As some of our members are experiencing, there is an uneven pattern of behaviour as international travel rebounds. After almost two years of being confined to home, travel has become the focus for many and as new owners discover TrustedHousesitters, the opportunities for sitters have increased very quickly causing a temporary imbalance.
Please be reassured that we are aware of this situation and our team is being both reactive and proactive in addressing this temporary situation. Maintaining a balanced ratio of sitters to sits is something we work on continuously, however for the moment this balancing act has been made a little more challenging by the global pandemic.
Contributing factors: Sitters who have stayed closer to home for domestic sits are now returning to international travel. For some there is still a level of uncertainty and to avoid last minute changes they are applying closer to start dates. Others are simply choosing to wait, although with all the amazing opportunities coming daily to the site, we’re sure they won’t be waiting too much longer!
We know that securing your pet’s new best friend is the number one priority. Once this is done pet parents can relax and focus on fully preparing for the vacation, trip away or family reunions.
To help with this situation @Angela-CommunityManager has pulled together 10 of her tried and tested tips:
Create a great listing- a picture says a thousand words and everyone today is used to seeing good quality imagery. Is your listing the very best it can be or might sitters pass you by? Here’s some help with how to create the perfect owner listing
Post early - as soon as you know your dates, add them to your listing.
Multiple dates - do you have more than one set of dates? If they are far apart, try posting one set at a time.
Be reactive - answer sitter messages as soon as they arrive in your inbox and reply to all messages you receive. You never know, you may want to go back to a sitter. Download the app so you can view messages and answer on the go.
Be proactive - reach out and invite sitters. Standard and Premium members can view who has previously favourited their listing - this could be a great place to start.
Don’t pass on new sitter members. - when I first started, almost 200 sits ago, my commitment and dedication to pets and homes was the same then as it is now, but we all have to start somewhere. New sitters are likely to be flexible and local, and will have an ID check and (if they are US-registered) a background check.
Here are some tips on how to choose the right first-time sitter:
- Read their profile: have they created a well-crafted profile, with good photographs giving you a sense of who they are and why they want to be sitters?
- Do they have external references?
- Read their application message: is it personalised, professional and friendly?
- Are they happy to jump on a call/video chat/meet you in person?
Boost your listing - Standard & Premium members can take advantage of this feature.
If you live where a car is essential and can offer the use of a vehicle to qualified drivers then this is a huge benefit for sitters coming from a distance or without transport. Those without transport stay close to cities or where they won’t need a car… making one available could entice them away from the city. Always check with your own insurance provider regarding adding drivers and what this might involve.
Remember that sitters apply to more than one listing at a time and that they have to plan their travels. You are only managing your vacation, sitters are managing many sits and planning way ahead and so timely response and decision making is essential, especially at the moment and until the situation starts to become balanced again.
Last but not least… Don’t panic! We are here to help. If you find you are struggling, contact our Membership Services team who will be happy to do an audit on your listing and make recommendations, or (if your sit date is starting within the next 7 days), post your listing in our Last Minute Sits category here in the forum.
Are there any tips that we have forgotten to include? Please add in the comments.
Let’s help one another - that’s what community is all about.