Sitter AVAILABILITY Calendar - and how to edit/add/delete dates and location

(Instructions in the next post below)

I think it is important to distinguish between “full time/Nomad” sitters and “occasional” sitters, regarding the requirements of the Calendar.

The majority of sitters, in my opinion, will fall under the “occasional” category.

Full-time employees working in an office, supermarket, trade, teachers etc., with only a few weeks annual leave/holidays to sit, or families who can only travel during school holidays, so for them it is easier to add dates when they will be available to sit - possibly only once or twice a year, rather than has been suggested by some that the calendar is updated and unavailable dates are entered - Default Available on all dates

“occasional” members with dates on their calendar marked in green will most likely NOT want to sit in their local area, as they will be using THS to travel, so if an owner contacts them to ask if they are available to sit locally, the answer will mostly be no – although some may use this opportunity to get reviews.

The default calendar is “unavailable” to sit - White (maybe if the default was grey, would that make a difference - is it the colour or lack of colour that makes it confusing?)

If you think about it, there is no difference between adding dates you are available to sit or unavailable to sit - you still need to enter a start date and an end date so it should not take any longer.

THS will go with the majority, and I think it is quite a big majority - “occasional”

The Forum sitter members tend to be more “full time/nomad” sitters, so their thoughts sometimes look like the majority opinion, but that is not the case when the total membership is looked at.

Improvements in the calendar are needed, but any changes need to reflect the needs of everyone.

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In addition to the above, sitters can change their location, so if they know where they would like to sit, that, to me would make a lot of sense in the current climate where there appears to be a shortage of sitters vs owners.

Then owners would see who was actually potentially available in their area.

A short note on a profile - we are from XXXX but are looking to sit in yyyy, maybe to visit relatives, a theme park, a world heritage site( and look after pets!) - would also help.

It may take a bit longer to manage, changes to settings etc, but not more than a few minutes, and if you are unsure how to do this, ask on the Forum! (or check below)

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To update your AVAILABILITY Calendar on the main THS website, go to your dashboard, and scroll down to your picture, beside your picture in green writing “manage availability” click on this.

You can easily edit or remove existing dates, and add as many new dates as you want. Enter start date (From) on the drop-down calendar, enter end (to) date click add.
These dates will show as green on your calendar, which you can view, and owners will see, at the bottom of your live profile online.

To remove or change a date, click in the white box next to the date and you will be given the option to change the dates (YES/NO) or delete the dates completely (x remove date, bottom right-hand corner)

Not my calendar but this is an example of a sitters calendar with all 3 scenarios.
Green - available to sit, White - unavailable, / (date crossed out) a confirmed THS sit.

To change your location, click on “Edit Profile” in your dashboard and go to the second option “about you”

Scroll down until just after your last picture and the box shows your “current” location

This can be changed, click on the x to remove the current setting, and once you start to type, options will automatically be offered - you can specify a country, city, area in a city, region, or town/village.
The only limitations are those not in the “map” database, some places may be missing.

Then scroll to the bottom and remember to save changes, then finally “save and go to dashboard” - so save twice!

To view exactly what an owner will see on the THS website, click on the “Preview” word within your profile picture on your dashboard page.

(I don’t really use the app, so if anyone fancies doing a “help” for that, please do)

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Very useful Peter, thank you! I can’t help but think that you should be a paid member of staff as this is what should have come from staff!

This is the only calendar I know of where default=unavailable. To me personally, it doesn´t make any sense. I am used to calendars where the default (white) means available and crossed off days (cross) mean unavailable. I haven´t seen the THS calendar yet, but am pretty sure I´d find the presentation of available/unavailable as well colors used very confusing

p.s. why is it that I cannot see my calendar? Because I haven´t added any àvailable` days? There should be some data in it. As I understand the days I am booked are automatically added to the calendar hence I should be able to see it.

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If you preview your profile from your dashboard, (click on the word in your picture) your calendar is at the bottom of your listing. Yours will be all white unless you have any confirmed sits in the future, which will be crossed out ( /. )

As I have said above, the calendar is there for the majority of sitters, who will be mostly unavailable - working, not able to travel, so it is based around that.

@Petermac … found it, thanks
The calendar as it is (without me doing any edits) looks good to me
p.s. (why hide the calendar behind the profile preview? :)) I´d appreciate a link tagged “Calendar” next to Manage Availability

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It’s not so much “hidden”, I think its main use is for an owner to see your availability, so that’s where it is shown - on your profile, but the THS team do read these comments, so you never know…

Hello everyone, I’m new to THS and am looking for a house sitter. The calendar is driving me mad! I put in the dates I need a housesitter for, get loads of people coming up, so my spirits are lifted, but then I go each through them, to find that most do not have any green available dates. Do the filters not work? What can I be doing wrong? Help please! Any shortcuts or tips very gratefully received.

Hi @bee and welcome to the community. Sorry, however, you are experiencing frustration while using the calendar. There’s been a lot of discussion about this over the past few days, with several posts, so I’ve moved your question here. @Petermac has a very good understanding of how this works and provides a great explanation from several perspectives which might provide some insight for you. Most sits are filled by sitters reaching out to home owner listings, so hopefully you’ll get a good mix of inward applications, and some you reach out to.

Don’t forget to update your forum profile and add your listing there too to get some extra exposure. All the best, Vanessa

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This is such a helpful post, thank you @Petermac !
The location especially - I live in Sydney but want to house sit in New York in February. I put it in my intro summary because that’s the only place I could think of!
I didn’t think I could change my location (I guess because of different security checks performed) but will look at that. I’ve already had one local reach out to me but I am not available for any kind of sits until I go on holiday.
I had asked the question as to how HOs would find me if they were looking, and all I really got was that I had to reach out to them.
:slightly_smiling_face::clap:

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Hi @Von I have had a look at your listing and I see you have changed your location and your calendar shows you are available to sit in February next year, so all good!
So glad my post has had a positive result already :tada: :tada: :tada:

I hope you get lucky soon with your sit in New York.
Peter.

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Thanks, @Petermac very good tutorial and you clearly identified the issue. A color change and the adding that under the legend will greatly improve things and it will be relatively easy to implement. It would be really nice if the calendar looked like this

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Thanks for that, I’m sure the THS management read these threads, so maybe…

@Vanessa-Admin :wink:

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Hi @bee and welcome to the Forum.
This thread is mainly about sitters and the use of the Calendar and as a sitter, I am not exactly sure how the search works (or doesn’t) for owners, however, I hope that some other Forum member-owners may be able to help, for instance @Düsenzofe

Unfortunately, in my opinion, anyway, there are a high number of sitters who don’t use the calendar, don’t understand how to, or don’t even know it exists - part of the reason for my post - to try to increase the usage of the calendar and explain how easy it is to use, which should help everyone eventually.

There are just over 4000 members on the Forum at this date, which is only a small percentage of the total membership of THS - 5% is a rough guess - but Forum numbers are growing daily, so hopefully, the message will get out there.

The other point to take from the above post is that even if you find a local sitter listed as Available (green) they may not be looking to sit locally, and that is why I have also included the change location details in this post.
I hope you find someone soon, Peter.

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Hi @Petermac @BunnyCat … thank you both and yes the team do look at the forum and these threads constantly they value the incredible amount of member feedback and insights after all you are the ones who use the product and are the very best to feedback the user experiences.

We have a bi weekly Member Feedback meeting, it lasts an hour and members from across the departments are present including Senior Management. A forum update is included and next week we are presenting this very topic with all of your suggestions about the Availability Calendar and so not only will they see it on their daily forum visits, it will be a point of presentation and discussion.

We will feedback any relevant information … thank you

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Thank you @Petermac for tagging me. I just tried to search for available sitters and, as @bee already said, it would certainly drive me crazy, because each profile I clicked, the dates didn’t necessarily show availability for the timeframe I was looking for. So it seems useless to me and very time consuming, especially when sitters don’t update it.
Hopefully the product team will change something about this as they will be looking into this as @Angela-CommunityManager said.
At the moment, the best chance to find a sitter is to create a very good and eye catching listing and to use the boost function.

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We are currently listed in a city where we will no longer be living. In fact we will be exploring a whole country for around 6 months. We have reached that sweet place where we seem to receive an invitation to sit at least once a week and lately every day. How do we let folks know where we are? Can we be nomadic with a region instead of a city?

Hi @JCKC. You can change your location to reflect where you would like to sit. See the instructions in my post from the other day, below the instructions on how to use the calendar, Peter.

Sitter AVAILABILITY Calendar - and how to edit/add/delete dates and location

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Thank you. I finally figured it out and it reflects our new location. But reading your answer led me to others. The forum is great.

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