You would not let a total stranger walk in from the street for a tour, even if he politely knock first. Your home is your territory. Quite naturally, you feel very protective of this environment and the furnishings and objects you value. Once you place your home on the market, it is normal to feel a bit uncomfortable about letting strangers in.
Your Listing Agent plays a key role in ensuring your property receives due respect while on the market. In fact, it is highly recommended that you step out prior to showings. Why? Because just as you have a nagging fear of intruders, homebuyers have the nagging fear of coming across as intruders every time they open a closet or take a peek around the corner.
Allow your Listing Agent to take charge. After all, he or she truly is at your service. Placing showing times at the discretion of your agent also means you do not have to stress over leaving work early or taking time off and it allows more latitude for the agent to schedule a showing. You are selling one home; buyers may be juggling to view five. Not all will be available to see. Your “open door” can be one of your greatest assets.
If the showing is scheduled for a time when you might normally be home, grab a good book and offer yourself some time out at the local coffee shop, take the dog for that long walk you had promised a few days earlier or take the kids to the park. Like you, most people are much attuned to other’s space and dignity. Initially, homebuyers will feel more comfortable asking questions while you are not home, so there is no risk of offending you should they voice a concern and less chance of walking away with nagging, unresolved issues in mind.
As your humble representative, your Listing Agent will give you notice when showings are scheduled. Discuss this ahead of time, including any special concerns or preferences such as making sure the dog is outside while buyers view your home, removing shoes or turning the heat down upon leaving. See this like going out for a nice, worry-free evening at the opera with absolute peace of mind because you have placed your home in the very capable and reliable hands of your oldest son or daughter, the one who always walks a straight line and has good common sense.
Your house should “always” be available to show. This is especially important here in Vermont, where a significant percentage of homebuyers come from out of state, some from overseas, and may be around but for a few days. Tidy up and walk away with confidence. You can even skip and hum a tune on the way to the coffee shop. Selling your home is an exciting project.