Although you want your clients’ undivided attention when showing them a property, sometimes they have no choice but to bring their children along. How can you make the best of things when buyers bring their kids to home showings?
Know the family profile
Your client needs analysis may include information on your clients’ family size and the ages of their children and may also indicate they’re interested in kids’ rooms, play areas and local attractions. This background not only determines the properties you will show your clients, it preps you for the possibility that they may bring their kids to home showings.
Questions to ask
When scheduling showings, ask the parents if they will be leaving the kids with caregivers. If not, ask about their ages. Mom and Dad can carry an infant, but toddlers are the biggest challenge, followed by elementary age children. Teens can entertain themselves with their phones but can also be involved and give their parents input. (Roughly half of buyers with children seek the kids’ opinion on houses.)
If kids will be coming along, ask whether it would be helpful if you brought toys, tablets or coloring books along. In the case of two-parent households, ask whether both will be attending so that one can take children outside if needed. If only one parent will be coming, you might ask whether another adult could come along to occupy the kids if necessary. Another idea: Hire a young person to accompany you and your clients to entertain the children.
To avoid offending your clients, ask these questions with finesse. Emphasize your desire to allow them to make undistracted decisions.
If you know the parents want their children’s input, ask the kids questions during showings about which bedroom they’d like, what their favorite features of a property are and what local attractions appeal to them. You could even give them pen and paper to jot down their thoughts.
Other practical steps
- Recommend that the family eat beforehand so kids don’t get “hangry” during showings.
- Ask parents to handle bathroom needs before arriving at a property. They should use a seller’s bathroom only in a true emergency.
- If you are showing a family several houses, break up the day with a lunch break, or take a couple of days to complete the showings.