What is the protocol for viewing listings that are not listed by my REALTOR®
This is the area where many well intended clients make an oops because they are “nice” and simply don’t know the protocol in the real estate world.
Here’s the scenario: You are driving around on a Sunday afternoon and see a home that just got listed (maybe the REALTOR® is putting the sign on the lawn). You stop and call the REALTOR®, enquiring about the home. Discovering that it’s the perfect home for your family, in the excitement of the moment you ask to view it. The REALTOR®says that he is two minutes away and so you view the home with the other REALTOR®. You may even decide to buy it on the spot signing an offer with that other nice REALTOR®who was so accommodating. Then you call the REALTOR®whom you’ve been working with for the past three months and announce with all the excitement of a new father that you found a home! You may hear a pause at the other end of the line while your REALTOR®recovers from the shock.
First let me say that this is not very common that it concludes this way, but many well intended buyers have called another REALTOR® to show them a property because they didn’t want to bother their REALTOR®. This simply has the effect of allowing the potential scenario described above or conversely wasting the time of the other REALTOR®after you tell them “Thanks, we love the property and will call our REALTOR®to write the offer”.
Best practice is to select a REALTOR® that you are comfortable working with and know is looking after your best interest. Any service provider will work harder for you when they are certain that their efforts will ultimately be rewarded and your REALTOR® is no different relying that you will eventually buy a home through them.
Open Houses are an opportunity to view homes with or without your REALTOR® and there are no implied obligations when touring an open house. As a courtesy and to make your tour more comfortable, inform the hosting REALTOR® that you are working with “your” REALTOR®. They will appreciate knowing this because their job at an open house (besides selling the home) is to obtain new clients so this puts everyone at ease. If you wanted further updates on the home, they will contact your REALTOR®with the information for you.
Remember, that your REALTOR® knows your requirements best. If you see a new listing they are usually aware of it or are you best source to obtain the information fastest. Many times there will be some factor that precludes the property from being your best choice and your REALTOR® will inform you of that, saving both you and them valuable time.