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Tips for Living With Your Home On The Market

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Executive Realty, Al and Cal Realty Group S-96414

Tips for Living With Your Home On The Market

Do you have your home on the market or are you thinking of it?    If so, it will come as no surprise to you that you will have you home exposed to the world in living color!   life in a fishbowl

It might be somewhat like living in a fishbowl.   Which is exactly what you want!  

Having your home exposed to as many potential buyers as possible will bring you the highest possible price in the shortest amount of time.  

Your job is to choose the Realtor who can and will expose your home correctly in as many places as possible.    Once you do, your home will be presented with not only text, but color views of each and every nook and cranny of your home.  It will likely include mapping and video.  Your agent might even suggest opening  your doors for a public open house or at least an agents preview.  

Don't be alarmed!   It is all a part of merchandising.   One can't make a decision on a home that they can't see.       

So I have heard it's a little like living in a fishbowl.  

How to Minimize the Discomfort?

There are a couple of things you can do to make this process easier.   

  • Stage it.    Again, think merchandising.    This might be a little inconvenient.  Remember, it is not a reflection on how you live or decorate, but meant to take the purchaser in the direction of moving themselves in.
  • Best foot forward.   Okay, it's showtime!   You want your home to look it's best as soon as it hits the market.   Don't wait for a later time for the photos.   Almost all buyers will see your home on line before they visit in person.  This is good news as it weeds out the looky loos.   At the same time you wouldn't want to miss that first time opportunity to capture the hearts of that potential buyer with an incomplete marketing opportunity.    It is, in my opinion a mistake to begin marketing halfway with the thoughts of catching up later.  Defer to your Realtors expertise on what is important to accomplish before hitting the market full force.
  • Strategy.   Defer and confer with your agent regarding the best strategy for your home.  Be cognizant of the norm in the area.  Do buyers attend open houses?   If so, it might be that your first showings start at an open house.   This is just an example, but there could be ways to get the first looks through with as little disruption to you as possible. 
  • Price it right.   If you do this, your home will sell in a reasonable amount of time, minimizing your time on the market.   You get the drift.   Different for different homes in different market places.  
  • Be Prepared.  I'm not talking here about the physical presentation.   People will ask all kinds of questions.  They may seem prying.  The may seem personal.   They may seem ridiculous.    Regardless.   Be prepared on your agents advice to answer.  We generally regard these questions, as "buying questions".   Meaning, that anyone who is not interested will not bother with questions.   So when that buyer asks what your heating bill was last year... we know it is subjective, but it is something they feel they need to have answered in order to move forward. 
  • Leave the House.  You do not want to be in the house while a potential buyer and their agent walk through.   For many reasons including they won't linger and poke around.  They need to do that in order to make a buying decision.  But from the Sellers point of view, that lingering and poking is very unsettling.    You don't need it.  Leave the showing to the professionals. 
  • Communication.   This is a two way thing here.  If you have any concerns after or before a showing, bring them to the attention of your agent!!   Do not let something fester.   Also,a good agent will communicate with you to let you know to the best of their ability how the showing went.  Most times, they will not know the buyers particulars.   Where they work, how old they are, etc, but they can let you know if there is possible interest, or any other thing pertinent to the showing.   
  • Breathe!   Try to relax.  We know that you have to live here too.   There is a balance between living "show ready" and having a life.   Try to minimize the stress by thinking before hand where you will stash things and what your routine will be for showings.  It is unlikely these days that someone will ask for a last minute showing.   You will have plenty of time to get your home ready and get out.
  • Realistic Expectations.   Sometimes people expect that the first person that walks through the door is the "one".   That is not usually the case, although that is the goal.    Expect that you might have several buyers through.   The more the better.   I kind of like to think of that old saying about kissing a lot of toads before you find the prince.  I hope you have heard that before!   

Please know, that your Realtor knows how hard it is to have your home on the market and how emotional it is to having people walk through it.     She / He will try as hard as possible to make it as comfortable for you as possible.  

Life In The Fishbowl.....

The whole thing might feel a bit disconcerting.   

But, if you are feeling that way, I would venture to say that your Realtor is doing a great job!


Are you thinking of putting your home on the market?   Put my 25 years of real estate experience to work for you.   

I can be reached at 508-494-9061 or email at Cal@AlandCal.com

Fred Griffin Florida Real Estate
Fred Griffin Real Estate - Tallahassee, FL
Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

"I kind of like to think of that old saying about kissing a lot of toads before you find the prince."

   Great line, Carol-Ann!  

Oct 17, 2012 11:59 AM
Ed Silva, 203-206-0754
Mapleridge Realty, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

Carol Ann, selling a house has so many different stresses and having to leave and allow strangers to walk and snoop is not easy. A well deserved feature

Oct 17, 2012 12:10 PM
Carol-Ann Palmieri
RE/MAX Executive Realty, Al and Cal Realty Group - Franklin, MA
"Cal" the Real Estate Gal

Hi Christiansen Team.   Thank you and after going through it myself, I agree.   :) 


Thank you Brenda girl! 


Hi Joan.  Thank you.


Hi Rob.  I wouldn't be surprised if many do just that.   Thanks.


Hi Dan.   That is kind and I think the way most of us feel.   Thanks.


Hi Ginny.  Kids do come with a lot of stuff!   LOL.  Thanks.


Hi Bob.   Yes, and we all including Realtor sellers think our homes will go immediately to the first buyer in even though, we really know better.  Thank you.


Thank you all for checking out and weighing in on this blog.   Your comments are appreciated!!



Oct 17, 2012 12:24 PM
Carie Shapiro
North Shore Suburbs & Chicago Real Estate - Evanston, IL

Selling a home is like pulling off a Band Aid ... the quicker you do it the less it hurts.  I'm sure nobody likes the feeling of living in a property that is for sale at the same time.  But, hopefully, the more positive steps taken from the start will make the process easier and the faster it will sell.

Oct 17, 2012 12:25 PM
Christine Smith
Buyers Brokers Only LLC - www.BuyersBrokersOnly.com - Canton, MA
Exclusive Buyer Agent & Attorney, Canton, MA

Carol Ann....There are so many Sellers out there that should have taken this advice before they put their house on the market!

Oct 17, 2012 12:26 PM
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Burlington, MA
Metro Boston Homes For Sale

Carol Ann, congratulation on well deserved feature post.

You have described it very nicely - how it feels when you put your home on market. I am likely to cut-n-paste part of your post for my new listing...

Oct 17, 2012 12:31 PM
Carol-Ann Palmieri
RE/MAX Executive Realty, Al and Cal Realty Group - Franklin, MA
"Cal" the Real Estate Gal

Hi Vince.   After going through it once you've got it covered.   Good luck with the sale!


Hi Anita.   Thank you for reading and hitting the S.  


Hi Gary.  That is a good one for the list and getting rid of clutter will help with stress too. 


Thanks Chuck.


Hi Wendy.  That last line has me laughing.   True.


Thanks Fred.   Not like I know from experience or anything like that!  :)


Hi Ed.  I know, and for some so much harder than others.   Thank you.


Thank  you all for taking the time to read and weigh in.   Appreciate your thoughts. 

Oct 17, 2012 12:31 PM
Carol-Ann Palmieri
RE/MAX Executive Realty, Al and Cal Realty Group - Franklin, MA
"Cal" the Real Estate Gal

Hi Carie.   Your comment brings me back to having my mother rip those band aids off so fast your head would spin.  Thanks for the trip down memory lane!  


Hi Christine.   As a buyers agent, I am sure you have seen it all!   


Hi Praful.    I know the process is very stressful.  There are so many moving parts.   


Thanks guys for taking a look and taking the time to weigh in.    I appreciate your thoughts and comments.  

Oct 17, 2012 12:37 PM
Evelyn Kennedy
Alain Pinel Realtors - Alameda, CA
Alameda, Real Estate, Alameda, CA

Carol Ann:

This is such a good post, I am going to print it for my clients who are selling their home.  Although I have given them the same information, having another source provide the information will help them adjust to the reality of selling their home.

Oct 17, 2012 01:22 PM
MichelleCherie Carr Crowe .Just Call. 408-252-8900
Get Results Team...Just Call (408) 252-8900! . DRE #00901962 . Licensed to Sell since 1985 . Altas Realty - San Jose, CA
Family Helping Families Buy & Sell Homes 40+ Years

Love It! Thanks for passing on those Tips for Living With Your Home On The Market.

Oct 17, 2012 03:06 PM
Jon Karlen
Finish Line Realty - Louisville Ky Real Estate - Metropolitan Service Area - Louisville, KY
Louisville Kentucky real estate - Metro Area

Great list for anyone that selling their home!

Oct 17, 2012 05:33 PM
Michael Setunsky
Woodbridge, VA
Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA

Carol Ann, great list of tips for homeowners when they are selling. It really does become a fish bowl.

Oct 17, 2012 11:14 PM
Athina Boukas
Virginia Capital Realty - Richmond, VA
Certified Residential Specialist (CRS)

This is a very informative post, and one that I would love to re-blog.  I especially like the point about open houses.

Oct 17, 2012 11:50 PM
Svetlana Stolyarova
Local-n-Global Realty, Cleveland and International Real Estate Solution - Mayfield Heights, OH
Local-n-Global Realty, Broker 216-548-4663

Excellent post! Giving this list to the sellers at the listing presentation and watching their reaction may definitely help the agent to define if the sellers are motivated or not. Will re-blog it with pleasure.

Oct 18, 2012 12:31 AM
Mel Ahrens, MBA, Kelly Right Real Estate
Kelly Right Real Estate - Hood River, OR
Customized Choices for your Real Estate Needs

You are so right that it's hard to live in a home while it's for sale. Good tips here for handling it. It's tough to keep a home perfectly staged while you're living there, especially if you have kids, but it's so worth it in the long run.


Oct 18, 2012 12:32 AM
Rosalind Nicholas
RE/MAX Condos Plus Corporation, Brokerage - Toronto, ON
Toronto Condo Real Estate Agent, Toronto ON

Carol Ann thank you for this ‘tips list’. Some Sellers get some of these points and not the others. It is not so easy, with young kids in the house.

Oct 18, 2012 01:07 AM
Shane Barker
Amerifirst Financial, INC. - Salt Lake City, UT

These are great things that I have not really given much thought, thanks for all the tips and info on this.

Oct 18, 2012 04:35 AM
Karen Feltman
Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, IA KW Legacy Group - Cedar Rapids, IA
Relocation Specialist in Cedar Rapids, Iowa
This is great way to explain the things that a potential seller may be feeling when they decide to put their home on the market. Great post!
Oct 18, 2012 04:37 AM
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Happily Retired - Franklin, MA
Previously Affiliated with The Todaro Team

Hi Carol Ann.... when I listed my house, I made everyone take off their shoes, even at the open house.... there were over 40 couples through that house the first day on the market and the pile of shoes was incredible.... there was a carpet on the hardwood next to the front door just for shoes....it was full...

Oct 18, 2012 05:32 AM
Sharon Parisi
United Real Estate Dallas - Dallas, TX
Dallas Homes

If the house shows well and the sellers follow your tips, their house should sooner, rather than later!

Oct 18, 2012 01:37 PM