Video calling people

Hello, I am new to Trustedhousesitters. I have several people interested in housesitting for my dates but I don’t know what to do next. I would like to video chat with some of them is it possible to do this please?

Hello and welcome to Trusted Housesitters. Great to hear you had loads of interest for your sit.

I would strongly suggest you do a video call with potential sitters. It’s a great way to ask questions and see if both parties are a good match.

There isn’t a way of doing the call via the website or app, most people exchange contact details via Whatsapp, Zoom or Skype.

Hope you’ll find the perfect sitter for your pets and home!

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@Seasidey welcome to the forum. I agree with @Els. I have done many sits for THS and can’t remember ever agreeing to a sit without first doing a video call. It’s a time to ask questions, but also get a general sense of whether it’s a good fit for everyone. My only exception to that is when I’m doing return sits, for someone I’ve sat for before.

I think many homeowners do a video call with their first choice only. If that’s not the case, it’s courtesy to say that. I have been told, for example, that they have another call with someone tomorrow and will decide after that. That open communication, with a timeline, is appreciated. Otherwise, I think most sitters would think they are currently the first choice.

Don’t feel pressured to give an answer to the sitter during that call. It’s OK to allow everyone some time to go and think about things, especially if a couple first wants to discuss it and make sure they agree. Again, just be courteous and give a timeframe of when you - either sitter or homowner - will make a definite decision.

Communication and consideration are key in the selection process.

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Thank you! So I have messaged one of the interested people and they have not responded. Do I have to press ‘accept’ before I can receive a response? I really appreciate your response as the website isn’t that intuitive!

Thank you! I am finding the website difficult to follow!

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The messaging system on your dashboard is similar to an email system. The sitter will receive any message you’ve sent by getting a notification in their inbox on THS and their email address on file - provided they have their account set to receive emails, which should be a given, if they have applied for a sit.

If you look at your inbox, at the bottom right corner of your message to them, see if they’ve opened your message/email,

Screen Shot 2022-01-30 at 6.54.55 AM
(unread will be greyed out).

If it’s unread, how long you wait depends on your preferences, and in part how soon your sit is and how quickly you want to get things organized. We all have different tolerance levels for reply times, so I’ll leave that for you to decide.

I’m not a homeowner here, but I think the ‘accept’ is only once you’ve made a definite selection. I can’t see a homeowner’s options so better that you get clarification from someone else on that point.

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Hi @Seasidey I’m sorry that you are struggling with the website, sometimes new members do find it a little confusing, you are not alone as there are a numb er of moving parts all of which are new and unfamiliar.

Your listing is great, Doris is adorable and I see you’ve had lots of applications. I’ve contacted our helpful Membership Services and one of the team is going to connect and help walk you through the process.

Please check your emails as they will message you directly.

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As a sitter with THS for seven years and over 30 successful house sits and great reviews, I just did my very first video chat with a homeowner. I personally don’t like video chats - I much prefer an old fashioned phone call. I came this far without having to do a video chat but I know a lot of homeowners expect it so if it means getting a sit, I’ll do it. I did end up getting this sit!

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Hi, @Seasidey. So glad you are part of THS! We are on the HO side of things, and have always done a video call with applicants.

We have only been part of THS since 2019, and we have never met our sitters in person. The video part has been great because we have been able to take our potential sitters on a virtual walking tour of spaces. This was particularly helpful when we had a family with five children wanting to stay at our house so they could visualize where they would be living and playing, indoors and out. It also settled our concerns about having a seven-person family in our house.

As @Els suggested, Skpye, Zoom, Whatsapp are great platforms. We try to use whichever platform works best for our potential housesitters. I agree as well with @Snowbird–the video call is an interview, and all parties need to keep the line of communication open. We are always upfront when we have several folks we are meeting, and set a time when we will let folks know our decision (and hope we are also a match for the sitter).

@Seasidey I think your final concern was about not hearing back from a candidate. You do NOT have to select “accept” in order to hear back from interested sitters. They get a message alert, and responding to you is on them.

It is hard to have expectations about response times. and @Snowbird had great advice. Your wait time will depend on your timeline and how much you think that sitter is a good/solid/best match. Personally, I frequently am in places for extended times where WiFi is really limited or have work projects where I am focused just on work and not on other opportunities. We try to keep that in mind when selecting housesitters, and know that if our timelines don’t align, there likely will be another opportunity to reach out and make a match for future trips.

Good luck!

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Hi @ThreeLittleBirds thank you for your excellent feedback it is so important to get perspectives from all of our members, owners and sitters.

Each sit is a different experience and when we share our experiences it is an opportunity to learn and perhaps do things slightly differently but to the end that we discover what works for everyone involved, especially our pets who rely on us to make the right choices for them.

I’ve had a look at your listing, you home is lovely, your kitties are adorable and previous sitters are overwhelmingly appreciative of the effort you go to to make their stay the best it can be.

“Our house-sit experience for @ThreeLittleBirds and her family was an absolute joy! We had the best possible experience and we thoroughly recommend a house sit for @ThreeLittleBirds We very much hope to return one day!”

Thank you …

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Hello @Seasidey
We have been sitters for a couple of years and always request a video call (unless it’s a repeat sit) as we feel that we need to be sure the sit is a good fit for us & vice versa. A lot of our sits have been for HO new to the site & the video ensures plenty of opportunity for both parties to ask questions. We are conscious that it can be scary asking complete strangers to look after your beloved pets & your home, so feel the call can enable you to have confidence in your sitter choice.

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Welcome back to the forum @mebarn it’s been a while, we hope you have been keeping well.

Thank you, that’s really helpful!

Thank you for your very helpful response!

Thank you, everyone’s advice has been very helpful!

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Thank you, all responses have been very helpful!

Hello. I am a solo sitter now for some years. I use both a video chat and just a regular call. And if possible for me and the owner asks for it I pay a visit.

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Hi
This question is to home owners.
What do you look for in a sitter & what questions do you expect or like the potential sitter to ask during a video call?
I seem to get brain freeze when speaking on a video call.
Any advice welcome please

As a single lady sitter I find it difficult when it’s a couple as everyone wants to speak at once .not sure what’s the answer to this. I’m more relaxed without the video maybe I’m just old fashioned.

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As a sitter, I also dislike video calls. I’ve only had to do one so far which went well but much prefer an old fashioned phone call. I feel like I’m being interviewed for a job on a video call.

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