How to show your 2BR

Unless you are naturally very neat (not me!), don’t drive yourself crazy keeping your home ready to show at all times. If you have good pictures on your website, that is enough to set the stage for most buyers. I rented a small storage room where I put the extra baby gear, books and sports equipment and spent about two hours tidying up before each showing. Most 2BR owners are families with small children, so a serious buyer will overlook clutter as long as they know just how awesome the rooms can look.

There are two schools of thought to showing: 1) Giving buyers a guided tour, and 2) Letting them roam freely and encouraging them to open closet doors and poke into corners. I ascribe to the second approach because it makes buyers feel more comfortable. I gave out copies of my floorplan (with the website address featured prominently so they could access more information about your unit after the showing) and then set them free to go independently from room to room. It has the added bonus of making them feel at home, which helps facilitate a sale (since your property actually will become their home!) You should include showing guidelines on your website about the amount of notice (24 hours is standard) and preferred times of day.

A showing is an opportunity to convey to your buyer how flexible you are on the asking price. In this environment, most buyers are looking for deals, but there is a big difference between selling 2% under your asking price and 10% under. Buyers want to know why you are moving, so have a short answer ready (ie. job offer, move to suburbs to raise kids). The kind of answer you give will provide them with a clue as to how far under your asking price they can offer. If you tell them you need to move quickly because you have an accepted offer on a larger home, that is code for being willing to entertain any reasonable offer. Meanwhile, if you say you need more space but aren’t sure yet where you want to go, that sends the message that you are not going to sell for much under your asking price.

Above all, keep the conversation casual and positive, emphasizing how much you have enjoyed living in your unit and how regretful you are to leave it. Do not schedule buyers to overlap with each other since one buyer’s comments can negatively impact another buyer’s experience. Give yourself plenty of time between showings since buyers often arrive late (although my FSBO buyers always showed up exactly on time!)

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Kathy Zucker

Author: Kathy Zucker

Mom of 3. Accidental entrepreneur. Fencer. New York Life Shorty Award #KeepGoodGoing winner & judge. Helping parents & kids get to work since 2010 as Metro Moms Network CEO.

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