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The role access plays in getting your home sold



image of house key

So, you’ve decided to sell your house. You’ve hired a real estate professional to help you with the entire process and you’ve been asked what level of access you want to provide to potential buyers. Access plays a role in getting your home sold. By access, we mean access for showings, open houses and other opportunities for prospective buyers to come and see your home in person to consider it as a option for them.


There are four elements to a quality listing. At the top of the list is Access, followed by Condition, Financing, and Price. ​​The reason access is so important is that it is difficult for buyers to consider an offer on your home if they can't adequately review the home in person. I wanted to take a moment to touch on some key points to help you ensure that prospective buyers have the opportunity to consider your home with regards to access.

  • Advance notice - We recognize that there may be preparations necessary each time you anticipate buyers coming to see your home. Let your Real estate agent know what kind of notice would be ideal. But, also recognize that there are times that short-notice showing requests may arise... and these could be legitimate buyers. The law of numbers shows that the more showings you have, the greater the chances of one of them being 'THE BUYER' for your home. Discuss in advance how you want to handle last minute showing requests.

  • Responsiveness - If you are living in the home and/or desire to have all showings go through you before approving, you will want to make sure that you are being responsive when your real estate agent reaches out to request showing approval. When real estate agents are scheduling showings, they often submit their time/day requests as part of a schedule that often involves other showings before and/or after their requested time to see your property. As such, quick turn-around responses are important. Late responses may mean that your home gets removed from the showing schedule in order to solidify the agenda for the buyers and their agent. You may wish to consider an up-front agreement with your agent to determine if the agent may auto-approve a showing if they have not heard back from you within a specified period of time.

  • Entry - The majority of homes on the market will have SUPRA boxes that are used for Buyer Agents to access the home for showings. These SUPRA boxes are only accessible by licensed real estate agents and provide alerts to the listing agent when an agent has accessed the home as a security measure. Although everyone may desire having their agent at all of their showings, that may be difficult to fulfill as agents will typically have other responsibilities they are taking care of including prepping other listings, attending closings, attending listing appointments, attending inspections or even taking buyers out to see properties. At some higher price points, it may be more common for listing agents to attend showings in person. You may want to consider having a SUPRA box available at the house just in case your agent isn't able to get to the home for an accompanied showing. They could brief the buyer agent to share all the highlights of the home in advance of getting to the property. This will help ensure you don't miss showings from prospective buyers.

  • Flexibility - In an ideal world, we would be able to pick the time that showings happen at our homes. And, sometimes this is indeed possible. However, most of the time, a buyer's agent is juggling multiple properties they are lining up to maximize the buyers time in their home search. There may be some flexibility, but keep in mind that sometimes there may not be and the reality is that most buyers have set aside certain days/times they are available to see homes. This is especially true with out of town buyers. As such, they may not be in a position to consider coming back another day. So, when at all possible, being flexible will help you avoid missing prospective buyers.


Certainly, living in a home while trying to sell it isn't always an easy thing, especially when there are kids involved that may cause extra cleaning preparation. Each seller needs to make decisions on house access that works for them. The key is to align expectations with access. The more difficult your home is to show, the fewer showings you may have and the longer it may take to sell. In a competitive marketplace, access can make or break your ability to get the price you are looking for, or even sell your house at all.


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