Open House Etiquette

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We recently held an open house and had children come through eating messy food, we had to ask the parents to kindly put it away, so we thought it was an appropriate time to discuss open house etiquette.

Whether you are visiting a property with your realtor for a private showing or an open house, please take this into consideration.


First and foremost, remove your shoes. Remember, you’re walking through somebody’s house, likely one that the owner still calls home and one where they are working tirelessly to keep it clean for visitors like you.  There will be exceptions such as dilapidated, dirty and vacant homes, use your best judgement or ask your Realtor if you’re ever not sure.

On this topic, consider wearing socks (or having a pair handy) and wear shoes that are easy to slip on and off.


As nice as it might sound to walk around with a coffee and doughnut, it’s best to leave that stuff in car.  This goes for you and the children.  Don’t try to entertain kids with food and drinks.  It will be challenging enough to keep an eye on them while you tour a home, let alone see where little Suzy hides her crumbs and wipes up spills with her socks.


We understand you can’t always find somebody to watch the kids, so, if you’re out with your children, make sure you keep them close at hand. Many homes you visit are furnished, have owner’s personal belongings, which are sometimes valuable and/or breakable and not child friendly.  Not to mention, most of these homes won’t be child proofed to the same degree yours is.  Keep kids close to prevent damage and ensure their safety.


Don’t go sniffing through dirty drawers. It’s perfectly acceptable to open up appliances, kitchen cabinets and drawers of anything included with the purchase, but not furniture that’s not included.


Last but not least, when your Realtor schedules an appointment, they will be given a list of instructions. One very common thing to find in here is whether or not you should turn lights on or off before you leave the home. As you’re leaving, make sure you double check and find out what was requested.

Inspired? Confused? Comment.

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