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Why Assisted Showings Can Hurt Sellers

Agents are constantly trying to justify their 6% commission model. One of the ways they do so is by telling sellers that they will attend showings of the property even if the buyer has their own agent. Agents convince sellers that their presence will help sell the home because they will be able to highlight the home's features better than the buyer's agent.

Unfortunately, assisted showings actually reduce a seller's chances of selling a home.

Buying a home is a very emotional experience. Buyers typically choose a home that provides them a positive visceral feeling during a showing. If the buyer feels comfortable and "at home" during a showing then they are much more likely to buy the home.

Buyers rarely feel comfortable when the seller's agent is hovering over them. Despite what seller's agents tell prospective clients, buyers do not appreciate a home more when the seller's agent highlights features of the home. Instead of appreciating those features of the home, the buyer feels like the seller's agent is giving them the "hard sell" like a used car salesman.

The buyer would prefer to be able to speak freely to their own agent about the home rather than having to temper their remarks and questions about the home because of the presence of the seller's agent. Because most buyers do not know which questions should be shared with the seller's side and which should not, they often forego asking questions that may have actually helped sell the home.

In most of the Country these days, selling agents can no longer convince their clients that assisted showings are beneficial. Selling agents have acquiesced into the use of lockboxes to allow buyer's agents to show property without the seller's agent being present. In my opinion this practice has helped greatly in making buyers more comfortable and sellers who do not utilize this practice are simply hurting their chances against sellers that do.

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