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Frequently Asked Questions About Showings

You can't sell your home unless you can show it, right? Successful showings are a large factor in getting your home sold! So how does it work and what should you expect from the process?

The Alvarado Real Estate Group contracts with a third party service, Showing Time, to handle all of the showing requests for your home from cooperating REALTORS® and even from us directly. We use this service to properly track all showings and have an efficient way to receive important feedback to pass on to you.

 

How does it work?

We provide Showing Time your contact information and your preferred way of being reached. Your preferences are discussed with you when your listing paperwork is signed. Many people like being able to confirm appointments via text messages, but some prefer phone or email.  Here is the inside scoop on Showing Time.

-       The company is not based in our area (and they may say our office name wrong J) and to be quite honest, they have very limited knowledge about the overall real estate process and are more like a call center.

-       They are best at confirming and denying showings so if you need to try and reschedule a showing or you simply feel like you need to call our office to help arrange a showing, PLEASE do so.

-       They will continue to call or text you to request showings even after you have an accepted offer. Please contact your agent directly if you want to stop showings instead of just denying showings. There is a proper timeline and process that we recommend.

-       If you are going out of town for a while, you can call the showing line and tell them the dates you will be out of town and update the showing instructions.(For example: you are okay with your home being shown at any time (i.e. 'go & show') between the 5-10th of the month. Then you can leave town without worrying about checking your phone for showing requests while you are gone.)

-       There is a Supra lock box on or near your front door. Only licensed REALTORS® have access to open that box. The lock box cannot be opened before 8am after or 9pm, so you should always feel safe in your home.

 

What to expect:

-       The showing request will most likely be made a day prior and will be for a one hour allotted window of time. (For example: an agent is requesting to view your home tomorrow from 2-3pm.)  You are expected to be gone for all showings.

-       At some point, an agent may arrive early or later than the hour requested. This will be annoying to you - I know, I've sold my house a couple of times too. Please keep in mind that most agents are showing multiple homes to the same buyer in a 4-5 hour time period. They do their best to estimate when they will get to each listing and how long the buyer will need to tour it. However, changes to their schedules do occur and you should be prepared in case a showing agent is running early or late.

-       We recommend that you have your home ready to show and are out of the home at least 15 minutes before the scheduled time frame.  Also, don't be surprised if they are still there when you come home...just drive around the block a couple of times until they are gone.

-       You may also experience a 'no show'. You will get your home in perfect showing condition and 10 minutes after you leave the house with all the lights on and fresh flowers in place you will get a call that it was cancelled. Or you will return after the presumed showing and no one will have been there. It happens. It sucks. That is all I can say. Buyers cancel last minute, people get stuck in traffic, kids get sick, or sometimes it is as annoying as they drove up to your house, didn't like the color of the trim and decided not to tour it. This frustration is part of the selling process and it is better to laugh then cry.

-       Don't get locked out of your home!  People are walking through your home. They are turning the lights on and off, they are walking out the back door to check out the yard, and they are looking in your garage. It is very important that you leave notes for the showing agents on doors that you have specific instructions for (like the door from the garage to the home). If you always use that door when you come home and you don't want it locked, please tape a small note above the doorknob that says, "Please don't lock this door." Or better yet, keep a key with you for all doors so you are never locked out of your own home! The same goes for turning lights on and off. If you want the agent to leave the lights on as they go through the home or turn them off, just leave a nice note like "Please leave the lights on" if you know there is another showing scheduled later in the day.

 

Showing your home:

You need to present your home in the best possible way for every single showing.

  • In the kitchen, you'll want to make sure that all of your dirty dishes are washed & put away, clear off the counters, and sweep/mop the floor.
  • For bathrooms, clean the sinks, put the toilet lids down, pull the shower curtain across the stall, and straighten/freshen the towels.
  • Around the rest of the home, a quick vacuum will be needed, make the beds, and hide the clutter.
  • Please leave any marketing materials out on the dining room table or on the kitchen counter!
  • Don't spray the home with air fresheners, use plug-ins or light smelly candles. Buyers think you are trying to cover something up and some people have bad reactions to heavy scents. It isn't worth the risk.
  • Before you leave for the showing, turn on all lights and open the blinds and curtains.
  • Try to remember that a buyer's first impression is curb appeal. Make sure the lawn is beautiful, take some time with your landscaping, and get some fresh flowers in a pot at the door. If it is winter, please remember to shovel all snow from the walkways and lay down ice melt to prevent slipping accidents. Get a new WELCOME mat at your front door. The buyers will be hanging out at the front door for a bit while the agent gets the key and unlocks the door, so make it a good first impression.

Continually getting your home ready for showings (sometimes with very little notice), can get frustrating after a while. Try to keep your spirits up and know that the right buyer is out there and just hasn't seen your home yet!  We will continue our marketing efforts and keep an eye on the market conditions to make sure you don't miss out on any exposure opportunities to potential buyers.

 

Feedback from the Buyers/Agents:

-     How did the showing go? What did the buyers think? I know you want to know right away and we promise to get you information as quickly as we get it. Once the showing occurs there is an automatic survey that we created that is emailed to the Buyer's Agent. It usually takes 24-48 hours to receive feedback. Please remember that the agent might have shown 15 homes in a day and might need some time to get through all the feedback while they are also getting answers to their Buyer's questions and potentially preparing an offer.

-     Bad feedback happens. We will report all feedback we get to you and there might be some feedback that you don't like. Keep in mind that many agents are simply reporting the negative feedback and they don't have the time to point out all the good things about the home. Also keep in mind that there are things you can control and things you can't control. Only focus on what you CAN control.

  • You can't control the location.
  • You can control the clutter and the cleanliness.
  • You can't control the layout.
  • You can control the condition. Touch up paint, a new water heater, etc.

The things you can't control, like if the buyer wants a master bathroom, you have to let go of. But if over time you keep getting showings and negative or just OK feedback then you have to realize that the negative factors that you can't control need to be balanced by the price. If you are the only home without a large backyard and many of the other homes in that price range are similar to yours but with a bigger back yard or with a 2 car garage, then you need to adjust your price down to make up for that.

 

Monthly Listing Reports and Follow Up:

-     After 3-4 weeks of your home being on the market you will receive a Listing Report that summarizes the showing activity and marketing activity of your home. You will also receive updated information on what is going on in your area and/or your price range.

-     You and I will discuss a marketing & pricing plan when we list the home. After a couple of weeks of showings, you might start thinking differently about the process. You and your spouse/partner may have a couple of conversations and decide you want to change the original plan. It is important to keep me in the communication loop. I will update you on what's going on and I need you to update me on where you are at. Sometimes the motivation level goes way up and sometimes it goes down. This is very important for me to know so I am on the same page as you and are reaching for the same goal.

And REMEMBER...we are here to help, so please call us if you have a question or concern.