I’m wondering if there are different feelings about what constitutes rejection. The messages I sent were before any sitter had been confirmed.

One of the sitters, for example, wasn’t available for a video call for several days, and I didn’t want to leave other great people hanging. I didn’t feel like it was a rejection so much as letting them know that they had been shortlisted. (Vs the sitters who I didn’t feel were a good match.)

In my case, would you have just not notified the other sitters at all until somebody was confirmed, rather than sending a status update, like I did?

Of course, I want to be as courteous as possible.

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I think there are a zillion scenarios here. There are polite HOs and polite sitters and then there are the reverse. You have to trust your gut @GardenCat on whether you like their style of comms as you start to interact and if you don’t then keep looking. Although if I understand it correctly and your issue is that when you rejected them with just the decline button, that some of them didn’t say “thanks anyway” then that’s odd you think they would. If you’d rejected them and said “don’t think we need you this time but can I keep you in mind for the future” or similar, then it would have left a different feeling and you’d have offered the personalised message that you’re seeking on the other side of the application. Whatever feels right. Clear, respectful and timely comms is everything in this house sitting life for us :raised_hands:t3:

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Oh, no! I did NOT reject them with the button. I didn’t even reject them at all IMO!

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Oh! :joy: Well then back to plan A @GardenCat - choose the ones you like and find some more fab ones if not #trustyourgut


I think your status report is very courteous, and I think it’s smart to lean towards sitters whose communication style is most comfortable for you! After all, you’ll be communicating a lot with these sitters before and during the sit!

When HO’s are short with me, either in turning me down, or with their status updates, and then someone cancels on them and they come back around to me, I do the same as you… I base my decision on whether to go forward with them or not partly on their communication style. The sitter - HO relationship is quite intimate, and good communication (in whatever style works for a person) goes a long way towards making the sit a great and smooth experience!

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My husband and I get picked for pretty much every sit to which we apply, and from what I can tell, I think we are often the only people being considered. We have over 60 reviews at this point, and a profile that has received a lot of positive feedback from HOs, so I think we are pretty strong candidates no matter the listing.

But there are times when the HO was talking to other people in addition to us–usually just one other applicant–and I’m fine with that. I understand some people feel more confident talking to more than one sitter that seems really good and feeling like they made an actual choice. I don’t take it personally.

But if a HO didn’t like my application enough to consider me for that ‘first round’ of chats (which is what your situation seems more like), I probably wouldn’t be interested in doing the sit. And this isn’t because of some bruised ego, but because I feel very strongly about this process going as smoothly and easily as possible. In these cases, I believe it isn’t the best match and best to let it go and focus my attention elsewhere.
The only exception to this would be if I knew the HO arranged to talk with the ‘first choice’ sitter before they saw my application. That has happened a couple of times, and in that situation I would be fine with them getting in touch if the first person didn’t work out. If that is the case with any of your listings, it would be good to say that because that is really different than telling people ‘you’re not my first choice but would consider you if she doesn’t work out.’

And if the latter is what you are saying, that isn’t wrong or bad, but there are probably not a lot of sitters that feel comfortable taking a sit knowing they weren’t the first choice.

I would probably reply but wouldn’t say too much, and while a shorter message may be indicative of an ‘attitude’ of some kind, it may mean nothing more than there really isn’t much to say about the situation.

I definitely think you can pick up on people’s energy in written communication, but such communication can be tricky. So sometimes it is possible we may be making very inaccurate assumptions about them. But if people are responding in a way that gives you reservations, just stick with the people where you are clearly getting the good vibes.


I have no problem with that. I have taken at least one sit when their first choice cancelled and they asked me later on if I was still available. That turned out to be very good.

Likewise, I applied late for a sit and a HO said:

“Hello Maggie, we are “in talks” with one caregiver but if she opts out, we’d love to have you.”

Then: “Hi Maggie- the other sitter picked another gig based on dates so we’d love to have you if you are still free!”

That led to one of my early THS sits. I had a great visit and they said they’d want me back.

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Absolutely. This was a case where I was already in talks with another sitter, or at least had a video talk scheduled. I don’t schedule more than one zoom talk for the same sit, and, usually, if the call goes well, we verbally confirm the sit at the end of the talk and confirm it on the site immediately after.

Right. And if I have say, three, very good applications, it’s often a matter of choosing the first one that came in, or some other arbitrary-seeming reason to reach out to one and not the other.

Already having been in talks with someone you like, and letting later applicants know you may have found someone , but will be in touch if that doesn’t work out, is a very different situation , and I think it is good you let people know they may be in the running. Any outright rude response to that would seem strange. I think the gut response you are getting from various people is probably a pretty spot on way to evaluate who to get back in touch with.


Yes, exactly. And, to be fair, I have not gotten outright rude responses to those messages. Sometimes I’ve gotten no response, and sometimes I’ve gotten those, well, abrupt responses (though not rude, per se.) It’s the responses that at least say “thanks for letting me know” or “yes, I’d love to be considered if that doesn’t work out” that make me feel good about the sitter’s communication style and positive attitude.

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If a home owner writes me a nice rejection letter(frequently because I have applied after they have been in contact with others) I always respond back thanking them for letting me know and wishing them a lovely time away. I have then sometimes had owners get back to me, asking if they can keep my details and contact me if they have any future sits. A few times I have then been contacted direct, for other sits that have become available.

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I try to line up videos w/ anyone who sounds great for this very reason. Everyone is looking for best opportunity/fit.

I’m a sitter, I would have messaged back a nice, polite, friendly shorter message. It’s nice to be nice.

But personally, I would focus on fresh applicants anyway, as I have no interest in being someones second choice or backup plan, so I wouldn’t be then interested. No matter how perfect your ad initially looked, it wouldn’t look half as appealing to me if I got turned down in the first place.

Interesting. I only line up one sitter for a call at once, and if we both seem interested & compatible sit-wise, I’ll say at the end of the call “I’d love to have you if you’re still interested.” and if they are, I’ll send a confirmation as soon as we’re off the call. If I were going away for a few months or more, maybe I would line up several calls as well.

I get it. Everyone is different in what feels to us like a rejection, vs. a happy opportunity.