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MindMyHouse News

House sitters, check out your new ‘My Assignments’ feature

by Susan Holtham

Introducing your new ‘My Assignments’ section for house sitters, which will list all of the assignments that you have applied for, and much more!

Your new ‘My assignments’ page is linked from your Dashboard.

Since we launched MindMyHouse in February 2005 (15 years ago!) we have received a ton of comments from you regarding your messages to home owners, including: “I want to be able to track our assignments on your site!” “I’m tired of waiting for home owners to respond to us!” “I want a record of all the assignments we have applied for!” We have listened to you, dear members, and thus, voila, the next time you all login to your personal Dashboard on MindMyHouse, look to find your brand-new, just-outta-the-box ‘My Assignments‘ section.

All your assignments are now on one page in your account area, divided into categories.

Overview

Your new ‘My house sitting assignments’ page will list all of the assignments that you have applied for. These records are coded using a ‘traffic-light’ system of colours that you should be familiar with. Check out the following color-coded categories we have put into place:

  • Assignments you were successfully chosen for and are coming up in the future
  • Assignments you are waiting to hear back from
  • Assignments that went to someone else
  • Assignments that you successfully completed in the past
  • Assignments that you applied for in the past, which you weren’t offered, and the listing has been switched to Hide mode or deleted by the home owner

We went through a number of design iterations to try to get this right. No easy feat as there is a lot of complexity going on, behind the scenes. Hopefully we got it right!

Other features

In addition to being able to see the status of your assignments past, present and future, there are a few other cool things we’ve introduced.

My ‘House sits’ number badge

As you complete house sitting assignments, we will show and update your ‘Number of assignments completed’ badge on your listing. Please note that we have only just started collecting these figures, and thus all of our house sitter members will be starting with the dreaded ‘0’. If you want recognition for house sitting assignments that you completed in 2019, please use this form and we will update your House sits number badge for you (it may take us a few days to process these, so please be patient :)).

When you complete a house sitting assignment, it will now show on your ‘Sitter available’ listing as above.

How many other house sitters have applied for this assignment?

Another great thing that we can do, now that we are tracking assignments, is to show you how many applicants there have been, for each house sitting assignment, in real time. This may seem hard to believe, but we occasionally get emails from home owners complaining of getting no responses from house sitters! So if you see a ‘0’ next to a listing, feel free to jump to it! Conversely, if the number of existing applicants is high, you may want to reconsider making the effort. Having said that, if the listing is still visible, it may mean that the owner still hasn’t found the right person, so you don’t have much to lose by trying. And coming soon, we plan to create a handy new search filter, so that you can select for those listings with low numbers of applicants first. Howzat?

You can now see how many other sitters have applied for a particular assignment.

Hurrah! I was successful πŸ™‚ …or not πŸ™

If you are lucky and get picked by a home owner to take care of their precious home, you should now receive an email from us (MindMyHouse) to confirm [happy face]. We say should, as it’s still possible for home owners to bypass this system because we want to give home owners options (lots of options!) for contacting our house sitter members when using our service. But, please note that we are strongly encouraging home owners to use this new system, so that you (the house sitter) are kept informed of the status of your applications.

Also, we’ve now made it super easy for home owners to notify you if they have chosen someone else [sad face] from their list of applicants. So, expect an email from us when that happens as well. This was our number one complaint from house sitters: “Why have I not heard back from the home owner regarding my application?” We are hoping that we have (mostly) fixed this big issue. If we haven’t, let us know, please…

Oops, I already applied for that one

Previously, you might have struggled to keep your own personal records of assignments applied for through our service. Perhaps? No longer! When you go to send those all important messages to home owners applying for assignments, if we detect a duplicate, we’ll tell you about it. Noice!

You can now see if you have already applied for a particular assignment.

And lastly…

Please note that all of these new features only really apply after April 2020, which is when we rolled this out. Any house sitting assignments that you applied for before then won’t show in your new My Assignments area in your Dashboard.

Also, we’ve updated our Support area with thirteen new FAQs on the subject to help you. If you have a question, please try here first before contacting us.

It sure took us a while, but we feel that we have finally (mostly) caught up with our most popular competitors in terms of the level of sophistication of our website platform. This is despite being a little Mom and Pop business and not having a ton of staff! We are now confident that we can offer a similar level of service with our new wraparound site design, for around 10% of one of our competitor’s annual dual membership fee. If you love it, send us a quick comment on our Community page. Enjoy!

Posted in: MindMyHouse News
Susan Holtham

About the author: Susan Holtham

The editor at MindMyHouse is a fun gal, intrepid traveller (in a former life), holder of three passports and enthusiastic house sitter. A book editor by trade, she did a three-year stint with Lonely Planet Publications at the start of her career. During her time at LP she shepherded many titles through the production process. Baaaa-aaaa-aaaaaa! Now that two gorgeous little girls call her mummy she's a very busy woman tending to their needs and to the occasional cries for help from among our 5000+ membership. No really, she's always keen to help!