Seller’s Etiquette

Good Seller Etiquette


When your house goes on the market, you’re not only opening the door to prospective buyers, but also sometimes to vendors and naive or unqualified buyers. As with any business transaction, there is an expected protocol to how sellers, buyers, and their respective agents interact. Should you find yourself in a sticky situation, alert your agent so he or she can address and remedy any problems.

Keep it simple for buyers

If you reviewed our video page on what buyers in this market are looking for, you would have seen that Millennials are specifically looking for ‘easy closings’…which equates to: do not put up too many road blocks. We’re looking to accomplish the shortest amount of time to be on the market; therefore, make it easy for buyers.

You should be flexible for showings so it’s convenient for buyers to get in. Most buyers work; therefore, the times that will be convenient for them will probably be after 5 and on weekends. Make sure you remain flexible about leaving your home. Avoid putting contingencies on the sale; for instance, move in dates. It may be more desirable for you to sell and move in to your new home on the same day, but that date may not work for your buyer. Be considerate when deciding on these types of items. It could cause you to lose the sale completely.

An Aggressive Agent

When your agent puts your house on the market, typically all promotional materials state clearly that your agent is the primary contact for buyers and buyers’ agents. However, sometimes a buyer’s agent will contact a seller directly to try to either win over their business or try to make their own deal.

This is not reputable behavior, is against New Jersey Real Estate Commission Code of Ethics, and you should report it to your agent immediately if it happens to you.

Hounded By Vendors

When you first moved into your home, did you suddenly find your mailbox full of junk mail? Unfortunately, this also can happen when you put your house on the market.

Though MLS organizations enforce rules on how posted information is used, some companies have found ways to cull information from various sources to produce mass mailing lists. If you find yourself regularly emptying your mailbox of junk, please understand it is not your agent that sold your information nor is it the MLSs.

The Persistent Buyer

For Sale lawn signs, Internet listings on hundreds of websites, and other advertisements can generate a lot of buzz for your home. Some prospective buyers – particularly first-timers – will be excited to see your home; so they’ll simply drop by unannounced.

If this happens, no matter how nice these unexpected visitors are, it’s best not to discuss your home or provide them with any tours. First, for security purposes. You have no idea if they are really serious buyers. Instead, politely let them know that your real estate agent is in charge of scheduling tours and provide them with your agent’s business card. If you attempt to handle this situation yourself, you might inadvertently disclose information that could be harmful to a prospective deal.