Before scheduling a home showing, most people begin their search online. When it comes time to actually view the property, there are a few things to consider when scheduling a home showing.
First of all, unless you are an investor or make a living in real estate, I highly recommend getting a buyer’s agent. See my article How a Buyers Agent Helps for more information.
Once you have identified houses to view, call/text/email your agent to schedule your home showing (or showings). Since you are seriously looking at homes now, you should be flexible with your schedule. Remember, your agent has other clients and a life outside of work.
Having said that, most agents will bend over backwards for their clients and do their best to accommodate your schedule.
At this point, your agent will put in the requests for your home showing appointments. They will contact all of the listing offices for the properties you identified. The listing office/agent will then coordinate with each seller. So if you are trying to see 4 homes in a 2 hour window, understand that we are coordinating your schedule, our schedule and the 4 home owner’s schedules.
Once a home owner confirms the showing, the buyer’s agent gets a notification with showing and access instructions. Sometimes we get lucky and all 4 showings in our example will confirm just as requested. Other times you might only get 3 (or 2 or 1 or NONE) of the 4 requests confirmed. Then it is just a matter of moving showings around to accommodate everybody’s schedule.
Each showing is for a limited window of time.
As tempting as it is to just slowly evaluate every inch of a home, keep in mind that there might be other showings schedule for that home and you might have other showing appointments to get to still. So be respectful of the schedule appointment window and be as punctual as possible.
It is always a good idea to take notes.
With our smart devices these days that can be very easy to do with your voice recorder or note taking app. As tempting as it might be to take pictures inside of a seller’s home, I do not recommend it. Maybe take a picture of the outside if you need a reminder but most photos are available online or from your agent. Sellers are not giving us permission to come in and take photos of their private property.
Efficiency is everything.
Typically we agents will do our best to schedule showings with enough time in between to travel to each showing appointment. So plan to go out and hit one house after another. Typically you can get 30 minutes at each house. I recommend to limit the number of showings in a day to 4 or 5. That is about 2 hour block for all showings. In my opinion it is difficult to keep track of showings beyond that. I also find that people do get fatigued looking at so many houses back to back.
Somethings to consider when you are in seller’s home:
- Follow the seller’s instructions – often sellers will leave instructions about the lights, doors/locks and if they want you to remove your shoes. Always be respectful as it is THEIR home still.
- Beware of Security Devices – some sellers have security systems with cameras and listening devices. Don’t say or do anything in their home thinking that nobody is watching. Always act as if the seller were present.
- Don’t go through personal drawers and items – Of course we want to check cabinet drawers for functionality, open and close closet drawers, etc. Just refrain from looking through the stuff in drawers and closet as much as possible.
- If this is a home you really like, we can always come back for a 2nd showing. Also, you will have plenty of time to really investigate the details of the home if you end up doing a home inspection.
Would you like to learn more about what to expect when viewing potential homes for purchase? Contact me directly here and let me help provide you with the guidance you deserve.