Recently, I talked to a buyer who was very confused by the process. She told me that there was a house she really wanted to see, but “the seller declined my showing request. They must not want to sell their house”.
What she was missing was the understanding that the sellers are still living in the house. And that means that life, as they know it, must go on while their property is on the market. There are a number of reasons that may have caused the seller to say no.
Reasons Sellers Decline Showings
When you’re dealing with a sick kid (or adult), there’s no way you want to either clear them out of the house or subject them to strangers walking through their bedroom.
Pets are a big deal when showing homes. Do they need to be kenneled? Are there special instructions for dealing with them? Or, like a lot of people, do the sellers take them out during showings? If no one is available to snap a leash on Scruffy, believe me, you’d rather wait for that confirmed appointment.
Tenant occupied properties come with their own challenges. Most of them don’t like the idea that their place is being sold, so a last-minute showing is going to be a big, fat NO from them. It’s only polite to give some notice.
The seller has an odd sleep/work schedule. Shift workers, medical personnel, and first responders all have wonky work and sleep schedules. If the time you want to visit falls squarely into their REM cycle, odds are that they will say no.
The listing agent must be present for all showings and they are not available. We try to discourage sellers from making the listing agent be present up for every showing because it adds a layer of difficulty in scheduling appointments. That said, sometimes the listing agent is in charge of the pets or some other special circumstance that requires them to be there.
The seller has visitors in town. Think about it. Even though someone wants to sell their home, it doesn’t mean that they want to interrupt that every 5-year visit from Nana.
Repairs are in progress on the property. Stuff happens. Trees fall on roofs. A kid leaves a faucet running and floods the place. The hot water heater springs a leak. A freak thunderstorm takes out the patio cover. Most people don’t want the liability of having potential buyers tour their home when it is occupied by repairmen and not putting its best foot forward.