House-Hunting Etiquette: Questions You’re Afraid to Ask

Permission to view someone’s home for sale comes with some rules of etiquette.

Even if you are visiting an open house, you need to be aware of things that you may normally take for granted.

Preparing ahead will help alleviate confrontation or the need to ask these questions when you are in someone else’s home.

1. Is it okay to consume snacks or drinks? Unless you are prepared to clean up or pay for a spillage accident, have your refreshments before you enter a home. If a seller has left cookies out for the showing, feel free to take one and eat it in the kitchen.

2. Can I use the bathroom? If it’s urgent, ask for permission. You never know if the water has been shut off. Schedule stops to take care of your personal needs before visiting.

3. Is looking into closets acceptable? Look all you want, but don’t disturb what you see.

4. What about taking photos? Before you click the camera, first ask if it’s okay. This is especially important if you intend to post your photos publicly and the seller has personal effects that they don’t want promoted.

5. Can I sit on the furniture? This is not a good idea unless you have a physical need to do so. Ask for permission if you need to sit for health reasons.

Call or email us with any of your burning house-hunting questions. We are always here to help and make sure you have a pleasant experience.