My House, My Rules

Real Estate Agent with Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate | Gary Greene 0512346

I remember my parents saying "My House, My Rules" a lot when I was a kid. It was their common response to my questions of "why can't I eat in the living room?" and "why can't I put my feet on the coffee table?" and "why do I have to take off my boots by the back door?"

shoesThe other day when I was out with clients showing homes in Spring Texas, I felt as if I had been transported back to my childhood. But this time instead of my parents it was the sellers saying "My House, My Rules". The sellers didn't say exactly that but it was pretty darn close. As they said "Take off your shoes at the front door." My clients responded like a couple of rebellious teenagers and refused to take off their shoes.

What the sellers had forgotten was their house is on the real estate market. And when your house is on the market, your house is no longer your house. It is a product. A product that you are wanting to sell. And if you want to sell that product you need be able to make buyers see themselves as owners of that product. The best way to do this is to make them feel comfortable viewing it.These sellers did the exact opposite. As my buyers immediately felt uncomfortable viewing the house.

Maybe its the sellers customs to take off your shoes upon entering a home or maybe they just had the carpets cleaned. Both are good and understandable reasons as to why the sellers wanted us take of our shoes.

But I am sorry Mr. and Mrs. Seller, when your house is on the Spring Texas real estate market it is NOT about you. Its about my buyers and about making them feel comfortable in your home. When my buyers are uncomfortable, we head to the next house on our list to view. Buyers have plenty of houses to choose from. Don't eliminate your house from their list by saying "My House, My Rules".

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Donna Galinsky
Allen Tate Company - Cornelius, NC
Make Lake Norman Your Home!

Funny you should mention about the shoes.

I was showing a house a few weeks ago to an Italian gentleman. The rule was take off your shoes t show the house.

He did, but he made it known that he was extremely uncomfortable with it. He told us afterwards that even though he might have liked the house, it made such a bad impression that it turned him off the house,.

Aug 08, 2010 05:28 AM
Jill Wente
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate | Gary Greene - Spring, TX
Realtor, CRS, MCNE, CHMS

Exactly, Donna.  Buyers are uncomfortable taking off their shoes in places they are not familiar with.  I think it makes some buyers think of going through the security line at the airport.

Aug 08, 2010 05:32 AM
Margaret Goss
@Properties - Winnetka, IL
Chicago's North Shore & Winnetka Real Estate

I've never had a problem with this - in our area we keep medical booties in a basket in most houses.  It's a hassle sometimes, but no one has ever been put out.

Aug 08, 2010 05:33 AM
Elizabeth Bolton
RE/MAX Destiny Real Estate Cambridge, MA - Cambridge, MA
Cambridge MA Realtor

Hi Jill ~ Shoes-off is becoming a more popular custom in my area. I always encourage sellers to give up the practice while their property is on the market. Making buyers uncomfortable is not a smart move when you're trying to sell your place.


Aug 08, 2010 04:21 PM
Marchel Peterson
Results Realty - Spring, TX
Spring TX Real Estate E-Pro

Jill, I have seen those signs also and maybe half the time my buyers will take their shoes off.

Aug 25, 2010 04:04 PM
Jill Wente
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate | Gary Greene - Spring, TX
Realtor, CRS, MCNE, CHMS

Marchel, You don't want to give buyers reasons NOT to buy your home. You want to give them reasons to buy your home. Making buyers feel comfortable in your home is one simple thing you can do.

Aug 26, 2010 01:16 AM