Showing Etiquette: Courtesy AND Safety

Safely navigating showings has become one of the more challenging aspects for real estate professionals. At NorthstarMLS, we hear about these challenges and the need for extra diligence and cooperation among agents to keep everyone safe. While we cannot dictate how agents and sellers manage their showings (except that you have a confirmed appointment to access the property), we offer these hopefully helpful suggestions from your fellow agents:

  • Per the Code of Ethics, follow the guidelines set by the seller and their agent. If requested, wear a mask, use sanitizer, wear shoe covers, touch as little as possible (wear gloves), etc. Consider whether leaving a business card may make the seller feel uncomfortable. You may want to take these and other precautions regardless of whether asked.
  • Do not run over your allotted appointment time. Aside from a possible Code of Ethics complaint (and potentially fineable), if you stay past your scheduled time, you are affecting the next appointment who likely needs to wait outside until you are finished (or the ability of the owner and their family to return).
  • The default setting in ShowingTime is to not allow overlapping showings. Though not recommended, if you override this setting to allow overlap, please inform your showing agents.
  • If you are the List Agent and have guidelines, communicate them clearly to all showing agents. Set the home ahead of time to facilitate, for example interior doors open and lights on (to minimize need to touch), provide sanitizer at key locations, etc.
  • Notify the List Agent (or click “Done Showing” in the ShowingTime app) if you leave significantly earlier than your scheduled finish time.
  • Consider the optimal time for your showing appointments. As List Agent, what should you set as the maximum appointment time given the current high demand? We hear that a lot of appointments allow up to an hour, causing available appointments to fill very quickly and limiting the pool of buyers. Also, some showing agents schedule for only 15 minutes and then run into overlapping with the next appointment because they did not allow enough time.
  • Review this Open Houses Guide with tips from Minnesota Realtors Association
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