Open Houses - A Buyer's View

Is it worth going through open houses when you are looking to buy a house?

You bet it is!!  An open house is your opportunity to view a house during daylight hours when (usually) the owner is not at home, when the pets are gone and you can take a good look around.  Then you can go off and view another open house, and compare what you have just seen.

When you are going through the open house, however, you should remember that you are going through another person's home.  There are some common sense points of etiquette that you should keep in mind.

1.  The real estate salesperson on duty at the house is acting as host on the vendor's behalf and should be treated with the same respect you would give the vendor.

2.  The furniture and the furnishings belong to the owner; if you admire a particular piece of art or object, do so from a distance.

3.  If you are asked to sign a guest register, please do so.  It is a reasonable request that the vendor have a record of who was viewingh their home when they were not present.

4.  Don't wantder through the house without the salesperson present; if the REALTOR is busy, wait until he or she is able to show you around.  Feel free to go off on your own, however, if the REALTOR suggests you do.  The advantage to having the salesperson go with you is that he or she can point out features of the home you may miss if you look around on your own.  Also, if you have any questions, you can ask immediately instead of trying to remember to ask.

5.  When attending an open house, it is important to clarify up front if you have been viewing homes with another REALTOR.  You can do this by simply telling the salesperson hosting the open house or - even better - noting the fact in the guest register you sign, alongh with the name of the REALTOR you are working with.  Remember that the REALTOR you are working with has gone to alot of effort on your behalf and won't get paid a commission if you switch to another REALTOR. 

Keep these things in mind when you go house hunting - and happy hunting!!!!

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