Home Selling in Charlotte>Question Details

Trulia Charl…, Other/Just Looking in Charlotte, NC

Should you be there when your home is being shown to buyers?

Asked by Trulia Charlotte, Charlotte, NC Mon Apr 8, 2013

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Blanca Dover’s answer
I usually recommend that my sellers not be present. Some buyers feel uncomfortable and unable to view the home freely. They hold back their opinions and usually seemed pressured to view the home quickly.
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0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 3, 2013
Whether you are using an agent, or selling it yourself - the correct answer is no. Unfortunately, if you are selling it yourself, you'd essentially have to let strangers walk through your home unsupervised.

Simply put, when owners are present, it tends to make people "rush" through the property. You don't have to walk the dog for 2 hours, or "leave" necessarily, but staying out of the way is always the best idea.

Unfortunately - I've seen far too many situations where the owners insist on being present - then try to "sell" their house to the people looking at it, by explaining the history, what they've upgraded, etc. etc. Sometimes they'll try to start negotiating as well. These tactics only do one thing - make the buyer uncomfortable and want to leave.

I realize that some people would love nothing more than a world where there are no real estate agent "middlemen" to deal with, and you could simply sit down with buyers and negotiate everything directly person to person.

What these people don't understand is what a gigantic mess it would ultimately turn into, and what an inconvenience the appointment process would be for both the buyer and the seller.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri May 3, 2013
I always recommend that Sellers not be there when a home is being shown. I have had times where clients cannot leave, so I recommend that they try and stay out of the way for the buyers. You want buyers to be able to feel comfortable and try to imagine this as their home. It is very uncomfortable to have a Seller walking around watching you as you open closets & telling everything that makes it their home.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 26, 2014
Not a good idea because you want potential buyers to feel confortable as they walk through your home and share their open thoughts with their buyer's agent along the way. Sellers tend to be in some way emotionally attached to their homes, their home projects so forth and so on. Buyers want to visualize themselves in homes and discuss what changes they would make to individualize homes to their tastes. Sellers attending showings would bring forward and emphasize what they've done over time to make the selling homes their homes. Thanks!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 18, 2013
Should you- No...
Could you- Yes

But if you are present, do not follow them around let their agent showing them do his or her job- if you follow them it can make them feel rushed, and pushed. In some cases, HELD UP, or even give off the impression that the house is too small. Imagine a bunch of people following you down one hallway, if the buyer tries to back up or look around, your presence could give the illusion of a small home... just don't do it if you don't have to.

When I was seeking my own home to purchase the biggest gripe I had was owners who shoved everything down my throat... from pictures on walls to, paint colors they chose, and carpeting.

Buyers will look, it will take them 10 minutes TOPS to make a decision... no need to slow them down and point out every detail unless they ask about it. It could actually leave a bad taste in their mouth.

If YOU HAVE TO be home, just chill out in the living room, or outdoors if weather permits.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jun 28, 2013
Absolutely not, although exceptions could be made if there is a clear need not to leave, for example, if you have a home-bound disabled person. In such a case, you should make yourself as scarce and invisible as possible. If it is a lesser reason, for example, not having transportation, if you can go outside, assuming the weather is reasonably pleasant, and away from the house out of sight, so the buyers won't feel rushed, that would be acceptable, but not the best.

Put yourself in the shoes of the buyers' shoes. They want to view the house thoroughly, if they like it. They don't want to feel rushed, and they do want to be able to open closets, cabinets, drawers, attic accesses, storage rooms, etc., without feeling as if they are prying on you or invading your privacy right under your eyes.

They also want to discuss its pros and cons openly without worrying about offending you or giving you a clue that they do like the house, which might make you more less likely to negotiate with them and more likely to reject any offer less than full listing price.

Further, they almost never want to get drawn into conversation (unless there's some specific info they want that the agent can't give them - although he/she can find out or even ask you later) and will worry about that, yet feel obligated to "be nice."

Besides, it's just awkward for everyone. No one feels comfortable. Remember, you are much like two opposing parties in a negotiation, whether that negotiation has begun or not or ever will. Your objective is maximum sales price with terms of your choosing. Their objective is minimum price with terms of their choosing.

Last, in my experience (I'm a former broker and owner of a small company), it is the owners who most often offer up information that is detrimental to them. Examples: An adolescent child telling the buyers that the neighbors were hateful, no one gets along, and everyone fights. An owner telling the buyer that he needed to sell fast to move to take care of critically ill parents who couldn't wait much longer for help. An owner telling what he owed on the house. An owner telling the buyer that he owned the house with no mortgage and didn't need money. In the first case, the buyers left immediately. In the others, the buyers beat the price down far lower than they would otherwise have paid.

There was one more bad example: And an owner making an ethnic slur.

You probably wouldn't do any of these obviously disadvantageous things, but it's easy to be lulled by charming people and pleasant conversation into disclosing things you might not otherwise want to disclose.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jun 26, 2013
I always ask the sellers to leave when showing a home. Some prospective buyers like to verbally list the pros and cons of a place as they are viewing each room and some sellers find it insulting when someone is walking through their house and criticizing everything they see.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 2, 2013
Hello Charlotte,

The buyers will feel self conscious and they won't "relate" to your house as much, if you stay at home while showing your property. You want the buyers to fall in love with the property to make an offer.

However, if there is a shortage of inventory, I've seen buyers overcoming the seller presence,
and making offers anyway. Of course, the property needs to be depersonalized (no personal pix),
and de-cluttered, as well as staged - to sell quicker and for more money.

Hope this helps,

Irina Karan
Beachfront Realty, Inc.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 2, 2013
It makes no difference to a sincere and interested buyer. However, a seller's presence makes the average showing agent very, very fearful. Here are some reasons: the agent dies not really have a buyer, they are showing a poential sales listing what comps are available; th agent brings his/her lover for a tryst and can claim they are showing houses in case the spouse catches them; the agent is just randomly unlocking doors without any knowledge of the properties just to wear down a buyer. Unfortunately, the best residential agents in Charlotte (not many of them available) only work with qualified select clients in a price range over $750K. Mel Frank
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Apr 21, 2013
Regardless of where the agent or seller is from...

The money is on the seller NOT being present during the showings especially if the buyer has an agent.

So many reasons why, the top reason being they get so touchy and offended if the buyers make a comment that the sellers don't like.

Further, Buyers are always uncomfortable with sellers present, and most especially if sellers follow them around.

Make it a pleasant experience for the buyer and leave.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 8, 2013
I find it best that the seller not be present for showings. When a buyer comes to view a home, they want to be able to really look at the house without feeling like they are intruding on the seller. A buyer will want to look the house over thoroughly to see if it's a good fit for them and with the seller there or worse, following them around, they don't really feel comfortable doing that. If a buyer doesn't feel comfortable in the home to actually look at the home instead of worrying if they are bothering the seller, they will go through the house very fast and probably not by that house.

A sellers goal is to have the future buyer feel comfortable in the home and take their time going through the home so they can get a good feel for it. The longer a potential buyer stays in your home, the better chance you have them making an offer.

So my advise is go for a walk, do some errands, go to a neighbors house, anything to get you out of the house so you can hopefully sell your house to the next buyer!

Tracy Clay
Wilkinson & Associates
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 8, 2013
Good afternoon:
There might be some instances where the Seller might require their agent might be present at showings, or that the Buyer be pre-approved, but generally a Seller should not be present when their property is being shown to prospective Buyers. They almost never serve their best interests by touring their home with the Buyer. If you appreciate an answer, please give thumbs up. For the most helpful answer, please say thanks with a best answer click.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 8, 2013
Being a Realtor today i have been in a situation where the sellers have been home for showings and I have had listings where the seller was home for the showing. I do not advocate the seller being home for the showings at all...unless absolutely necessary.

From a buyers agent perspective it does not make sense for the seller to be present for the showings. Buyer's are going in to look at the house with the persepctive that the seller is not there and they want to be able to look and talk freely. When a seller is present you are starting to think that the seller is watching you and hovering over you and you cannot look and talk without feeling uncomfortable.

Then the seller starts intervening with theri two cents about things in the house based on the buyer's body language. This tends to turn the buyer off and they will tend to walk away form the house and you may be losing an important buyer that may have been the buyer for the house.

On the seller side I do not like having the seller there becuase I want the buyer to walk through the house freely and be able to look and go back around the house at their leisure without feeling that they are intruding or worried about the seller putting in their two cents as well... i always tell my sellers to vacate the house.

Dave diCecco
Coldwell Banker United
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 8, 2013
I always recommend not to be there. It's hard for a buyer to see a home as something that could be THEIRS, if you, the owner are there during the showing.

John Siddons
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 8, 2013
Preferably the home owner should not be at the home during showings, for many many reasons, there are always exceptions to a rule of course if age, or illness or a not so friendly dog requires the owners to
be at the home, when the Buyers Agent arrives with the clients, but in general any interaction short of
hi hi, is not recommended, as not to interfere with the buyers looking at the home, to figure out if it will
meet their needs and so not to be distracted by the owners, their dog or anything else for that matter.

Could the owners be close by and return quickly after the showing sure..... there is a reason why each side Seller and Buyer have the representation by a professional Realtor to take out of any negotiations any personal or emotional issues of any kind.

Sincerely yours,
Edith YourRealtor4Life & Chicago and Northern Illinois Expert

Working always in the very BEST interest of her clients, Buyers, Sellers and Investors alike....
And always with a SMILE 
Covering for @Properties the city of Chicago, all N and NW suburbs, the fine homes on the
North Shore, and many of the W and SW suburbs, and with her trusted Partner Agents all of
the US and worldwide properties. Edith speaks French, German, some Spanish and other.....
@Properties ---- EdithSellsHomes@gmail.com
Check out my website at htttp://tinyurl.com/YourRealtor4Life
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 8, 2013

I cannot speak for every real estate agent/buyer, but I can tell you with confidence, that the number one way to make a buyer/agent feel uncomfortable is to greet them at the door. I have had very minimal success in selling homes when the seller is present.

Here is the deal, as a seller, when your home is being shown, you want the buyer to feel as many personal feelings about the home as possible. When the seller is present or the seller's personality is all over the house, it limits the buyer's ability to see themselves in the home, and costs you major showing points.

Long story short, trust that the agent showing your home will take care of business properly, and will treat your home with the same respect you would.

If you need anything in the Charlotte, NC area, please do not hesitate to contact me :)

Michael Bowman
Benham Real Estate Group
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 8, 2013
If there is an agent present showing your home it is not at all necessary. Any questions the buyers may have will go through their agent back directly to you.

Not only that, speaking from a buyers point of view, when I was looking at homes for myself to purchase, sometimes the owners of some homes would follow me around making it uncomfortable and crowded in smaller rooms. It became an overkill, with the owner throwing every bit of information down my throat, when I never asked for it in the first place and it frustrated me.

If you are home for the showings, just sit back and let them look around with their agent. If they have questions, just be present to answer them.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 8, 2013
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