Can I Use The Sellers Bathroom When Viewing Their Home?

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Compass, formerly RE/MAX WHP 0524642

"Can I use their bathroom?" The answer from me has always been YES. You can use the home sellers toilet. Home sellers should be prepared for buyers, their agents, the home inspector, the appraiser and just about ANYONE else who enters the home to "use the bathroom."

Home sellers should leave adequate toiletries for their 'guests.' The only time I've ever said no was when the home was in foreclosure and the water was turned off. Then you should go elsewhere. Obviously.

It's a necessary issue to deal with when you sell your  home.



Posted by


Greg Nino
, Houston area Realtor®.
Helping residential buyers, sellers and tenants 7 days a week.
Available @ 832-298-8555 

RE/MAX Compass (Formerly RE/MAX WHP)




The information contained in this blog is believed to be reliable and while every effort is made to assure that the information is as accurate as possible, the author of this blog, and its comments disclaim any implied warranty or representation about it's accuracy, completeness or appropriateness for any particular purpose. All information is copywritten and the property of Greg Nino.  






Re-Blogged 2 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Morris Real Estate Marketing Group 09/05/2015 05:00 AM
  2. Dale Taylor 11/23/2016 12:09 AM
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Lloyd Binen
Certified Realty Services - Saratoga, CA
Silicon Valley Realtor since 1976; 408-373-4411

Before going turn on a sink faucet to be sure the water hasn't been turned off, and that there's toilet paper.   And flush when finished.  I had a seller call me to complain that someone left a prize for her in the toilet.  Nice.

Ask for permission if the seller is home and leave the bathroom cleaner than you found it.

Sep 03, 2015 06:30 AM #20
Liane Thomas -Top Listing Agent
BROKER Allison James Estates & Homes BRE 01885684 - Corona, CA
Bringing you Home!

Yes, after verifying the water is on. I carry TP and antibacterial wipes in my car just in case my clients are desperate. Sometimes kids just can't hold it.

Sep 03, 2015 07:33 AM #21
Ann Wilkins
Golden Gate Sotheby's International Realty - Oakland, CA
Oakland, Berkeley, Piedmont CA

Wow - I have so  many good stories about the bathroom use at open houses.  Yes, I allow people to use the bathrooms  cause when you got to got to go!

Sep 03, 2015 07:59 AM #22
Travis "the SOLD man" Parker; Associate Broker
Team Linda Simmons, Enterprise, AL 36330 - Enterprise, AL
email: / cell: 334-494-7846

I like the esteemed Margaret Rome's answer - "checking out the plumbing"....

Sep 03, 2015 08:08 AM #23
Christi Farrington
Dagny's Real Estate - Wilton, CT
~ Your representative in Fairfield County, CT

Good post, Greg.  A question that I am asked repeatedly by my buyers.  Unless the water has been turned off, the answer is always 'yes'.

Before I leave the house, I always check to ensure that the lid is DOWN, toilet flushed, water cleaned around the sink and faucets turned off .. along with all lights. 

Sep 03, 2015 08:39 AM #24
Raymond Denton
Homesmart / Evergreen Realty - Irvine, CA
Shady Canyon Specialist

I've read several posts here at activerain whereas the Realtors say the opposite - it's nice to hear this perspective (the one I agree with).

Sep 03, 2015 10:09 AM #25
Ed Silva
RE/MAX Professionals, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

At the very least they do ask.  Some feel a viewing is an open invitation to literally move in

Sep 03, 2015 12:10 PM #26
Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

I always answer with, wait, let's check to see if the water is on.  We have lots of people who winterize or turn off water to vacation homes when the leave in my area, so even many furnished, privately owned homes have the water off.

Sep 03, 2015 01:03 PM #27
Marshall Brown
Mid America Inspection Services, LLC - Fargo, ND

The good news is, that as a home inspector, I am required to verify proper operation and I frequently have my clients assist me in that duty.

Sep 03, 2015 10:35 PM #28
Alan Kirkpatrick
Austin Texas Homes - Round Rock, TX
Alan in Austin

Greg Nino 

Well said. Even model homes have at least one bathroom prepared for this. 

Sep 03, 2015 11:05 PM #29
Bill Morrow
Keller Williams of Central PA - Mechanicsburg, PA
Bill Morrow, Associate Broker

My answer is yes (as long as the water is turned on), but be respectful in the way you leave it. If you mess a little then clean up after yourself. Wipe down the seat and rim and also the wipe the wash basin. Rememeber two things. You are a guest and the homeowner more than likely took a few extra steps in making the home presentable for you.

Sep 03, 2015 11:21 PM #30
Gene Riemenschneider
Home Point Real Estate - Brentwood, CA
Turning Houses into Homes

Greg the first thing I thought of when I saw the Title was all the stuff going on with Gender ID and who can use what restroom.  I think as it stands now anyone can use any restroom.  Seriously though.  If you gotta go you gotta go.  And as a listing agent when the water is off I have found it does not stop people.  But that is just a gross subject.

Sep 04, 2015 01:50 AM #31
Amanda Christiansen
Christiansen Group Realty (260)704-0843 - Fort Wayne, IN
Christiansen Group Realty

I once had a buyer ask me if it was okay if she used the restroom during a showing.  I said yes, but be respectful.  A few minutes later her husband and I wandered back to see where she was.  She came out of the bathroom with a red face and a panicked look.  She looked as us and said "I pooped!!"  

Best showing I've ever had.  

Sep 04, 2015 02:24 AM #32
Lottie Kendall
Compass - San Francisco, CA
Helping make your real estate dreams a reality

Yes; a hall bath or powder room - not the master bath if the home is occupied.

Sep 05, 2015 01:29 AM #33
Troy Erickson AZ Realtor (602) 295-6807
Good Company Real Estate - Chandler, AZ
Your Chandler, Ahwatukee, and East Valley Realtor

Greg - When you gotta go, you gotta go. Just need to check to make sure the water is turned on first.

Sep 05, 2015 02:15 PM #34
Doug Rogers
Bayou Properties - Alexandria, LA
Your Alexandria Louisiana Agent

People are going to use the bathroom, with or without permission. Hence, I tell my sellers it's better to leave the water on. I've run into a "Baby Ruth" or two during my tenure. And no, the listing agreement does NOT include "Baby Ruth" removal.

Sep 07, 2015 11:23 PM #35
Deleted Account
Fort Myers, FL

I think the answer should always be yes, unless the home is a foreclosure, when the water is usually turned off.  One sign that the water is turned off is they have plastic wrap over the toilets.  I always ask my clients to check the sink to make sure the water is turned on and tell them, "even though you probably know to and will, please clean up after yourself when you are done."  When I do an open house, I require that the water be turned on, as a guest might have to go.

Sep 11, 2015 02:25 AM #36
Tammie White, Broker
Franklin Homes Realty LLC - Franklin, TN
Franklin TN Homes for Sale

If the water is on, the sellers toilet is fare game. I even carry a roll of toilet paper in my car, just in case.

Sep 12, 2015 01:53 PM #37
Kelly Dixon
RE/MAX - Clearwater, FL

Well I'm the odd one because when I first take buyers out one of the things I am adamant about is that we NOT use bathrooms in any house we are viewing whether it is occupied or not.  

I will happily stop along the way at a convenience store or restaurant but I do NOT want to worry about the issue that could come even in an occupied home of what if it backs up or doesn't work well?    I also strongly discourage people from bringing their little ones along especially on initial showing tours so we don't have to stop every 5 minutes for their tiny bladders.    

Sep 15, 2015 02:51 AM #38
Dale Taylor
Re/Max 10 New Lenox Illinois - Frankfort, IL
Realtor = Chicago Illinois Homes Townhomes Condos

I liked this so much I am reblogging adding a humorous story.  I'm glad you had the boldness to share this.  I think you'll find my twist on this amusing.  Thanks

Nov 23, 2016 12:00 AM #39
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Greg Nino

Houston, Texas
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