There is a secret home showing tip that agents often employ early on in their careers — and then, for some odd reason, forget about.
Learn how you can leverage this forgotten strategy to improve home showings.
If you've already listed your house, it's likely you have a lockbox on your home to allow agents access to your home to show it while you are away. Most modern lockboxes are read electronically. In many parts of the country, Supra lockboxes are common, and real estate agents either use a display key code to connect, or they might have an app on their cellphone that will unlock the box. The code is exclusive to each agent.
Once the box is opened, Supra lockboxes, for example, store all of the information on a website. After the lockbox has been accessed, a report is uploaded to the website, which a listing agent can view. These reports can show:
- The date and time the key was removed from the lockbox.
- The name of the agent who removed the key.
- The phone number and email of the agent who removed the key.
- The agent's employing broker's name and office phone.
Utilize the Data
Armed with this information, the listing agent can then contact the buyer's agent who showed the home and ask for feedback on the home. This simple action is the best home showing tip that agents tend to forget.
Using this strategy, the agent can question the showing agent and find out the answers to the following questions:
- What did the buyer think of the home?
- How does this particular home compare with other homes the buyer was shown?
- Which features did the buyer like?
- Is there anything wrong with the home?
- What is the buyer's opinion of the sales price?
Buyers are an amazing source of information and their agents can be very helpful, too. A buyer's agent often spends days in the field showing homes. They see all the competing homes up close and personal — and often more than once.
A buyer's agent can share thoughts with the listing agent that will help the listing agent to sell your home.
How to Take Action
Let's say, for example, that your sales price is too high. You would likely never set your sales price too high on purpose, but your listing agent could have been trying to impress you when they agreed that a price much higher than any other comparable sales in the neighborhood was a good idea.
If you hear from several buyer's agents that your price is too high, maybe you won't be upset with your agent for telling you once again that the price is too high. Maybe if all of your potential buyers tell you over and over that the price needs to be much lower, your agent might suggest a price reduction. Once the price is reduced, you might receive an offer.
Your listing agent can call agents directly after a showing, send agents an email or text message, or even stop by every few days to pick up business cards if they don't use a lockbox that sends reports.
In order for the best home showing tip to work for you, your agent needs to find a method to discuss your listing with the agents who show it.
How to Attract Buyers
Apart from price, there could be other things you could change or improve, based on buyer feedback you receive from showings. Buyers and their agents can tell you if your home has a strange smell, which can quickly turn off buyers. Cigarette smoke or pet urine odors produce some of the worst complaints — as the homeowner, you may not notice a particular odor or be less sensitive to it.
Take for example a seller who received report after report from buyers who complained about the noise in the backyard. The seller lived in the house for almost 20 years and never noticed the sound of cars driving by on a busy street behind the home—that's because they had a pool, and when they were in the yard during the summer, the big body of water, coupled with plenty of leaves on the trees, tended to mute traffic noise.
While they didn't spend time in the yard during the winter, they were selling in winter. Without leafy trees and open water, the sound traveled — and it was noisy. All it took was a water fountain and a sound-barrier fence to change the dynamics and noise level in that backyard.
Sellers need to hear what buyers and the buyer's agents have to say about your home. Your agent should get this information after each showing and pass it on to you. This home showing tip has been invaluable to sellers over the years. Hopefully, it works well for you, too.