Most agents will call ahead of time before they show your home. If you are not home, they will leave a message on your answering machine. Unfortunately, “no shows” do occur from time to time. Even the most careful agent may not show up at the appointed time because they may be running late (some buyers look at each home longer than others), or the buyer may have decided against your area or your style of home. Most agents attempt to make a follow-up call to explain, but even the best forget sometimes.
Occasionally, an agent may drive by with a buyer who would like to see your home immediately. The agent may come to your door to request a showing, trying to capitalize on the moment. If it’s convenient and the home is in reasonable condition for a showing, accommodate the showing. If not let the agent know when it would be an appropriate time for a showing—in an hour, or later that day. Remember, you’re also trying to capitalize on the excitement of the buyer. Don’t turn away a buyer, if at all possible.
It is best for you not to be present during showings. Buyers talk and look more freely when you are gone. Since this is not always possible, if you find yourself at home during a showing, don’t attempt to show your home. Let the agent sell your home. And yes, there will be times when your home is being shown by an agent who makes you wonder if they could sell ice water in a desert, it is still best to remain silent. It also reduces the possibility of you inadvertently revealing any information that the buyer might use against you later if they should make an offer on your home.
Here’s some additional tips for preparing your home for a showing:
– Close the garage door.
– Try to find someplace for the kids and pets.
– Turn on all the lights and open all of the curtains. The only exception being if the view outside a window is less than desirable, draw the curtains.
– If there’s a smoker in the house, remove the ashtrays and any other evidence of tobacco.
– The aroma of freshly baked bread or freshly opened coffee creates a pleasant image in a buyers mind. This works good on an open house too. At a minimum the home needs to be odor free.
– Soft music playing in the background is also an ideal way to create a pleasant atmosphere.
– As best you can, keep vehicles from parking in the driveway and directly in front of the house.
– Keep the exterior of the house clean and maintained and the interior neat and tidy as possible to stay prepared for those “surprise” visits.