The Essential Guide to Real Estate House Showings for Homeowners

Are you a home owner selling and wondering about real estate house showings? What they are? How they work? Come check out my essential guide!
Home owners showing guide

What is a showing?

A real estate showing is a scheduled appointment for a prospective buyer looking to tour a residential or commercial property.

A showing is typically set up between a showing or listing agent agent, or buyer’s agent, working on behalf of the prospective buyer, and a listing agent, or seller’s agent, working on behalf of the seller.

A showing can also be a scheduled appointment between a home owner and prospective buyer with or without their real estate agent.

The showing agent requests a date and time for their client to view the property through the listing agent, who gets the appointment approved by the seller. A seller has the right to accept or deny a showing request based on whether the date and time fits into their schedule.

Who attends a showing?

Showings can be attended by the prospective buyer, showing agent, the listing agent or the home owner selling the property.

A significant benefit of having the listing agent or home owner seller present at a showing is that all of the prospective buyer’s questions can immediately be answered by the individual who knows the property best.

No follow-up emails, phone calls or texts are necessary. Prospective buyers will have all relevant information once the showing is complete as they prepare to make a decision.

The prospective buyer, who may have seen the property listed online, uses the showing to get a more personal viewing of the property. They can inquire about the home’s history, property, neighborhood – anything that pops into their mind while walking through for a closer look.

The Pros

The pros of a listing agent or home seller attending a showing are:

  • Guaranteed feedback on the listing
  • Available to answer any questions
  • Seamless enter/lock up
  • Possibly speeding up the sales process

The Cons

The cons are:

  • Prospective buyer feels uncomfortable
  • Listing agent misses out on showing other properties
  • Too many voices in the room

How is a showing scheduled?

Showings are traditionally scheduled by phone. In that situation, the showing agent would contact the listing agent to set up the appointment.

Prospective buyers or showing agents begin the process once the buyer finds a property. The buyer contacts the showing agent – or the home owner to communicate their interest and provide dates and times they’re available to tour the property.

The showing agent then contacts the listing agent or owner, to set a date and time to view the property.

The interaction between the showing agent and listing agent can be done through a Multiple Listing Service (MLS), phone call, text message or a mobile app. The showing agent will then communicate the details back to the prospective buyer.

How long do showings take?

Just as every home is different, so too is every prospective buyer. Despite being extremely interested in an online advertisement, a prospective buyer could instantly know upon arrival the property isn’t for them and leave.

Another might immediately fall in love with it and spend an hour walking through the home, planning where every last family photo will hang.

A good rule of thumb for sellers is to plan on being away from home for around two hours. Showing agents can also help by letting the seller or listing agent know when the showing is complete.

What are the different types of showings?

Private Showings

Private showings, are usually the most beneficial for prospective buyers. They get to view the property in their own time frame, don’t have to deal with or feel pressured by other prospective buyers and, if they reach this stage, are typically very interested.

Open houses

Open houses have long been the first step prospective buyers take into the home buying process, though the internet is changing that.

However, this type of showing is still a great tool for listing agents to get many people to view their property, typically on a weekend. Although open houses don’t typically sell homes, they tend to help listing agents generate new leads.

Lockbox showings

Lockbox showings are becoming more and more popular. Rather than the listing agent meeting the showing agent and prospective buyer at the property to let them in, or the showing agent filling up their key ring, the listing agent provides the showing agent with a special digital code to access a lockbox during a specific time period.

This type of showing, which is efficient for vacant properties, is a great way for showing agents and their prospective buyers to pop in and out of multiple properties and get a feel for what’s available without taking up a portion of the listing agent and seller’s day.

How do real estate agents help?

In any kind of market – whether it’s a buyer’s market or a seller’s market – it’s important for listing agents and sellers to do everything possible to increase the visibility of their listing. Top-performing agents are great at creating interest, getting showings and selling listings at or near list price.

How do they do it?

The decision to buy or sell a home can be emotionally taxing and stressful. For sellers, a home that won’t sell can raise pressing questions that can keep them up at night. For prospective buyers, the process for choosing the right home can likewise present challenges as they navigate the market.

Fortunately, agents are uniquely suited to help their client, whether buyer or seller. By setting the right framework for a smooth showing and feedback process, an agent or homeowner can be confident that their client receives the guidance they need to make the transaction stress-free.

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