My name is Diana and am new to THS. Just wondering what is worst scenarios for some if you care to share and what would advice would you give to a newbie…
Hi and welcome!
THS can open a world of new experiences, relationships and adventures to you. By and large these will be positive. To avoid pitfalls, it comes down to being prepared. Read all the literature THS provides to you as a new member. Read the many topics here on the forum.
I assume you have joined as a sitter? It’s so much fun! Develop a list of questions to ask a prospective homeowner (HO). Read reviews and feedback, evaluate photos that are posted and trust your gut. At the beginning it is nice if you start local and meet the HO and pet(s) ahead of time to decide if you are right for each other. Here on the forum, use the spy glass at the top to search for topics you are interested in. Topics that may be of interest based on your original question are
But peruse as much of the forum as you can. You will read about others’ good and not so good experiences, how different situations were handled, you’ll read advice, criticism … the gamut.
Make a list of Your worst case scenarios and what would that mean to you.
My worst turned out to be something I handled, quite well.
My best, never ending surprises, joy, excitement.
Just remember @keepitsimple333 and amaze yourself.
Hi there, thank you so much for the feedback it’s most helpful. I’m so excited for this new endeavor. I love meeting new people and their fur babies. I have lots of homework lol.
Good way to address this because everyone’s reaction is different as well as each worst is different. Thank you for the reply!
Yes and yours will be different too. I didn’t prepare anything or read anything. I just went and the world unfolded.
Thank you so much for your reply.
We’ve been sitters for six years now with over 30 house sits and to be honest we’ve never had a bad experience. I consider us very lucky as I’ve read about some bad experiences in this forum. We’re very open minded and easygoing people which I think you have to be as you don’t know what you’re going to be faced with in each house sit. Some sits you apply on may not be the ideal home or up to the standards you may have but the location may be much better than you expected and you may find yourself with the most lovable pets you’ve ever dreamed to take care of. We always look on the bright side of each house sit and I think being adaptable will certainly help you enjoy your experiences.
We’ve had a couple of completely untrained and hyper active dogs, so we we had to clean the poo/vomit etc. in the house every day and run after them so they don’t completely demolish the house, but even they were lovely dogs and perhaps we even bonded more with them than with some of the other more well behaved ones. Most sits aren’t that challenging, though. Perhaps our biggest complaints would be that some places were a bit less tidy and more cluttered than we would have liked, but we understand that everybody has different standards. In some cases we understand that it would be a lot of work to keep everything clean all of the time (especially with several dogs that are allowed to the garden). It’s best not to be too critical or to expect too much, so you’ll not get disappointed, but sometimes pleasantly surprised. Once we accepted a last-minute sit from Facebook: we didn’t know the people nor the cat nor had seen any pictures. It turned out to be a stunning flat with large windows and views of the lake and mountains, the cat was very easy going and super cuddly.
What a good question!
I have been house-sitting for 11 years and just muddled through at the beginning. I would advise not to worry, be flexible and learn as you go along.
A thought that I have had for quite a while is that, as @Globetrotter states, there are some bad experiences along the way. Membership Services have helped some of these cases but we never get to know the results.
@Angela-HeadOfCommunity , I know other members have asked for success stories and it would be great for MS to sell themselves and let us know how they have helped members who have experienced worrying sits.
Thank you for the feedback, a lot of good tips for sure.
My worst scenario would be vermin in the house. Rats especially. How would I deal with it? Lock the door and get an exterminator to deal with them then charge the homeowner.
I have never had to deal with anything that extreme yet. The worst so far would be a dirty fridge or shower. Went out and bought cleaning items (yes, there were none in the house) and cleaned for the first day. Everything good after that.
Relax, go with the flow. Research, communication and gut instinct are your friends.
I’ve completed 200 sits across 5 continents with many repeat sits and I’ve welcomed many sitters from across the world to my home and while there have been a couple of challenges the vast majority have been excellent and I’m still enjoying my pet and house sitting lifestyle and just returned from a two week kitty sits, my seventh time with this lovely family, first time with their new kitten though …
To answer @Itchyfeet we never discuss an individual member’s situation with other members, publicly or privately but what I can say is that if and when the need arises Membership Services manages each situation on a one to one basis, supporting everyone involved.
Thank you again Diana and I hope you will enjoy exploring the forum and connecting with other members … new and experienced.
Thanks Annette for the helpful feedback.
Yes, hyperactive dogs would be draining for sure lol. It is exciting either way, take the good with the bad. Thanks for responding.
Good communication and planning for me would be the key to deal with any possible worst case scenarios. I have only ever done HS, if it doesn’t feel right, don’t commit. I prefer an easy going laid back kind of housesit than a smart place with lots of rules and regs. Then enjoy!
2 posts were split to a new topic: What’s the longest housesit you’ve done?
Hi there everyone so just an update on my first housesit…Didn’t see this coming as it’s not worst scenario but what did I learn? Take your cell phone with you at all times, make sure you leave another exit/entrance unlocked so you can get back in if pup jumps up and latches patio door shut on you while you are out in the cold with the other little dog. Dress for the occasion. Be nice to your neighbor because they are a life savor.
A lot of HOs have a hidden key somewhere outside for such mishaps. It also happened to us once that we shut the door with the key still stuck on the inside. We had a second key with us but this door didn’t open if there was a key stuck on the other side! We were lucky that we could push out the key in the keyhole with our other key (not as easy as it sounds, unless you already know how to do it).
I arrived on a recent sit with no handover at their request. The issue was that one of the cats I was looking after unfortunately wasn’t very well. The HO did advise such presit. The cat needed tablets administered at a certain time. Unfortunately I couldn’t tell 2 sibling cats apart so contacted the home owner for advise without response, then the emergency contact, again without response. I got advise from THS vet line to just wait. Finally the HO got back to me many anxious hours later on how I knew which cat was which.
Next time I’ll know a handover is vitally important for pets needing vital medicines,