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Trulia New Y…, Other/Just Looking in New York

Should one be home when my homes is being shown?

Asked by Trulia New York, New York Fri Dec 14, 2012

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My feeling is different: at some point the two parties are going to try to negotiate. I think that having a sense of who the other party is and where they are coming from makes this go smoother, with a bit more trust on both sides, since they are not dealing with an unknown party. To a degree a buyer will be more willing to purchase from someone he or she likes and vice versa. My best deals are hammered out at the kitchen table. And that happens less and less often, for a variety of reasons.

When asked this question, I normally reply that the seller should be there to introduce themselves and stay close enough to answer questions that may be directed to them later, but not accompany us throughout the property, keeping at a discrete enough distance that a buyer can comment freely without being overheard.

But every case is different. There are both buyers and sellers who are so open and honest you want them to meet each other. And there are ones who are their own worst enemy and should be kept apart as much as possible.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 15, 2012
Absolutely not! Homeowners should never be home when their homes are being shown by a professional sales agent. In addition, I demand that my clients pack away all their family photos and clutter. Remember the objective of listing/selling, and showing a home is to have the potential buyer focus and view your home as their next option. Family photos make buyers curious about the homeowners and they simply focus more attention on your family photos and loose focus on why they are in the home. Another concern is that all homeowners are emotionally attached to their homes and they may not enjoy buyers coming into their home and criticizing their taste in decor. Worst yet buyers tend to gravitate to the homeowners and they will ask the most inappropriate questions regarding their home, and the homeowner will answer and possibly volunteer information that will kill the deal, or worst yet the sellers will give the buyers answers that may later be used against the sellers as leverage.
Flag Sat Nov 2, 2013
Absolutely not! Homeowners should never be home when their homes are being shown by a professional sales agent. In addition, I demand that my clients pack away all their family photos and clutter. Remember the objective of listing/selling, and showing a home is to have the potential buyer focus and view your home as their next option. Family photos make buyers curious about the homeowners and they simply focus more attention on your family photos and loose focus on why they are in the home. Another concern is that all homeowners are emotionally attached to their homes and they may not enjoy buyers coming into their home and criticizing their taste in decor. Worst yet buyers tend to gravitate to the homeowners and they will ask the most inappropriate questions regarding their home, and the homeowner will answer and possibly volunteer information that will kill the deal, or worst yet the sellers will give the buyers answers that may later be used against the sellers as leverage.
Flag Sat Nov 2, 2013
It's a case by case basis, but I think its best to be home. In case they have any detailed questions that your agent cannot answer. Besides, you can't trust any random person from the street.
Flag Thu Dec 27, 2012
As a buyer's agent for over 13 years I have never had a showing where the seller benifited the situation by being present. Buyer's really like to be able to explore a property without the added pressure.
6 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 15, 2012
No, get the hail out of there. If you were such a good salesperson, you'd be the listing agent!

Besides which - you're trying to get it to stop being your house, right?

So, let the visitor feel less like a guest and more like a potential owner.
3 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 14, 2012
Showing your home is the responsibility of the agent you have retained. Your being there can be disruptive and interfere with the agents presentation. When the seller is there it is usually an uncomfortable situation for the buyer as they hold back from freely expressing themselves and asking questions important to them.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 28, 2012
As Mack clearly stated, "Get the Hail out of there!'
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But won't the seller be able to share all the wonderful years they've spent there? Won't being able to respond to a buyers questions directly prove beneficial. Although it sounds good, the right answer is NO, NO and NO.
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CLEAVER BUYER: "You have a lovely home here. If I lived here I couldn't imagine myself ever leaving. May I ask, why are you moving?"
SELLER" 'This such a paradise to live in. We raised or two boys here and can not think of a better place. Its only that the drive to the pharmacy downtown just got to be too much. Otherwise we would NEVER move"
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The buyers agent had just convinced the buyer the commute downtown would be easy and much less than their current commute from the NJ suburbs. AND the buyer has no pharmacological needs.
NO SALE!
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Please, don't be home. Make cookies. Turn on the lights. Open the curtains. Confine the critters. Go shopping.
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Best of success to you,
Annette Lawrence, Broker/Associate
Remax Realtec Group
Palm Harbor, FL
727.420.4041
http://RealEstateMadeEZ.us
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Dec 16, 2012
Well since the agents bringing someone for a showing knows nothing about the property except what the buyer can read on the listing sheet, how do they answer questions?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 21, 2014
I agree, the owner should never be home. Let a professional handle the viewings.

--

Nicolas Puygrenier ǀ Licensed Real Estate Broker
Mona Lisa Real Estate Group LLC
419 Lafayette Street, New York, NY 10003
Telephone: 917 499 1917
Email: nicolas.puygrenier@monalisanyc.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 4, 2013
I guess it's a question specific to your home market and the vibe of it. As someone who shows/sells residential real estate in NYC (where most homes are located in a building that doesn't require inspecting, because whatever happens outside your walls is the responsibility of the building management), there's really very little to be disclosed by the seller--especially since the seller is already legally required to disclose any known issues with the property.

Here, pretty much no one buys or sells a property without legal counsel, and almost every building has an offering plan, which is reviewed thoroughly by the attorney between the (non-binding) acceptance of offer and the actual signing/contract deposit.

In some parts of the country, it may be great to have a face to put with the name--or, in this case, house. I completely respect that. In NYC, it is the custom for the seller to be absent and the agent or broker to do the work.

In general, I would strongly recommend finding a local real estate agent whom you trust, contracting them to do the job of selling your home, and then asking them where you, as the seller, should be during open houses. My guess is that about 90% of them will advise you to go have a nice lunch. Remember that they are contractually bound to act in good faith on behalf of you, the seller, and let them do their job...you wouldn't hire a lawyer and expect to sit in on every deposition. You have to find someone to do the job and then LET them do the job. If you, as a seller, have concerns, you may need to look elsewhere for an agent/broker you trust to act in good faith and according to the terms of their contract.

Just my two cents. I am happy to refer you to a reputable, honest salesperson, if you are unsure of your current relationship...fake Trulia questioner. ;)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 24, 2013
I always recommend that on the first open house or home viewing that the couple go see a movie or go out to lunch. This helps the prespective buyers to feel more at ease when discusing the home.

Most clients feel that their home is perfect just the way it is and hearing others talk about it can sometimes be hard to digest.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 24, 2013
Its never a good idea to be home when your property is being shown. You want your buyers to feel good in your house and you wouldn't want them feeling like they dont belong there. Just go out for lunch.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jan 24, 2013
It's better not to be present thats the way you can get the value able feed back.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 29, 2012
Nope. Nope, nope, nope, nope, nope.

Clear out and let the agent/broker do the work you're paying them to do...trust me, it makes everything far smoother and easier.

If you're concerned about leaving your valuables, lock them up or take them with you.

Thanks for the fake question, Trulia!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 29, 2012
Sorry folks, not a real consumer asking the question but TRULIA planting questions. It is a good question compared to some.... A home owner should never be home for a showing just as Trulia should not plant questions. Let real consumers ask real questions.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 29, 2012
No you don't want to be there at all. If you're there you'll have to answer questions and possibly be caught lying/misleading. Let the professional handle 'guiding' the commentary, plus this way you can claim ignorance if they are told something not true.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 28, 2012
Sometimes there are unavoidable situations but for the most, I'd always prefer that the seller or tenat remove themselves from the property for showings.

Agents and buyer feel more relaxed. NOTHING is worse that an over zealous seller who whats to point out every feature to a prospective buyer. This is the least helpful thing they can do.

Lisa Wetzel
RE/MAX Realty Affiliates
1320 Hwy 395
Gardnerville, NV 89410
775-781-5472
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 22, 2012
No, agents should always advise their sellers to leave the home while it is being shown. Potential buyers and their agents should have the privacy to discuss the home and all of its pros and cons openly while touring the home. This is impossible if the seller is there.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 22, 2012
No. Sellers should not be at home when it's being shown. Buyers and their agents don't appreciate it and would prefer to have some privacy to view your home and speak freely; which they cannot do if the Seller is present.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 22, 2012
I would suggets the seller to be there because some buyers prefer to ask questions directly to the home owner.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 22, 2012
Thank you, Annette!

I think you hit the #1 question that we don't want our sellers to answer: "Why are you moving?"

There's no good response to that question, no answer that improves the seller's negotiating position.

"We've outgrown this little cubby and we're buying a bigger and more expensive house in a better neighborhood."

"We can't maintain this big house so we're moving to something smaller and more affordable."

"We can't stand the neighbors."

"I swore I'd never leave this place, but I came home early last Tuesday and found my husband and his girlfriend in my bed."
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Dec 16, 2012
Hi, Buyers tend to be more comfortable and open when a home seller isn't lurking. I always recommend, if you have to be home during a showing just step outside during it.

Christopher Pagli
Licensed Associate Broker
Accredited Buyer Representative
914.406.9023
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Dec 16, 2012
The seller should not be home when it is being shown. This is usually an uncomfortable situation for a buyer who wants to open the cabinets etc. I once had a buyer who requested a second showing because she wanted to see inside the cabinets and did not want to do so because the owner was there.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 15, 2012
I also recommend the owner not be there. It's best to leave it to a professional for a variety of reasons.
For example, if an owner is in fact a motivated seller, a savvy buyer can pick up on that through simple conversation. This could have an effect on the price of an offer.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 15, 2012
I would also take sides with not being home as this is a business and personally does no good The buyer's agent can always find out any questions the buyer has. You could however be home for the inspection if and when an accepted offer is done. Best of Luck, Allam
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 14, 2012
it doesn't matter. As long as you are not walking around with the agent and the buyers acting like a tour guide, there is no need for you to leave your own home.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 14, 2012
Excellent question. I get asked this question a lot from clients. Homeowners have the right to be present during Open Houses or private showings. Though I do not necessarily recommend this, simply because it may make a potential purchaser feel uncomfortable, uneasy and want to rush the tour. Homeowners who are on high guard in regards to protecting their possessions and privacy could always request (invitation only) Open Houses, and request that another Broker accompany private showings.

I hope this answered your question! If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact me by the ways below.


Wishing you all the best,

De Vonte Williamson , LSA
Proudly Serving Long Island
Coldwell Banker Residential
(631)384-3695
http://cbmoves.com/DeVonte.Williamson
http://devontesellsny.wordpress.com/
http://www.facebook.com/ISellNY
DeVonte.Williamson@cbmoves.com
"I Stand Behind Getting You Results!"
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 14, 2012
Having been on both sides on numerous occasions, I would suggest that no one be home. If there has to be someone, then no more than 1-2 people and that they stay quiet in an area, like the kitchen and only answer questions when asked.

The worst situation is when young children are home. I have kids of my own so I love kids but I have never seen a good open house or showing with young kids.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 14, 2012
This is a big big NO! - as all the agents are probably going to say that. The owners are strongly advised not to be present during showings for various reasons: one of them is that the owners are emotionally attached to their home. They will probably start talking to potential buyers pointing out things that they think are important or good for them but may not be that important or good to the buyers. It is better to leave the showing to a professional, who knows the selling points are and what things they should not point out, etc., and who does not have emotional connection to the house.

I read somewhere that if the owner has to sell but is not happy with this fact they may even unconsciously sabotage the sale, lets say start cooking smelly dishes or say something in front of the sellers that would scare them off. It is really better not to be present at the showing, provided that you are confident and comfortable with your agent.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 14, 2012
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