When a potential sit has past sitters but no reviews

Since I am relatively new to THS, I am wondering if more experienced sitters can share what they think when they look at a potential sit, that has had several past sitters, but no one has left a review?

Also, has anyone ever requested a review and then the HO does not respond? This has not happened to me, luckily, but I was just wondering what others do- how much do you pursue it?

Thank you!

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I actually would like to piggy back onto SoloTraveler’s inquiry and ask how do you know if HO’s have had past sitters who haven’t left a review. I’m not seeing this when I look at sits. Thank you.

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I usually check if the owner has left the sitters a review. If they have and the sitters haven’t, I find it slightly alarming.

Bear in mind that a lot of “sits” in 2020 and 2021 might not have gone ahead and sometimes haven’t been deleted. That might be a reason for the no-review.

If owners don’t automatically leave a review, I send them a request one week after the sit and if necessary again two weeks later. That always did the trick for me :grinning:

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@SoloTraveler Could be a red flag, could be coincidence if there are several past sitters and no reviews. If it was a sit I was interested in, my spidey sense would kick into high gear and I would proceed with caution. You could apply and if you have the opportunity to speak with the HO, you could bring up the topic of past sitters and ask the HO why there were no reviews. If the past sitter is still active, you can click on their name and see if the HO left them a review.

We’ve never not had a HO leave us a review, fortunately. We always send a request a few days following the end of the sit if the HO has not already written a review.

@Susan You can see all past sitters on the app, whether they have left a review or not. On the website you only see those past sitters who have left a review. That’s why it’s good practice to get into the habit of checking both the website and app if there’s a sit of interest.

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Thank you! I’ll start that habit ASAP!

I take that as a huge red flag quite frankly. At one point I know that TH was going to not show previous sitters where they that had not left reviews (I do know it varies what you can see in regards to previous sitters, from phone to desktop to @Susan 's point) but I insisted they left this - as someone not saying anything, to me anyway, speaks volumes! I don’t know why some sitters don’t wish to leave ‘honest’ or ‘bad’ reviews but hey that’s their deal.

Obviously if the non reviewer was the last sitter they had they just might not have got around to doing it yet - or if they were MANY years ago, I’m not sure if the review bit was even part of the process - so I give them the benefit of my doubt - but non reviewers over the last 2-3 years = RED FLAG!!

Sometimes I actually message the HO’s and tell them that they would get more applications if the previous sitters had left them reviews - they appreciate the feedback and sometimes go out and remind those sitters and then all is then good, as they do leave them.

I know I don’t ever leave MY review of the sit - until I’ve received the HO’s review first. So it could be the case of a HO not leaving them a review first?

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I agree. The one I was looking at had ELEVEN sitters in the past six months and not one single review! It’s a single guy HO and all the sitters were single women which is a bit alarming. I will not be applying for this one!

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I think I have seen this sit too!

My wife was like err, no thanks! :rofl:

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Thanks @SoloTraveler for highlighting this issue. Just happened for a listing I was interested in, the listing seems nice, with a lot of pictures and descriptions etc. They had so far one past sitter looking after the house/pets who hasn’t released any review whilst the HO write them a lovely review. Honestly speaking, I wish the sitter had written at least a few words for this listing. It’s even worse than a bad review in my opinion.

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We definitely look at that when we’re in doubt about a sit. We would take special care to remember to write a review for a HO without any reviews, if we felt that we could recommend the sit.

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A Major red flag with 11 sitters and no reviews. Even though you are not applying, you may want want to send that listing to member services to have them look into what is going on there. They would have the ability to contact the sitters to see if they had bad experiences or if the sit was cancelled. You can actually click on the sitters’ names and see if the owner left reviews for them. That often sheds some light. If the sits were cancelled, THS can delete them. I have had a few owners who were missing one or two reviews and we discussed the situation prior to my acceptance. One of them had a bad experience with a sitter and was afraid to receive a bad review in retaliation, so neither party reviewed the other. I did accept that sit and it was lovely.

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PS: We also have a couple of sits without reviews since we did a few repeat sits through THS (didn’t see a reason to leave another review about the same HO, place and animals and neither did the HO). So I would only look at a big discrepancy (like 11 sits, 0 reviews).

HI @Timmy I would encourage you to ask every homeowner for a review, especially when it is a repeat sit. This is more reassuring for other homeowners, to see that you were invited back. It’s almost a way of guaranteeing that the first review was accurate and honest. It also increases the count of your reviews, and some homeowners base a lot on how many reviews you have. You can do a similar review saying it was a pleasure to be invited back and you enjoyed your stay yet again. The reviews need not be as long and detailed as the first.

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We used to think similarly about repeat reviews but rethought it and really saw the benefits. Not only for the reasons @Snowbird mentions, but also to ensure continuity. Something we now do is to explain to owners how it really benefits them as well to have continuity, and we’ve encouraged each other to think of something different that stood out on the repeat sit, or to focus on a skill set not mentioned before. It does take a bit of creative thinking sometimes, but I think it really does work in everyone’s favor.

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Yes @Vanessa-Admin , I agree. Also, I did one repeat sit where the owners had moved. At the second sit we were asked to maintain the pool, and just check in one set of visitors to their adjacent airbnb. When it came to review time, I asked them to specifically mention those two things, as they may be important to another homeowner. I didn’t tell them what to write, but merely explained why I’d like those points included. They appreciated that information too, as it helped them figure out what to write.

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If an owner does not leave a review that, to me, suggest that they were not very happy with their sitter and if the sitter has not left a review, ai would assume that its because they were not happy about the sit or they are waiting for the owner to post first which is the usual case. Either way, it seems the sit was not appreciared

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It’s a good point. I just noticed a local sit a few minutes ago which I have seen advertised numerous times and there is not a single review from past sitters which would raise a red flag to me.

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There are many potential reasons for no reviews (the main ones are already mentioned). I agree that 11 sits with no reviews of the HO raises questions.

In one case, one HO was dying (she told me) and the trip turned out to be her last (for son’s wedding). I was hardly going to bug them for a review. In another case, the sit ended in mid-March 2020, and I think we all had a lot more on our minds.

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Agree, a sit without a review is a red flag to me unless they are new members. Why take the risk with no reviews if the vibes are not good? If the owner describes themselves as “professional” and looking for a “competent” sitter or a “pet slave”. Well, hello, are we all not professional and competent and the use of the word “slave” is very offensive to certain groups?
I do not know why THS permit the use of this word, yet ban the use of the s.x word…

@Els How do you check to see if the owners have left reviews? I’m on a sit right now that had several red flags, including past sitters not leaving reviews. But I can’t tell if the HO left any reviews for them either. On the listing now, the “sitters & feedback” tab is completely missing. Maybe it goes away during current sits? I’ve never had reason to check during a sit before.

Good tip on review reminders - I’ll adopt that in the future!