Unread and declined applications for sits

I’ve asked this question of sitters also. I’ve just had two of my applications for sits declined without the houseowners having read my applications (shown as ‘unread’) which I always take time over and personalise. This is very disappointing and, I think, quite discourteous. I appreciate that things can change at the moment but it would be nice to know that my applications were going to be read and a reason given for declining them.
Is any houseowner who has done this willing to explain why?


I always answer to each applicant, giving my reasons(they don’t speak french, have no references yet and I’m anxious, considering which happened to my dogs in the past, they want to come with kids, it sounds like a very long way to come for a short one week sit from Thailand -I’m afraid they might cancel later on if they find a longer sit in my country…)
I stop my ad after I made a choice (less than a week) or put in on pause if too many people have answered in one day (which happens when you suggest 3 weeks in Provence during summer in a garden + pool…)


I’ve found that if I don’t “pause” applications the number can get overwhelming. I do try to read each application and give a response tho. But I try and pause them quickly.


As a sitter (albeit a novice) I appreciate that approach, thank you!


Is there any chance that it’s the sort of unread that you see on WhatsApp, or if the recipient has turned off the function to notify as read in their mail client? The owner has seen it but not opened it properly? I’m not an owner, I’m just hypothesising.
Pretty rude not to respond, even if it’s a stock reply though.

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Yes, most people do read the ads but I’ve recently had a few (and in the past) that haven’t been read. I doubt this is like WhatsApp but may be wrong. Also lost of ads are showing ‘ sitter no longer required) before having a reply but, as you say, that could be because the owner has paused it and is reading all the applications thus far. I did get a very nice groups message yesterday from an owner addressed to all applicants explaining she was pausing the ad while she read the applications and would get back to us all at the end of next week. Now why can’t others do that?


It’s the least that owners should do once they accept an application isn’t it? Common courtesy really. We have had a few unread messages where the sit is then unsuccessful.


Good question…


Hello Smiley
I recall as a home owner before I began sitting myself, that I was so overwhelmed with applications that I didn’t know where to start. While I created a standard ‘thank you, I have found a sitter’ response and sent it to all who applied, I recognise that some home owners are either overwhelmed, too busy/ distracted or not organised about responding. The best advice I have for sitters is to not take it personally and continue to apply for the sits that are most important to you. Also, have a master response that gives a real sense of who you are and that you are available for the sit. I cut and paste a solid standard application response and then modify it slightly to acknowledge what’s relevant for that sit. Very rare that I don’t get acknowledgement as I think it helps me to stand out. Keep at it and don’t lose heart! Warmly, Lisa


When we get rejected for a sit.
We always thank them for replying
Its the ones who don’t that we dislike
We take note of it and don’t reapply for any of their sits.


I’ve noticed over the past few days that the available sits in England have increased hugely in number, so this morning I spent two hours composing applications for two separate house sits. For one of them, the HO had only between 8 and 11 applications and they have apparently decided on their sitter leading to me receiving a reject message from THS. That’s fine but with only a max of 11 applications, can’t HO spend a few more minutes sending me a message to let me know with a little more of a personal approach?


We had the “unread and declined” scenario recently and although we initially felt hurt on reflection, if the people are that uncourteous, we might have “dodged a bullet”.


As a homeowner who got LOADS of responses, I can share that I read through many many messages. As someone with chronic fatigue who also runs a business, I just don’t have the energy to respond to everyone. I had no idea that it tells people that they’ve been declined. I think folks need to stop taking things so personal!


I’m with you there. As many people have pointed out many times it takes all sorts to make the world go round and THS is a reflection on this. Yes, it is not nice to receive a personalised rejection or not get an application worthy of Shakespeare read before rejection but get over it. It’s not a life or death problem. There are rude people everywhere, in every country, in every walk of life. Everyday we come across a discourteous person. They let go of the door in your face, they jump the queue, they run red lights. Some don’t even realise what they are doing is wrong in polite society.
I am sure there are lots of reasons pet owners do not read all applications or give a personal rejection to every applicant, many have been listed already. Yes, it’s annoying but why not just accept its the way of the world and move on. I took great pleasure in rejecting an offer after three months of waiting and pointed out that during that time a had applied and been accepted for a sit within three days. I also added I am sorry I couldn’t do it but time and tide waits for no man (or woman).
I never wait for an answer. I apply for multiple sits within the time frame and accept the first after a telephone call and/or video talk. Then I contact the rest of the sits and withdraw my offer stating the reason. I always want to add if they had made up their mind quicker I could have been sitting for them but never do.
So, in summary stop whinging and let’s concentrate on all things positive and let these rude inconsiderate people stress two days before they are going away because all their applicants have withdrawn and they don’t have anyone to look after their pets.

Now, where’s that lead, time for another walk along the beach. Life is good.


Hi @homebody welcome to our community forum and for joining in the conversation it’s so enlightening to hear about personal experiences and to get the different perspectives from both sides of our community network and as @ElsieDownie so eloquently puts it

it’s also what make our community, inspirational, caring and uniquely authentic.

Enjoy the conversations and connecting with members from around the world and we look forward to sharing in your THS journey.

Angela & The Team

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Hear, hear ElsieDownie.

I don’t generally have a problem getting sits as have been doing the same as you and have built up lots of reviews now.

Quick related question.

We applied for a sit 10 days ago, it ended up having over 40 applications although we were in the first three to apply, and I know they read our application. Every day I’ve been checking to see if they’ve chosen someone yet.

Today, I noticed it says “Currently no sitter needed”. Does this mean they cancelled their sit or that they’ve filled their sit or what? And regardless, wouldn’t we automatically get a “declined” message?

Very likely they have withdrawn the house sit if you’ve not had a ‘decline’ auto message.

Is that for certain? There is definitely an auto-decline?