What To Ask During An Open House
Be prepared! Having questions ready makes sure that you get all the answers you are looking for while you are walking through the home. Open houses are the best time to not only get a feel for the house but also get detailed information on the property from the leasing agent. These are 10 very important questions to get the ball rolling.
1. How many offers have been made?
Does the listing agent seem to be in a particularly happy mood? It could be he absolutely loves his jobs like ours at BVO Luxury, or it’s the fact that he has already had an offer on the property. If you ask this simple question the listing agent will be more then happy to tell you in the hopes that you will bid as well and drive up the price.
2. How stable has the price been?
Your real estate agent can always tell you how many times the price has changed. However, the seller’s agent is always happy to explain to you why. The why is very important. Perhaps the price has dropped because the seller is eager to move or on a tight timeline. Information like this gives you an advantage and shows that the price could be flexible.
3. Why do the sellers want to move?
The sellers could be moving for a lot of reasons and this gives you great insight to the area. Whether it’s a bad neighborhood or not close enough to schools these are very important things to know. The agent may be hesitant to answer however, look for the hesitation or half-baked answers.
4. How long has this property been on the market?
You can always find this information on your own. However, the seller’s agent will be able to put this into context for you. This is important information a lot of people think that a listing that has been on the market for a while is a bad thing. The reasons could very but maybe the listing had a buyer whose finances fell through. This is a very important question to ask.
5. What issues does the house come with?
The seller is required to tell potential buyers exactly what is wrong with the house whether it’s structural or code violations. It is standard to ask for a written sellers disclosure so request one! Make sure to visit the problem areas and take photos of the areas so you can fit them into your renovation budget if necessary.
6. When was the house last updated?
It’s easy to visually see new appliances and paint however, a new roof, AC or other non-visible upgrades are just as important.
7. How much do utilities cost?
Be able to budget everything before you make any decisions. You never know and may be surprised in the difference in utilities between your new place and old place.
8. What’s the seller’s timeline?
Sellers choose their timelines for various reasons whether they are eager to sell and move or they are waiting for their children to finish the school year. If they are eager to sell, it will be more important for you to make a great offer.
9. Where can I get a bite to eat?
Getting directions to the local coffee shop or restaurant will tell you a lot about the neighborhood. If there is local retail close by and the sellers love it most likely you will to.
10. What are the neighbors like?
Are the neighbors kid, dog and family friendly? Is there a thriving bar scene that brings everyone out every weekend? It is important to know if you are getting into a tight knit community or a keep to yourself one. This will be important when weighing what you want out of a community and the price of the home.
Remember while open houses are great places to throw out questions don’t give away everything about your situation and family. Be discreet about your finances and how much you love the home. It is up to you to make an offer and pick the best time to do so.
"Home is wherever you are"