Would it be considered “invasive" to ask this?

It seems like this issue is easily addressed in a listing profile, something along the lines of: “Once selected we would like the following information shared {your list} in order to {your reasons}.” Sitters that are happy to share will not be put off or surprised and those that are unwilling or uncomfortable doing so can simply move on to the next listing. As with so many other aspects of coordinating a sit, it’s largely about clear communications and expectations… that’s my take anyway.


I agree, it seems pretty easy for HOs to include their requirements in their listing. Then sitters know what to expect and if they don’t want to provide that info they can move on to other listings. I think the majority of sitters expect to provide last name, phone number, and email address (and expect that info from the homeowners too).

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I’m just curious as to the reason for creating a database of past sitters? Is this in order to invite them again? As sitters, we were asked to provide a copy of our DL just once and it was a local sit where we were using our own car, not the homeowners’ vehicle. They just wanted identification. My husband was a bit offended by the request but I was not and we provided it. The homeowners have remained great friends of ours for many years so it all worked out.

I have never ever been asked to provide passport or driving licence details by any home owners. I was also given the loan of the owners car in another country, for a few weeks and i was not asked to produce my driving licence at all. Also offered use of owners cars here in UK a couple of times, although didn’t use but not asked to see driving licence. i frequently do not know surname of home owner until seeing their post arrive. i rarely ever get asked for my surname either. Most times they only have my phone number, which I give before being asked.

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If you were asked the same, how would you feel?

If you feel uncomfortable you probably shouldn’t be asking.


Definitely not invasive. We will be living in your home, looking after one of your most precious items so of course you are interested in our official status and documentation.

I wouldn’t have a problem showing my ID when I arrive at a sit for them to verify that the name and photo matches me. However, as someone who sits frequently, I would not want lots of people that I know very little about having copies of my ID.


Given my 20 years experience in the cybersecurity industry, I’m very leery of providing images of my identity documents to anyone. Identity theft is a very real thing, and difficult to recover from.



As a sitter, I would not be offended exactly, but I would want to know why. You’re right we show our ID’s all the time, but we usually don’t send a copy over the internet, so that could be a security issue that I would like to avoid if possible. If there is a certain reason or the HO offers to send their ID too, then yes, could send ID, but perhaps motivating the question is a good idea. And I’d have no problem showing my ID in person.

I do agree not knowing each other’s last name is a bit of an issue though. As sitters we realized we never have never known the HO’s last name before the sit, we have to figure out from arriving letters or something like that. It usually feels too awkward to ask, so can everyone agree we make it standard to exchange last names prior to the sit :grin:

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Oh, and the reason I think it’s an issue is that if something happens - you have to take the pet to the vet or something else like that - I feel like as a sitter I’d seem very fishy if I didn’t know the owner’s last name. And also I’d just like to know who I made such an important agreement with.

Why a database? I’m just kind of that way. I already have sitters’ phone numbers in my phone contacts since we’ve communicated via text or what’s app, and I haven’t deleted them. It seems like It might be helpful in the future for me to connect the sitter’s name with where I went and when. We’ve kept in touch occasionally with a couple of the sitters when something in the news or something funny came up (and I’d hate to confuse one sitter with another over time). I may also will try to save their profile photo with their contact as that might help, too. (I do that with people I meet on trips, too!)

When we don’t actually meet a sitter, it’s easy to confuse names (Maggie for Maddie or Alex for Allie), whereas I’m much less likely to forget those who have come a day ahead (for dinner), the week before (for brunch), or stayed the next morning (for breakfast)! Yes, we like sharing a meal with our sitters, when possible.

Right. I wouldn’t feel uncomfortable showing my license as they have access to my whole house(!), but wanted to be know how someone else might feel, trying to be respectful. Seems I touched a nerve… Sorry.

@Systaran, @Karen_E,

ABSOLUTELY! I guess I shouldn’t have said having a copy (if that is what I said), but seeing the ID would be nice. It would be best if THS could simply send sitters and homeowners an official email with the sitter/owner information and then we would know it’s valid and wouldn’t feel uncomfortable asking.

I KNOW it’s not allowed now, but certainly it could be something we check on our application (okay or not to share). And if someone checks “NOT OKAY”, I guess that might be a good convo asking why.

How often is information updated with THS? I guess I’d still want to ask for the emergency contact info or at least hame them verify what is on the email.

Yes, knowing last names is indeed a safety issue, too @saasmaka !

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Hi @AmyNJoe. Perhaps something HO could consider would be showing sitters their home insurance document to prove that the house actually does belong to them. I do remember a couple of instances when the sitter arrived to a totally different house from what was on the listing.

I always provide my name, email, phone # and an emergency contact for me once the sit is confirmed. I ask them for the same. And if they are traveling out of country we also set up a What’s App for an alternative contact.
There has been at least one homeowner couple killed in an accident who never came home. So VERY important that all sitters have an alternative family contact for HO’s just in case.
And I definitely want them to have the same in case something happened to me or I had an illness requiring hospitalization or became incapacitated.

Have been asked to show my driver’s license and insurance only once when using a HO’s car. Would def not mind sharing that info if using their vehicle.

It’s important for all of us to have this info for an emergency. Based on years of critical care medicine. You do not want to be an unknown person in an emergency room!!



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Yes @AmyNJoe. Prior to the pandemic, the Forum and video chats being recommended, sitters just had photos (which weren’t compulsory) plus listing information to go by. We’d apply, maybe have a couple of messages between owner and sitter then it was confirmed. Phone chats, especially international ones, were few and far between. These two cases I referred to had trusted the owners to honestly display their home and this didn’t happen. They recalled this happening when responding to a Forum thread a few years ago.

I’d probably decline a sit if I was asked for a passport. It shows me a lack of trust and a distant feeling from the owners. It depends on the communication around it though. If they were lovely people and I could feel warmth from them and they were maybe newbies here, it might be ok.
Last names and phone numbers are obvious things to give, for me! I usually communicate on WhatsApp once we agree to have a chat, after the application.


I pretty much go straight to email and Whatsapp comms once a sit has been confirmed so the owner sees my surname and phone number that way. Only corresponding via the site if often cumbersome for both parties and via Whatsapp you can keep in touch once the owner has left home as well.