I have just returned from showing 13 houses to a client and thought that it it's about time to write something about the process of listing and showing your house. After all, I have been doing this for 20 years, so hopefully, I have seen most, if not all, of the challenges. And this blog is meant to help you sell your house with the minimum of fuss. One can go on the web and read scores of articles telling you how to prepare your house for showing, eg. paint the front door, spruce up the garden, bake some cookies and leave the smell to permeate the house etc etc. But what about the logistics of showing the house? Well here goes......some may like this, and others, not. But it's the truth.
When my client and I have identified a number of homes to view, it then befalls me to sort through the houses and to put them in some sort of geographical order so that we don't double back to look at houses we could have seen while in the neighborhood, the first time. Once I have an itinerary set, I allot a certain window of time to show the house. Normally it's a time slot anywhere from 1 hour to 2 hours, especially if it's a large expensive house. (Here in Ga. that's any house north of $1m in price). Now, you will say, how can you show 10 or more houses with a time slot of 2 hours? Simple - sometimes, there are three homes in the same community and I can do those three in an hour, plus a bit.
After I have this all meticulously scheduled for the next day, I start to call the homeowner or their agent requesting a showing between say 11:00AM and 12:00PM. More often than not, most homeowners agree. Here's where the drama comes in - someone will call back at 9:00 PM and say "Little Johny has a ball game and we can't take the dog at that time. Can you please delay the showing by two hours?" Guess what dear friend? The homeowner has just screwed all the other showings, UNLESS I totally cancel this one, which I am always reluctant to do.
The whole idea to getting your home shown and sold, is to make it as easy as possible for the buyer to see it. No conditions, no last minute changes, preferably no pets and definitely no humans present. This causes the potential buyer to be reticent to explore the house and feel at home.
One last thing about showings, and then I'll zip it.
Too often I see remarks by the listing agent in the private section which only the Realtors can see, and it goes something like this, "Should the listing agent be required to show the house to your buyer, the commission paid will be reduced by 66.66%" (I know that there are a few buyers agents who will not carry their responsibility and request the listing agent to step in for them). What that tells me is that your agent is not committed enough to show the house to my client in an emergency. And do they really think that I will forfeit that compensation after having shown my client as many as 50 houses? So I may simply skip that house, which may be yours. So you may want to ask your listing agent about this. And by the way, I love going into a re-listing presentation where the previous listing agent has done that. It's a slam dunk for me to get the listing from them. COMMITMENT, my friend is how your house gets sold.
Be on the lookout for a blog about listing your house and pricing etc.