Marathon Showing Days

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Beam & Branch Realty TREC #547752

I am sure all of us in Real Estate have experienced those Marathon Showing Days! You know, the ones where your clients have limited time to find a home and you book the day with back-to-back showings. There are simply times when we put on our track shoes and seize the day!

Having run numerous long-distance races, the key to enduring the race was in the preparation. The same holds true for our long-distance showing days. Knowing your schedule, making sure you have all of your showing instructions, and route is imperative.

My personal record (PR) for showings is 21 homes. I was in the Houston market at the time and my out-of-state clients had ONE day to find a home! It was daunting, exhausting, and, it took scheduling prowess! You have to know the area, understand traffic patterns, and be pretty good at guessing the schedule to arrive at each home.

Today I am back in the Marathon mode as my new, out-of-state clients have two days to find a home. The geographic area they wish to see spans across 4 counties and many, many miles. However, because we are in a more rural area, traffic isn't a deterrent, and getting to and from these homes is achievable.

I have created some strategies for these Marathon showing days:

🏃‍♀️ Create a Showing Spreadsheet. I love using this tool so all of the important data about each property is on one document. This helps the buyer compare the homes as they view them.

🏃‍♀️ Utilize Mapping Tools. Thankfully, we have all sorts of great tools to help us map the properties and gauge distance and timing. 

🏃‍♀️ Client Folder. I like to print everything out for the clients such as the homes they will see, extra paper to take notes, needed documents, etc.

🏃‍♀️ Travel Supplies. I like to keep a cooler of water and snacks prepared for the day. Other items that are suggested are a good, first aid kit, a roll of toilet paper, hand sanitizer, paper towels, and any other items that could help in a pinch situation.

I know there are many other tips and tricks that can help us finish our Marathon Showing days strong. The main. point is making sure you are ready to start and finish strong. Our clients need us to be able to go the extra mile for them! Let's do this!

Posted by


Kathleen Daniels, Probate & Trust Specialist
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
Probate Real Estate Services


I remember those marathon showing days Dr. Paula McDonald 

I enjoyed working with buyers at the time yet I do not miss working with buyers today. 

No doubt you will find the perfect home for your clients.  

Jun 28, 2024 08:08 AM
Dr. Paula McDonald

Thank you, Kathleen. Just now coming up for air after my crazy 4th!

Jul 09, 2024 11:32 AM
Jeff Masich-Scottsdale AZ Associate Broker,MBA,GRI
HomeSmart Real Estate - Scottsdale, AZ
Arizona Homes and Land Group/ Buy or Sell

Marathon showing days and open house days can be as taxing as running a marathon. Great picture Paula! Jeff

Jun 28, 2024 10:16 AM
Dr. Paula McDonald

You know that's right, Jeff! It was super hot so it was taxing.

Jul 09, 2024 11:33 AM
Anna "Banana" Kruchten
HomeSmart Real Estate - Phoenix, AZ

Hi Paula -  I so remember a couple of those marathon showing days, especially with out of town relocating clients.  2 days to find their dream home with all the bells and whistles takes a lot of planning - and knowing the market. It was always so rewarding to put an offer on 'the one'.  Often times it turned out to be 'the one' I thought it would be from the git go.  But you still need to show them other homes......

Jun 28, 2024 03:37 PM
Dr. Paula McDonald

They don't come up too often for me, but when they do, I am reminded what a tough day it can be.

Jul 09, 2024 11:33 AM
Kathy Streib
Cypress, TX
Home Stager/Redesign

Hi Paula- Larry and I were those marathon buyers when we moved to Northern VA. It as a seller's market which made it harder. 

Jun 28, 2024 07:22 PM
Dr. Paula McDonald

Because most of us have been there ourselves, it is great when we can do the same for a new buyer.

Jul 09, 2024 11:34 AM
Laura Cerrano
Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island - Locust Valley, NY
Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher

I’ve been there before when you get really busy and all your jobs run  one into the next..

Jun 28, 2024 10:35 PM
Dr. Paula McDonald

When it rains it pours, right? So glad I don't have to do that all of the time.

Jul 09, 2024 11:34 AM
Brian England
Ambrose Realty Management LLC - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

I learned early on that 10 homes in a day were about the max, but I know of one occasion I showed close to 30 homes in one day, haha.  That was exhausting.

Jun 29, 2024 05:11 AM
Dr. Paula McDonald

Yes, Brian, 10+ homes is tough. But, when out-of-state folks have a time limit, you just power through.

Jul 09, 2024 11:35 AM
Dorie Dillard Austin TX
Coldwell Banker Realty ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
NW Austin ~ Canyon Creek and Spicewood/Balcones

Good morning ,

Marathon showings seems to be the thing of the past now with limited inventory but if you are showing across 4 counties and many many miles you are indeed going to be running strong and you can do it! Your buyers are lucky to have you, you will find them the perfect property!

Jun 29, 2024 05:20 AM
Dr. Paula McDonald

These folks are great and will be a wonderful addition to our community.

Jul 09, 2024 11:35 AM
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Oswego, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Good morning Paula. Only once did I have a marathon day. He was a relocation customer who spent his Sundays where he currently lived visiting open houses as a hobby. The good news is he knew what he was looking for so most showings were quick. The bad news is if he had an interest he took forever. Lesson learned, know more about your customer upfront and limit showings. Enjoy your day.

Jun 29, 2024 05:32 AM
Dr. Paula McDonald

Good advice, Wayne. Some folks do have a tough time making a decision.

Jul 09, 2024 11:36 AM
Candice A. Donofrio
Next Wave RE Investments LLC Bullhead City AZ Commercial RE Broker - Fort Mohave, AZ
928-201-4BHC (4242) call/text

Back in my ancient res days, I've had buyers who literally wanted to see EVERYTHING out there which is unrealistic but they have FOMO, LOL. I advise picking the top 5 and let's rule them out first. There are those who insisted, though, and I've done a couple dozen back then. 
Tour packet is essential, along with your other items! Esp here where we're already up into the 'teens' temp wise! 

Jun 29, 2024 06:19 AM
Dr. Paula McDonald

Yes, Candice - the temps were high so we battled through.

Jul 09, 2024 11:36 AM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Hi Paula:

You're right, proper preparation and planning is key to showing a lot of homes in one. And or course sometimes things go awry despite the best planning - traffic, and buyers still at the home you are scheduled to show. And of course covering a broad geography can complicate things a lot. I think the most I ever showed in one day was 18.

Enjoy the weekend!


Jun 29, 2024 01:52 PM
Dr. Paula McDonald

It is difficult, Jeff. Glad I don't have to do this very often.

Jul 09, 2024 11:37 AM
Sam Shueh
(408) 425-1601 - San Jose, CA
mba, cdpe, reopro, pe

Without internet then information is well protected. Buyers seem to use you for data input. Today they call you and ask I know everything about this house than anyone else. I like you to be my Supra door opener. How much you can credit to me? 

Jun 29, 2024 02:03 PM
Dr. Paula McDonald

I have been fortunate with my clients. I am on a referral basis so I am blessed to work with serious buyers.

Jul 09, 2024 11:38 AM
Laura Cerrano
Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island - Locust Valley, NY
Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher

In this regard, definitely good luck this weekend and the new season and make sure you paste yourselves in all of your success. :)

Jun 29, 2024 11:35 PM
Dr. Paula McDonald

Thank you, Laura. Both couples are now under contract! Yippee!

Jul 09, 2024 11:38 AM
Jeffrey DiMuria 321.223.6253 Waves Realty
Waves Realty - Melbourne, FL
Florida Space Coast Homes

I love to run. It is not only a great way to stay in shape, it gives me so much time to reflect.

Jun 30, 2024 07:35 AM
Dr. Paula McDonald

You are so right, Jeffrey. Running is an excellent method to solve the world's problems while you click off those miles.

Jul 09, 2024 11:39 AM
Jan Green - Scottsdale, AZ
Value Added Service, 602-620-2699 - Scottsdale, AZ
HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN

GREAT post for anyone to be prepared for a marathon day of showings!  I so appreciate this as my record is 20 in 100+ degree heat.  My clients aid, "We want to see them all."  So I said, buckle up!

Jun 30, 2024 09:44 AM
Dr. Paula McDonald

I have seen your record temps of late! Wow. You guys be safe.

Jul 09, 2024 11:39 AM
Wanda Kubat-Nerdin - Wanda Can!
Red Rock Real Estate (435) 632-9374 - St. George, UT
The best agent in Southern Utah!

Recently had a couple of days like that, Paula. 28 houses shown to an out of state couple who were in a time crunch. We got it done though!

Jun 30, 2024 11:08 AM
Dr. Paula McDonald

We do what we have to do to take care of our clients. Sometimes we just put on those running shoes and get er done!

Jul 09, 2024 11:40 AM
Ed Silva, 203-206-0754
Mapleridge Realty, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

I do remember those days and don't miss thee at all,  I liked to use the directions app on the MLS where all the listings showed and a route was made to get to them efficiently. And a lot of notes taken.

Jun 30, 2024 01:21 PM
Dr. Paula McDonald

Ed, the new apps are very helpful these days. i remember the days of using MapQuest.

Jul 09, 2024 11:40 AM
John Juarez
The Medford Real Estate Team - Fremont, CA

Your planning for the day, Dr. Paula McDonald, is what enables your marathon showing days to work out best for your clients.

Jun 30, 2024 03:58 PM
Dr. Paula McDonald

So true, John. Inadequate planning could cause a day of disaster!

Jul 09, 2024 11:41 AM
Myrl Jeffcoat
Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Realtor - Retired

Those are all great tips for marathon showing days, Paula.  I was sitting here wondering how many homes I had shown in a single day.  I can't remember, but do know, it may have been close to that number.  Especially, if I was working with more than one client.

Jun 30, 2024 07:30 PM
Dr. Paula McDonald

It was a long couple of days but I got them under contract and they are happy.

Jul 09, 2024 11:42 AM
Myrl Jeffcoat
Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Realtor - Retired

CONGRATULATIONS Paula, on having this blog FEATURED in the Old Farts Clubgroup!  

Jun 30, 2024 07:31 PM
Dr. Paula McDonald

Thank you, Myrl!

Jul 09, 2024 11:42 AM
Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543
Realty ONE Group Advocates 484-237-2055 - Downingtown, PA
Selling the Main Line & Chester County

Great post. When I have days like this I say to my clients to somehow identify the house in such a way that they will remember it, for example the blue house because they painted walls a strong blue. Then to keep asking themselves which are their favourites and which are they rejecting and why. That way they keep track throughout the day of which one they like most. It is hard work for us who do this regularly, but for a consumer who doesn't it is even harder. Your steps were all good suggestions.

Jul 02, 2024 06:30 AM
Dr. Paula McDonald

Thank you, Nick. It was a pack-filled couple of days but we were successful.

Jul 09, 2024 11:42 AM