Accompanied Showings in Real Estate Do Not Sell Homes

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Executive Realty 91362

ORIGINAL SOURCE: Holliston MA Real Estate


In the Metrowest Massachusetts area where I am located it is pretty rare to see an accompanied showing. In towards Boston it becomes much more common place. Some areas around the country have them and others don’t.

Why? Who knows but more than likely it has to do with tradition. I am glad the policy has never caught on in my neck of the woods.

Frankly an accompanied showing is a waste of a listing agents time and does nothing to facilitate a sale.

There is a long standing misconception amongst some folks that Realtors “sell homes”. Folks I have rarely ever “sold” a home in this sense of the word to anyone. Homes are an emotional purchase. They are not something a Realtor talks  somebody into buying. Realtors can be guides and give advice but homes sell themselves. Sometimes when a buyer walks into a home you can just feel that it is perfect for them and they will end up purchasing the place. This happens because of human emotion and attachment. It has very little to do with a sales pitch.

In twenty four years I have never talked someone into buying a home! This is where some sellers have misguided thoughts about the purpose of an accompanied showing. For some reason people think if a buyer does not notice some feature about the home and it’s  not pointed out,  it would cause the sale not to happen. Sorry this is not the case. Pointing out the nitty gritty is not a difference maker to most buyers.

The fancy security system, beveled edges on the the granite counters, and cherry inlay on the dining room floor will not be the reason for someone buying a home. Even in million dollar homes that have every conceivable feature and amenity it is not a listing agent waving a red flag in front of a buyers face that is going to seal the deal. Emotion sells, people do not at least not in Real Estate.

While the need for accompanied showings is rare they can actually be a detriment to the seller for a number of reasons. We use lock boxes here in Massachusetts for a reason! A lock box allows a Realtor to easily gain access to a property without hindrance.

When a seller requires an accompanied showing they are now adding the possibility of scheduling conflicts.


I for one am a very busy Realtor. If I have to try and coordinate my schedule with another Realtors, the possibility exists there will be a missed showing for the seller. A missed showing is a missed opportunity!

There have been times over the years where I have not been able to work my schedule around another agents and the buyer ended up purchasing something else before ever rescheduling to see the missed home.

If more Realtors educated their clients on why accompanied showings are a big mistake, instead of worrying that they won’t get the listing without complying with the sellers demands, sellers would much better off.

I for one would love it if sellers actually placed a recorder in their home to hear what some listing agents say as buyers are walking from room to room.  I am not kidding! Things like “here is the kitchen”. Really? If there was not a dishwasher, stove and cabinets I never would have known. Thanks for being here to guide me. This may sound funny but I am being completely serious. There is no value in this.

I know for a fact based on my experience that most buyers and their Realtors do not want a listing agent at a showing.

It creates an uncomfortable atmosphere where the buyer can not speak freely about the property with their agent.  The situation can actually  become unbearable if the listing agent is giving a hard sell. Buyers absolutely hate this. It is actually only slightly better than the seller being there and following you around like a puppy dog.

As a great compromise to some sellers who really want an accompanied showing, I suggest it is done if there is a 2nd showing and only if the buyer does not mind. A second showing of course is an indicator that there could be more than just casual interest. The interest level can usually be confirmed by speaking with the buyers agent. Some buyers at this point may not have a problem with the listing agent being there especially if they have some unanswered questions.

Remember Real Estate is a numbers game. Don’t let an accompanied showing get in the way of selling your home.

Related Real Estate Articles:

How NOT to sell a Massachusetts home

Real Estate pricing ending in 900 may or may not be a good idea

Real Estate commissions agent bonus and unethical Realtors

Handling offers when selling a home


About the Author: The above Real Estate information on accompanied showings in Real Estate do not sell homes was provided by BillRE/MAX Executive Realty Metrowest Massachusetts Gassett, a Nationally recognized leader in his field. Bill can be reached via email at or by phone at 508-435-5356.

Have a home to sell in Metrowest Mass? I have a passion for Real Estate and love to share my marketing expertise!

For Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate and homes see Massachusetts Real Estate. Want to have MLS access to beat other buyers to your dream home? Sign up with no obligation at my MLS Property Finder Site.

I service the following towns in and around Metrowest Massachusetts: Hopkinton, Milford, Upton, Southboro, Westboro, Ashland, Holliston, Mendon, Northboro, Shrewsbury, Hopedale, Medway, Grafton, Northbridge, Uxbridge, Franklin, Framingham and Douglas MA.

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Tammie White, Broker
Franklin Homes Realty LLC - Franklin, TN
Franklin TN Homes for Sale

The only time we might have accompanied showings is if it's a celebrity home or a mult-million dollar property.  Otherwise, you don't see it here.  Thank goodness.

Apr 27, 2010 03:53 PM #82
Cheryl Ritchie
RE/MAX Leading Edge - Huntingtown, MD
Southern Maryland 301-980-7566

Just about the time the Seller finishes mentioning how great their pool is , you as the agent have just a few moments to compose a statement to the Buyer on what techniques they can use to remove the pool for their pool adverse family.

Apr 27, 2010 04:24 PM #83
Debe Maxwell, CRS | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

The scheduling is what gets me--it's difficult enough to schedule the sellers, buyers and buyer's agent but, to add me to the mix is a challange.  I have one that requires me to accompany the buyers and their agent for showings and they always seem to go well but, on occasion, the buyer will just zip through the home.  I know it's because I'm there--they don't feel free to talk freely with their agent and often don't know what to say to me.  I make them as comfortable as possible and those that are truly uncomfortable are few and far between.  1 out of 27 of mine requires me to be there and I'm thankful that's it for now!  Again, it's the scheduling that is the tough part for me--even with just the one.

Apr 27, 2010 05:38 PM #84
Rita Fong
RE/MAX REAL ESTATE TODAY, Executive Broker 901-488-9590 - Marion, AR
Realtor - Marion Arkansas Homes for Sale

Bill, I can't agree with you more.  It is very seldom in our market for a seller to ask the listing agent to be present during showings.  Sellers who think it is the agent's fault not selling the house need to be educated, I always believe the house sells itself, the more we "brag" about the house, the more it turns buyer away.  People don't like to be told what to buy, the more you do that, the more they delete that house off from their list.

Apr 28, 2010 04:02 AM #85
Ellie McIntire
Ellicott City Clarksville Howard County Maryland Real Estate - Ellicott City, MD
Luxury service in Howard County & Catonsville

Great post. I think that Greg Nino would not have been quite so polite. LOL.

Apr 28, 2010 05:26 AM #86
Kristen Wheatley
Better Homes & Gardens | The Masiello Group - Brunswick, ME
Supporting Success - Best Job in the World!

So incredibly true!  I actually saw a TV news segment from one the major networks a couple of months ago telling sellers to BE SURE to be at all showings!  Argh!  They even said "no one can sell your home like you can."  I can't imagine what numnut told them that little tidbit.

Apr 28, 2010 06:03 AM #87
Renée Donohue
Savvy Home Strategies Realty, LLC-REALTOR®-Estate-Probate - Las Vegas, NV
Las Vegas Real Estate Broker -

Agents here don't do that anymore but agents here don't answer questions or their phones or emails anymore!  THEY are not too busy, however, to meet me at the property for a BPO:

LA:  Here are the comps

ME:  I already pulled them

LA:  Well did you see the one down the street sold for xxx

ME:  (thinking probably half the size, half the price over 6 months ago and right a good percentage of the time) I already pulled the comps

LA:  I am just trying to "help" you do your job and I would appreciate it if you "helped" me get this closed

ME:  I do 100-150 of these a month with no help, thank you!

It's funny what agents in my market will go out of their way for these days and what they won't.

Apr 28, 2010 08:04 AM #88
Bill Gassett
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Hopkinton, MA
Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate

Thanks again everyone for sharing all your thoughts and comments!

Kristen - That sounds like someone trying to stir the pot.

Renee - why are Realtors not performing everyday services?

Apr 28, 2010 09:39 AM #89
John Howard
Century 21 LeMac Realty - Mountain Home, AR
GRI, Mountain Home, Arkansas 870-404-3614

In 24 years have only been accompanied on commercial properties....Have a Great Week!

Apr 28, 2010 10:05 AM #90
Danny Batsalkin
Keller Williams Realty - Beverly Hills - Beverly Hills, CA
Los Angeles Real Estate | 310.432.5706


The only reason listing agents want to accompany showings where there is a buyer's agent is because the listing agent doesn't have anything else to do.  If the listing agent was concentrating on income producing activities, they wouldn't have any interest in being at the showing.

-- Danny

Apr 28, 2010 02:00 PM #91
LLoyd Nichols
Premier Florida Realty of SWFL - Fort Myers, FL
SW Florida Homes

Most showings that require the listing agent's presence are high end homes with high end furniture and personal items and the Seller is no doubt requiring his or her agent to be there.

Apr 28, 2010 02:26 PM #92
Lori Liveston
Virtual Homes, Real Estate - Waltham, MA

Bill - Great post.  I don't understand the value in an accompanied showing but I think some sellers think the listing agent is working harder for them when they commit to being present for every showing.  It doesn't work.  I only see this when showing in Boston but it turned off my clients when a particularly enthusiastic listing agent spent 45 minutes explaining all the features of a STUDIO APARTMENT.  Here's the kitchen... and on the other side of the counter is the living room... then 5 feet beyond that is the bedroom... 

Apr 28, 2010 03:50 PM #93
Pam Dent
Gayle Harvey Real Estate, Inc. - Charlottesville, VA
REALTOR® - Charlottesville Virginia Homes / Horse

Bill - Thank goodness this is something that we rarely see in my market.  Everynow and then it is required that the listing agent be present in a very hight end estate property.

May 03, 2010 03:27 PM #94
J. Philip Faranda
J. Philip Faranda (J. Philip R.E. LLC) Westchester County NY - Briarcliff Manor, NY

They accompany in Manhattan, because there are no lock boxes and the owners have been led to expect it. You seldom see it in the suburbs for all of the reasons discussed. 

I for one wish Manhattan would get with it and adopt lockboxes. I don't need someone walking me through a 900 square foot apartment and telling me where the kitchen is. 


May 04, 2010 02:05 AM #95
Gail Robinson
William Raveis Real Estate - Southport, CT
CRS, GRI, e-PRO Fairfield County, CT

In our market listing agents are normally only present at high end properties, and then it's helpful to have the listing agent there as the properties are so complex that buyers often have many questions that the buyer agent can't answer.  I do have to show a listing today (not high end) where the agent AND the owner will be present.  Now that's a real turnoff for the buyer.  it's not a complicated home or a high end home, absolutely no reason for this circus.


May 15, 2010 02:13 AM #96
Fred Carver Personal Real Estate Corporation
RE/MAX Camosun Victoria BC Real Estate - Victoria, BC
Accredited Real Estate Consultant

Hi Bill...Congratulations on this Post being featured. I cannot think of a single reason the Listing Agent should insist on being there, the potential for a conflict is too great. High end Realtors do this here, not sure what the benefit is, the listing agents always want me to work around their schedule and seemed rushed when they arrive, all I'm sure because they have doubled their work load..Homes Sell Homes.

Recently a Listing agent here lost a sale, by not being able to get my Buyer back into a home for a second viewing, the same day before she headed home, due to flight arrangements. And the Listing agent sat in the house while we were there, what's that all about, my Buyer felt like she was imposing on his time. I simply see it as a negative action when selling any type of Real Estate.

May 15, 2010 03:40 AM #97
Bill Gassett
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Hopkinton, MA
Metrowest Massachusetts Real Estate

Gail I here that a lot about expensive homes being more complicated. I just don't see why they are?

Fred I am with you for the mere fact that the listing agents presence does not change the fact of whether the buyer is going to like the home or not.

May 15, 2010 04:51 AM #98
Leslie Helm
Tennessee Recreational Properties - Jamestown, TN
Real Estate For Trail Riders

Hi, Bill. It is common practice here for listing agents to be present at showings. They are there with the doors open and the lights on. The good ones, that is. Others rush up after you've been standing around for a few minutes and fumble to get the door get the picture Then there are the tenth-rate agents who enjoy making you wait without a call or even an apology when they do arrive...just because they can.

It is so much easier when a house is on a lockbox and you don't have to try to work around a schedule. I leave a folder in my unoccupied listings with info such as plat with the property colored in, septic permit, restrictions so that the agent will have the wherewithal to answer questions.

This area is a destination for trail riders and, when the other agent is from out of the area or does not ride, they cannot answer the big question, "WHERE ARE THE TRAILS?" Then they are happy to have the listing agent present!

May 17, 2010 01:11 AM #99
Thomas J. Nelson, Realtor, ePRO, CRS, RCS-D
Big Block Realty 858.232.8722 - La Jolla, CA
& Host of Postcards From Success Podcast

I'd have to agree when it comes to the fact that not all agents are skilled at doing them properly, but some clients and some HOA buildings require them to accompanied. Some agents actually do them well and they do cover a lot of good info. No lockbox policy in some HOA's here make them mandatory too. They are a pain when the listing is out of area, but typically they are higher dollar listings, so the pain is compensated. I'd say when you hit the luxury market in CA, you'll find most are accompanied. 

Mar 03, 2017 11:47 PM #100
Nathan Gesner
American West Realty & Management - Cody, WY
Broker / Property Manager

Fortunately, I have not had to deal with one, Bill Gassett . It makes sense for a commercial building, farm/ranch, or a unique property that requires someone with knowledge to point out important facts, but I think most buyers can find the kitchen, count the bathrooms, and see there is a tire swing in the back yard!

Mar 04, 2017 05:28 AM #101
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