @Jeanav09 did you manage to find my DM to you? Here is also a link to help you get started using the forum:
Please feel free to continue to ask questions here or by direct message. I am sure that other community members will be able to provide you with answers also.
Hello Fellow New Sitter, Jean, Yes, I thought the exact same, that my Profile was a shining beacon for all Hosts, but no.
I have read over and over on the the TH Forum the need to let your Profile be in addition to your note. It is best to state direct, personal, and potentially heartwarming mentions in your responses to the Hosts about their animals, the situation, their needs and your qualities that fulfill these; whatever you can relate to, to invite connection with how their invitation is something that feels good and is a good fit for you.
So, your Profile is not enough. I did have that same sense when I began applying, after hours spent making my Profile. How could 12 photos and endless details about me not be enough? Now, I see…
It gets easy. If you look through the Forum, you’ll see this is the way it is recommended to Apply.
Also, there is a list that I receive via email, after I am declined, that offers suggestions on how best to Apply, including what I said above in my own words, across the world to you!
Thank you for your note to me, Jean. Here we go!
Aloha, Love, Claire
Hi Claire, in my stumbling around the forum and your profile I came across the video of you singing, wow you a very accomplished performer, you have so many strings to your bow and accomplishments I cannot see how you can be refused as a house sitting/caring candidate ? Upward and onward you go!
Do keep your amazing positive vibes going.
The other newbie. Jean
Hi @Jeanav09. Welcome to TrustedHousesitters!
You asked for advice.
Sources to read/search:
- TH Help/FAQ (https://support.trustedhousesitters.com/hc/en-gb)
- TH blog (Blog - Page 1 | TrustedHousesitters.com)
- TH forums
- Remember that you can search the forums just like you would google. Many, if not all, of the questions you may have were probably asked previously.
- There are also external/unofficial TH groups, like on Reddit.
Sources to ask:
- TH forums
- You told @Carla-Moderator that you didn’t want to “bore other members,” which is very considerate. However, if you have a question that isn’t answered already on the forums, then please ask it publicly! Filling in those gaps will help future members, too.
- TH Membership Services (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- et al.
There is a bit of a learning curve in digesting all that is TH. Just take it a step at a time! What’s that saying about a journey of a thousand miles?
You asked some specific questions. Remember you can search for those answers. I’ll also give my opinions below.
You said to @Samox24:
I’ve tagged (@) Samox because she might not have noticed your reply otherwise. I’m learning just to tag everyone by default. Perhaps Samox has been to some of the places you’ve mentioned. You never know …
You asked about:
If you see a listing without dates, you can favorite/heart the listing. This has a couple benefits:
- The PP (pet parent) is notified that you favorited their listing. So they may check out your profile. They may also remember that you favorited them when they are planning a sit later. A PP can even privately invite a sitter and not publish public dates.
- That said, popular listings may be favorited by hundreds (thousands?) of members.
- While the PP can initiate a TH message with any sitter, the reverse is not true. Sitters can message PPs only if a listing has dates (and shows less than 5 applicants). Though sitters can always message PPs that they’ve messaged before.
- When a favorited sit publishes dates, you should be sent an email or app notification, depending. I’m not versed in this, so search for more details.
@Claireisamazing made some great points about this. And you can search for more in the above resources. But it’s a bit nuanced:
- Suppose you favorite a sit. The PP sees that, so they check out your profile. So they have only your profile to go on. In that sense, you can and want your profile to speak for itself. A compelling profile might lead to the PP at least messaging you, which would open the door to further conversation.
- You cannot appeal to all PPs. Visualize your ideal PPs/sits and focus on those.
- Check out other sitters’ profiles. You’ll learn so much about different ways to express and represent yourself. You have literally 50,000+ unique, real examples.
- Applying to a sit: PPs want to feel that you will care for their home and pets. Some PPs may discern that from just a profile. However, both a home and pets are unique; some PPs want to see that you understand what’s unique in their sit. The application message can help here. It’s all about connection … and trust.
- There are some caveats to putting in too much effort on an application:
- You may not hear back. You may simply be declined, or ignored. There could be any number of reasons this happens, and it’s probably not personal. Just be prepared to roll with the punches, develop a thick skin, adopt a positive attitude, etc.
- Popular sits will run into the 5-app pause rule, which you can read much more about. You may see a sit you like, and start working on a detailed application, and then something happens and you find you can’t apply. I feel it’s easier to understand if it actually happens, so just keep that in the back of your mind that your first couple applications may be pure learning experiences.
- There are some caveats to putting in too much effort on an application:
Feedback on your sitter profile:
- Overall, I think it’s very good for a starter profile. You have 4 references, which is great! More is always better. However, what really seems to matter are reviews, which you can get only from TH sits. You may want to apply for whatever sits you can locally. If you can do some in New Zealand and then again when you get home, that will be really strong. The first sit is generally the hardest to get.
- Photos should be as good as you can make them; it’s as much unconscious bias as anything. You can google that. Take the time to plan good photos, take them, and post-process them. I’ve read that the best TH photos are of you with a pet/animal.
- Profile formatting is limited. But you should have a blank line between paragraphs. For example, in your intro, separate the paragraphs more.
Back to taking one step at a time. Here are some example goals, in increasing order:
- Create sitter profile (you did this)
- Find a sit you like and favorite it
- Create a saved search on the website. Make sure you get an email about it when a new listing happens.
- Ditto, but on the app and with notifications.
Apply to a sit.
- If you want to play with this a bit more, reply/DM me and I can use my PP account to do a test listing or something.
- Apply and get any response from the PP.
- Apply and have a conversation.
- Apply and have a video call.
Get/confirm a sit!
- Get a review.
Good luck, Jean! I feel that this may be the start of a wondrous journey for you!
I am so sorry, Carla. I can not figure it out. And forgot when I was told how.
How does one DM?
Hi @Claireisamazing I have attached a thread which also explains this but basically there are a couple of ways you can do this. You can click on the message here, like for instance if you click on my photo you will then see a green message box which you can then use to send a message. If a members profile is hidden or not linked you will not be able to use this method.
If not you can click on your photo where you will see a line of icons, you then need to click on the envelope icon twice and then you will be able to send a DM - direct message using create a ‘new’ message.
If you are still unsure please do not hesitate to ask.
It is very kind of you to offer this guidance, but I seriously do not have any of the things you suggest; no green message when clicking on photo, and your link is there. I click on photo and there is no line of icons. Hello Moderators, please HELP ME!
Hi @Claireisamazing here is a screen shot of what it would look like. This is me after clicking directly on your name. This box pops up and then I can click on the green “message” button.
Kelly-M ~ Thank you, but, I could totally handle it, if there was a green box. I swear there is no green box here. What is going on with my access to the green box, I wonder?
I’m going to DM you now and see if we can get this sorted out so that this thread can go back on topic.