Should Children be at Home Showings?

If you’re a parent who is planning on selling your home, it’s a good idea to keep some child etiquette rules in mind before your showing. You can make sure your child doesn’t derail your chances of selling your home by making some key preparations in advance. Helping your child understand his or her age-appropriate role in the process could go a long way toward making a quick and easy sale.

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It’s important to make sure your house is neat and tidy before a showing. An infant or small child can present special cleaning challenges when you’re selling your home. Dirty diapers should either go in a diaper disposal unit or outside in the trash to prevent unwanted smells. Burping cloths should be washed and put away.

To keep child food messes contained, institute a “no-eating-outside-the-kitchen” rule immediately and consider hiring a professional carpet and furniture cleaner to thoroughly go over your home, especially your child’s room. To save money, you could also  rent a steam cleaner and do it yourself.

You definitely don’t want children at your showings, including older ones. Children tend to distract homebuyers, sometimes even sharing secrets about the house you’d rather they didn’t. If there’s no one who can take care of your child during a showing and you’ve agreed to be there – you’ll have to cancel it.

Instead of inviting your child to participate in selling your home during the showing, consider giving them other helpful tasks to do ahead of time. Chores will vary greatly by age, but no matter what they can be helpful in getting your child on-board with a move. These could include keeping up a consistently clean bedroom, cleaning up after household pets or drawing a “thank you” picture for visiting homebuyers.


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About Ilyce Glink

Author of 13 books, including the bestselling 100 Questions Every First-Time Home Buyer Should Ask. Writer of the nationally syndicated column, “Real Estate Matters.” Top-rated radio host in Atlanta. Writer for CBS MoneyWatch.com. Managing editor of the Equifax Personal Finance Blog.
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