If you are a home owner and are thinking of selling your home or if you are already selling, please read this article. It is a very important reminder that your safety should always come first. "Don't show your home to strangers without an appointment!" It is the same thing we teach our children from the moment they begin to walk; "Don't talk to strangers!"
The other day a seller client told me that she showed her home to strangers off the street who knocked on her door and expressed interest in seeing the place without an appointment. She accommodated them. We don't know who they are, or even if they were qualified to buy. She just hoped they might be the ones. I told her to never do this again. Call me a suspicious New Yorker, but the risks outweigh the opportunity when you show you home to strangers with no appointment.
Prior to scheduling a showing, we verify the credentials of showing agents, their contact information, and their licensure. Nobody gets an appointment without verification. If it is our own buyer, we verify their identity and their financial qualifications. Otherwise, I might as well have a hitchhiker in my car. To not take these measures I expose my firm to severe liability and clients to undue risk.
What can go wrong by letting strangers into your home without a proper appointment? Plenty.
- "Staking the place out" for future theft
- Identity theftThat last point is a new one, but once someone can get a bill or some other personal item off your kitchen table you have the seeds of a far bigger problem than a stolen necklace.People who can't set up an appointment and insist on dealing directly with the owner of a listed property may not have a screw lose, but they are trying to pursue a fallacious angle, namely that bypassing the agent gives them an advantage. The bottom line is that while they may not hit you over the head, they are almost certainly wasting your time.
- J. Philip Faranda, Broker-owner, J. Philip Real Estate, LLC. 2010 Vice President, Westchester-Putnam Multiple Listing Service.
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