Why Can't I Be Home For Showings?

Real Estate Agent with Samsel & Associates 0790808

When the phone call comes that an agent wants to show your house, you groan. You're tired, perhaps, or hungry. Your son has homework to do and you need to cook dinner. It's so terribly inconvenient.

There are lots of reasons your agent has suggested you not be home while prospective buyers are visiting.

First, the acts of buying and selling a home are so very personal and so filled with emotion that it's best if a buyer and seller not meet. For example, imagine if the buyer criticizes the way you decorated your house or complains that the rooms are too small. You probably would feel bad, and you might even feel resentful. If they later make an offer on the house, you're already prejudiced against them. Likewise, imagine hearing the buyer say how much they love the home but then when they put in an offer, it's insultingly low. Your feelings are hurt.In these situations, it's nearly impossible to separate emotion from business and negotiations can be more than a little tricky.

A second reason your agent has recommended you not be home is to help the buyers imagine the house as their own. If you're there, the buyers will think of the house as your home instead of as their own home. They're much less likely to make an offer.

Where can you go during showings?

  • When our house was for sale, we saved our errands for when we had to leave anyway. Got the grocery shopping done, picked up dry cleaning, returned library books.
  • Visit your friends. Especially if you've grown close with your neighbors, you'll want to spend some extra time with them before you leave.
  • If you children have homework to do, go to the library. 
  • Go to the park. This is a great option if you had to take your family dog with you.
  • Go to the mall. Window shop and buy a coffee.
  • Go to the movies. 
  • Scope out your new neighborhood. If you're not moving too far, take a trip and find your new cafe or deli.

Wherever you go, treat it as forced relaxation. Selling a home is stressful. Use this time to recharge your batteries.

Posted by




~ Wayne & Jean 

Union County, NJ - a great place to live and work!

If you're looking to buy or sell a property in Union County, call us at 908-917-4189 or email TeamZuhl@gmail.com.


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All opinions, information and data provided is deemed reliable but is subject to errors and omissions. Not intended to solicit other Brokers' clients. We cooperate with them fully. 


Re-Blogged 2 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Lenn Harley 10/12/2015 11:17 PM
  2. Roy Kelley 10/26/2015 06:00 PM
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Teri Pacitto
Compass - Westlake Village, CA
Real Estate, Your Style...Your Home...My Specialty

Sellers and pets always should be out during showings.  I often see sellers waiting until the buyer and agent shows up then they leave and that is also not a good situation.  It is inconvenient to stay away during showings however it can mean the difference in selling the house.  Great post. 

Oct 13, 2015 02:00 AM #19
Ed Silva
RE/MAX Professionals, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

Excellent post on dealing with reluctant to leave sellers that feel they can only sell the house if they are there.  Take a very long walk and just stay away from the house

Oct 13, 2015 02:01 AM #20
Joan Congilose
New Jersey Properties - Manalapan, NJ
Helping Sellers & Buyers

Great advice, I also appreciate it when they make an effort to take their pets with them too. The less distractions the better!

Oct 13, 2015 02:18 AM #21
Crystal Kilpatrick
Team Leader -Crystal Kilpatrick Group - Austin, TX
CHLMS,CNE, CRS - Austin & Central Texas Home Sales

Great advice Wayne and Jean Marie.  Always need  good suggestions on what to do during home showings.

Oct 13, 2015 02:38 AM #22
Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers
Haven Express @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty - Scottsdale, AZ
Serving Scottsdale, Phoenix and Maricopa County AZ

Wayne and Jean Marie Zuhl We don't "require" our Sellers to leave - we just point out the down side of being there and advise them to require the Buyer Agent to use the Supra lockbox to gain entry.

Oct 13, 2015 02:48 AM #23
Karen Feltman
Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, IA KW Legacy Group - Cedar Rapids, IA
Relocation Specialist in Cedar Rapids, Iowa

"Forced relaxation"  Love it!  So true though, selling a home is stressful.  Whether there are lots of showings or none, there is still stress involved.  Having a plan of what to do and where to go is key.

Oct 13, 2015 02:53 AM #24
Kat Palmiotti
406-270-3667, kat@thehousekat.com, Broker, Blackstone Realty Group - brokered by eXp Realty - Kalispell, MT
The House Kat

Another reason sellers should leave is so they don't inadvertently let any negotiation impacting tidbits slip, which is easy to do. 

Oct 13, 2015 04:48 AM #25
Chris Lima
Atlantic Shores Realty Expertise - Port St Lucie, FL
Local or Global-Allow me to open doors for you.

Sellers don't realize that they, in most cases, are not being helpful and actually, they are sometimes a hindrance.  Bless their hearts!  

Oct 13, 2015 05:32 AM #26
Nina Hollander
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Charlotte, NC
Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor

A great way to put it--forced relaxation! I've actually had people in the car who refused to go into a home when they sellers were there. I also remind my sellers to think about how they like for a home to not have sellers present when they look for themselves.

Oct 13, 2015 05:32 AM #27
Brigita McKelvie, Associate Broker
Cindy Stys Equestrian and Country Properties, Ltd. - Lehigh Valley, PA
The Broker with horse sense and no horsing around

Wayne & Jean,

Some really good sugestions for the Sellers on how to spend the time away during showings.


Oct 13, 2015 09:53 PM #28
Richard Robibero, e-Pro, ABR, SRS
Panorama R.E. Limited - Toronto, ON
Selling Your Home as if it were My Own!

It's tough. You are kicking people out of their own house but it is a necessary evil to get the home sold.

Oct 13, 2015 10:56 PM #29
Andrew Mooers | 207.532.6573
Northern Maine Real Estate-Aroostook County Broker

Have had farm owners stay and talk and it helps the sale. Like the older couple nice as punch! You can use them to the advantage!

Oct 14, 2015 04:18 AM #30
Ryan Huggins - Thousand Oaks, CA
https://HugginsHomes.com - Thousand Oaks, CA
Residential Real Estate and Investment Properties

Amen!  I've seen more potential deals killed by well intentioned sellers than deals made.

Oct 14, 2015 06:26 AM #31
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

This is very good advice for home sellers. 

They will be in good hands when they select you as their listing agent.

Oct 14, 2015 08:02 AM #32
Becca Rasmussen
HomeSmart Cherry Creek - Highlands Ranch, CO

Good advice for sellers! When we were home shopping in 2006, two of the homes we toured contained an unexpected surprise - the homeowner.

The first house was just as weird as its owner, odd layout, dank spaces (hard to do in a dry climate!), and the owner hunched in a chair at a desk watching a monitor showing the dozen security cameras he had set up inside and out. I remember this visit fondly? every time I'm adjusting our own security cameras.  What really sticks with me though is that had the house been otherwise 100% perfect we'd've never offered on it because of the weird feeling rolling off the owner. 

The other was a beautiful house, just down the street and around the corner from the one we did buy. The husband and wife were present for the showing, sitting at the kitchen island and glaring. I don't think we even bothered to view the upstairs on that one. This one comes to mind every time we walk past that street when taking our dogs for a walk. I often wonder how many buyers they chased off, and if they really just didn't want to sell.

Happily though, I now have first-hand anecdotes to pull from when I have a seller who wants to stay during an open house or showing and I need to encourage them no to do so.

Oct 14, 2015 11:34 AM #33
Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

Wayne & Jean, congratulations on the feature, this was a great post for homeowners with their home on the market.

Oct 15, 2015 10:26 AM #34
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Wayne and jean -  for next it would be go find the nearest Starbucks.

Oct 16, 2015 02:14 AM #35
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

Wayne and Jean Marie Zuhl very nice way to explain sellers why they should not be at home during showings. 'Time for Relaxation'! 

Oct 16, 2015 02:59 PM #36
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Wayne and Jean Marie Zuhl 

Congratulations on a well deserved feature. This is a tough topic, and despite explaining the issues to sellers some don't seem to realize the risk of remaining in the home. I definitely prefer touring a home with clients without the sellers or tenants. That said, when they are there it's a great opportunity for questions!


Oct 19, 2015 01:55 PM #37
1~Judi Barrett
Integrity Real Estate Services 118 SE AVE N, Idabel, OK 74745 - Idabel, OK
BS Ed, Integrity Real Estate Services -IDABEL OK

Great explanation on why the seller needs to leave when the home is shown!  

Oct 26, 2015 09:01 PM #38
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