I am just in the process of completing housesit #12 with my wife and youngest daughter (15), and I cannot help but think about ways that people might be able to find a family like ours for potential long-term sits.
Unless I am missing something, homeowners can currently search for potential housesitters via:
- Geographic Location
- Dates (Available)
- Preferred Pets to Sit
We will occasionally be approached by homeowners, asking if we will sit their home and pets in Minnesota (USA), since we live in Minnesota. But our purpose for housesitting is to explore other regions, not the region we already live. So searching for us via geography isn’t useful.
Dates Available is also a tough one to search for us, since we are essentially available anytime (my wife works remotely, as do I, while our daughter attends school online).
Preferred Pets? We might say cats, but are happy to watch just about anything except reptiles. And verifications? We have very strong reviews, and have other verifications. But all of that said? If someone were to be thinking about finding a sitter for a long-term sit, almost anywhere in North America, almost any set of dates, how would they ever know we exist? We try and watch available listings, every day. But most longer-term sits have 5-10+ applicants before we even knew the sit was available.
So, how do you (other sitters) manage to become “known” as an individual/couple/family who would be great to care for someone’s home and pets? Like I mentioned, we’ve completed 12 housesits through the site, and have always received great reviews! But It seems next to impossible to “stand out from the noise.” And when there are sits that are open to having kids (our daughter is 15, but many homeowners automatically rule out kids on sits, regardless of whether they are infants or 17), they are snapped-up quicker than we can type an application.
Ideas would be appreciated. Thanks!