Home Selling in 20121>Question Details

chuzek, Home Seller in Centreville, VA

Should the listing agent make time to show their homes to prospective buyers?

Asked by chuzek, Centreville, VA Thu May 16, 2013

The real estate columnists for the Chicago Tribune recently wrote that top flight selling agents should "be there to show the home when prospective buyers come to see it. That agent should know all the positive attributes of the home and be able to point them out, give encouraging information to the buyer and the buyer's agent that they can use to compare your home with other homes in the area, and be there to answer any questions that might come up during the course of a showing."

I haven't seen any Realtors provide this service. Is it something that a Realtor should be willing to do if requested?

They go on to say:
"While it has become routine in many markets to place a lockbox on a home for sale, and have the buyer's real estate agent show the house, we don't feel that the buyer's agent is the best person to be there and make sure the home shows in its best light."

What does everyone think of this?

Help the community by answering this question:


Ron Thomas’ answer
I would not want the LISTING AGENT to be present when I showed my Clients a house; Never!
It is my responsibility to pre-view the property and to know what I am talking about. If I haven't done research on the Listing, the History, the Ownership, the Taxes, the Comps, as well as the layout of the house, then I don't deserve to make the sale!
The Listing Agent has not lived in the house, will not disclose anything pertain, and will only muddy the waters and possibly try to steal my client.
That columnist should stick to what he knows, and Real Estate ain't it.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 16, 2013
"we don't feel that the buyer's agent is the best person to be there and make sure the home shows in its best light."

I might be in the seller's best interest for the Listing Agent to show the house to the buyer, but it certainly is NOT in the buyer's best interest :-)
The listing agent represents the SELLER and cannot say or do anything that could do a financial harm to the SELLER.
Therefore, it is in the buyer's best interest to use their own buyer agent to show them the house and prepare the market analysis.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu May 16, 2013
You are correct about that. Many listings agents don't like to show their listings to a buyer that has an agent. They place a lockbox and they don't like to open the door to anyone that has an agent. I think that is wrong! If they ask the listing agent to be there they should be. Some buyers don't like anyone but their agent to be present when they look at houses, so they can discuss privately what they like and don't about the particular house.

I believe a listing agent been present could work both ways. If the listing agent is present they can point all positives attributes but they have to disclose all known problems with that property as well. A licensed realtor should disclose problems they are aware of anyway. Some might be minor items that can get corrected after a ratified contract anyway. But those items, even if minor, can turn some buyers away from buying that property and go for the one listed next door, if they knew prior on making the offer. After they make the offer buyers are more open minded and able to negotiate corrections made by the seller. They already pictured themselves having coffee on that front porch and cooking on that nice big kitchen when they were signing that contract.

One way of the listing agent to be present at their listings is by hosting open houses. Some agents don't believe on those, but I do. First you are there when prospective clients come alone or with their agent and you make sure that the house shows great the day of the open house. You don't know if that house looks great every day, light are left on, some soft music etc. Second you can get a buyer that has no agent that liked meeting you in person and hires you to be their agent.

I hope that answers your question :)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 17, 2013
Ok, listings where the listing agent HAS TO ACCOMPANY, are usually a scheduling nightmare, since
for that to happen, not only the buyers agent and his/her clients have to have time, but the listing agent
as well. In most of these case the Buyers Agent, who knows his clients and their needs very well, would much rather prefer to show the home by himself with his clients, so that the buyers can ask questions openly, and without either the homeowners or their Agent to listen in...

If during a showing without the listing agent present any questions or concerns are coming up, it will be easy to check on those by having the buyers agent contact the listing agent and ask!!!!

Some Sellers prefer not to have a lock box at the door, and would prefer their agent or his or her assistant to open the door for a showing and the sellers have the right to request that, scheduling often still complicates coordinating a schedule with everyone especially if the buyers agent is showing several properties to his buyers... It takes also a lot of time out of the listing agents schedule since
he or she will have to be there before the 30 minute showing schedule, and after to close up, and what
if the buyers arrive at the end of the 30 minutes, each showing could take for the sellers agent 1 hour or more !!!!

Buyers agents, like to show and point out the plus and minus to their buyers, free of the oversight of
the listing agent!!!! And have their buyers feel comfortable to ask any question they like...while they are going through the home. Buyers also feel more comfortable and so do their Buyers Agents, to quickly leave a property if at first glance it is just not right for them, so much easier without the Seller or the listing agent at the property.
Sincerely yours,
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0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 17, 2013
I do not knows the context of the article ,but keep inu mind that most articles are written from the preconceived angle of the reporter. As an agent with many listings It is impractical iif not impossible for me to be at my listings at anytime a selling agent happens to show it. Much like a seller who points out every minuscule detail of a home even when the purchaser has mentally rejected iit , the listing agent would most often be in the same predicament . The buyer broker knows what their client wants . If your property was truly unique, and that is unusual , then you may want an appointment only with the the listing agent situation. But be prepared for fewer showing as you have placed impediments to showing and many agents will just eliminate your property.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 16, 2013
As a buyer's agent, I don't want the listing agent or the home owner to be there for the very simple reason that neither of us are there to be "sold." As a seller, if you want your home to sell, the answer is very simple - present a good home for a fair price. There is no difference between the real estate business or any other business. The same basic principles apply. What the listing agent should be doing is following up with showings and asking these two very simple questions: "is your client planning on making an offer and if not, what would it take to make the home their number one choice?"
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 16, 2013
It so funny, what this columnist knows about real estate and the laws that govern real estate transactions? What does he know about Agency representation? Does he know that the listing agent might jeopardize his license for violating agency representation if he/she tries to communicate with the buyer without permission. As a buyer agent I don't want any listing agent to talk to my clients.
As for the commercial real estate, this is different and the listing agents are there during showing because for one they don't give access to the buyer or the buyer's agent by having a lock box at the door, so they have to be there to open the door, also most of the time for commercial properties, the property is shown during business operation. In short there is no comparison between Residential and Commercial Real Estate. Most of commercial listings are exclusive agency while the residential is exclusive representation (ask this columnist if he knows the difference between these representations).

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0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 16, 2013
The "selling agent" is the buyer's agent, right?

I think that perhaps the "top flight selling agents" they're writing about are the listing agents for "top flight" properties, and as Curly Sue points out, it's even rare for "top flight" properties.

I can tell you from twenty years of personal experience that I have had to meet the listing agent at a property maybe a half-dozen times.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 16, 2013
Commercial listing agents are almost always present, when possible, to show space to buyers/lessors and their buyer agents for all types of properties. Since the change to allow buyer agency many years ago, residential listing agents rarely perform this task except for unique or very expensive properties. Maybe commercial agents just feel more secure with their client relationships and appreciate the listing agent's contributions. It is impossible to know all the details of every property so why not encourage the assistance.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 16, 2013
The only time I would expect the Listing Agent to be present during a showing is if the property is over a couple million $ ...even then it's a little strange.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 16, 2013
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