Guidelines for Showing Your House
A seller should be willing to give almost unlimited access to potential purchasers if they are looking to sell. Any restrictions to showing the home will result in fewer buyers which could result in a lower price, a longer time on market or both.
Let the listing agent put a lock box on your house. With lock boxes, we can set it up so that the Buyer’s agent must call and schedule an appointment to show your home. Lock boxes make it easy to show your home. Agents will often skip houses if the listing agent has to meet the buyer and agent at the house.
As far as showings, first of all, you, your children and your pets should leave your home and let the Realtor® show the house. If you are unable to get your pets out of the house, please put your pets in cages. There are many people who are allergic to cats and will panic if they see a cat in the house.
The Realtor® knows what the Buyers are looking for and the Buyers may not be impressed by what you think is important in the house.
- Make sure the Yard is manicured, grass is cut, mulch is fresh, leaves are raked up. Keep the plants and flowers alive, trimmed and looking good.
- Put away outdoor tools, put away bikes, kids toys, any equipment in the yard.
- Put Cars in the garage if they will fit, not in the driveway. Or move cars away from the house.
- Open up all curtains, window shades and turn on all lights including basement and garage.
- For evening showing, turn on all outdoor lights.
- If you have a bad view out the windows, the leave the blinds partially closed but add a lot more lighting.
Clean, Clean Clean
- All beds should be made up.
- Everything in the home should be clean including kitchen and baths. There should be no dishes in the sink and very little on the kitchen counters.
- Clean folded towels should be in the bathrooms.
- Fresh flowers are a nice touch on the Dining Room table.
- Empty your kitchen trash every time you have a showing and other trash around the house.
- Get the pets out of the home or put them in cages preferably in the garage or basement. A man or lady in their business clothes do not like a dog to jump on them and get their clothes dirty.
- Do not use a strong spray but use Fabreze spray to neutralize pet smells.
- Change cat litter often and move it to the garage during showings.
- There should be no cooking smells.
- If your basement smells musty, use a dehumidifier and Fabreze.
- Open the windows if possible to air the home out.
- There should be no cigarette smells.
- If you wish, you can play soft background elevator type music but no loud music.
- Turn off all televisions
- Do not run dishwasher, washer, dryer or anything else while the home is being shown.
- Keep the windows closed if there are any outside noises.
Information for Buyers:
- Be sure the brochures on the home are out in a conspicuous place.
- Leave out any neighborhood information or neighborhood newsletters and notice of any neighborhood events.
- Leave out the association rules and regulations (if you are in an association).
- If you have seasonal photos of your home showcasing flower gardens bursting in color or a snow covered lawn with twinkling lights or anything else showing your home in its best light, leave them out.
- Also include before and after photos of any renovations that you have done.
- Everything inside should be put away. All toys should be put away.
- Put all jewelry away. Better yet, put it in a safety deposit box while your home is for sale.
- Put away prescription drugs.
- Set the heat at least 68 in the winter and the AC equal or cooler than 78 in the summer. You want the buyer to feel comfortable in the home and a home that is too hot or too cold is a turnoff. You want the Buyer to stay longer in your home and if they are too hot or too cold, they will leave sooner.
- Don’t expect the Buyer to remove shoes for showings, unless you are selling to a Buyer whose religious or cultural reasons mandate it. Otherwise, taking off shoes is insulting and a pain for most buyers and a problem for people with orthopedic injuries.