When Sacramento buyer’s agents send clients to open houses unaccompanied and they later write an offer, it still stuns me. If clients do not need their agent’s guidance, do they really need their agent? Open houses are heavily visited by buyers without their agent. This happens as regular as clockwork. It is no longer an exception but now more of a rule that agents send their buyers to open houses.
There are of course some agents who actually show up to our open houses with clients. We understand that an agent may be holding an open house and can’t make it to an open house at the same time a client wants to see it. Of course, they could plan to see it after their open house or send another associate to attend with them. At the very least they can go back with the clients a second time to see the property and then write an offer.
We ask unaccompanied buyers at open houses if they are working with an agent. They often reply, yes, we have an agent. Our next question, is your agent meeting you to show this home? A list of excuses is generally blurted out by the buyer as to why the agent isn’t coming. Clearly, they just send clients to open houses. Perhaps the buyers didn’t put much emphasis on the importance of their agent coming with them. — JaCi Wallace
The excerpt below in italics was written by my business partner, Elizabeth Weintraub, seven years ago. It’s titled Sacramento Real Estate Agents: Ramp Up. It is the same core issue today, seven years later. Elizabeth did a great job of conveying how its agents make excuses instead of focusing on solutions to provide top-shelf level service to clients. Enjoy — it is spot on.
Agents complain that they can’t submit offers fast enough so they have to submit without showing. No, they don’t. They just need to get their act together. An agent lamented that he could not show a home yesterday during the time period it was convenient for the tenants to show it. He asked if he could send his buyers over to the home without an agent escort. No, he can’t.
But I heard that some buyers were wandering around the home by themselves. Just because we’re in the middle of a home-buying frenzy in Sacramento does not mean it’s OK to set aside Standards of Practice. If anything, we, as Sacramento real estate agents, need to ramp up our professionalism to ensure quality service to our clients. — Elizabeth Weintraub
If you want to hire a professional buyer’s agent that shows you property, provides insight and expertise, call Weintraub and Wallace Realtors, with RE/MAX Gold. We don’t send clients to open houses and shirk our duties. We can be reached at 916-233-6759.
— JaCi Wallace
June open houses on Sundays can be a bit quieter the weekend before the Fourth of July. Our team holds several open houses on Sundays and today was no exception. Opens were steady in Land Park, Rancho Cordova, Rosemont, Sacramento and Gold River. All were attended with 4-7 visitors except Gold River, this community had well over 35 people through. Buckeye Court was very popular today.
Sundays are often the best days to meet new people and sell real estate. June open houses are always worth the preparation. Our sellers appreciate our efforts as it only takes 1 person to buy a property. An escrow is always entirely possible. So many agents were away today as the visitors told us their agents were out of town today. Our team was right here in Sacramento working away.
— JaCi Wallace
Do you know why Realtors prefer open houses on Sunday afternoons? Many Realtors who take new listings put them on the market on a Thursday afternoon. This gives us a few days to market the Sunday open house to ensure a high number of visitors on a Sunday. I signed a new listing today in Natomas and met our photographer there. Our plan is to roll the property out on Thursday and enter it into MLS that day. I have ordered a Coming Soon sign, which will also promote it, and I will market the open house online in several places.
Years ago, when I worked for a company in Sierra Oaks office in 1998, we held open houses on Sundays from 2-5 PM or Saturday 1-4 PM. Back then, Realtors thought that was too long and everyone started doing Sundays 2-4 PM and Saturdays 1-3 PM. This trend caught on and the new times took root.
What I noticed at opens on Sundays at 4 PM, often the visitors are still coming. We see many Sacramento Realtors locking up, telling people the open house was closed. I thought this was an odd practice as aren’t we there to have people come? I decided that as long as visitors were still coming, I would stay. Much of the time, the bulk of traffic came at 3 PM and after. Realtors prefer open houses on Sunday afternoons because it is the busiest day of the weekend.
Like my partner Elizabeth Weintraub says: “Sunday open houses is a religious experience of California.”
It takes a lot of preparation to complete the planning and advertisement for a well attended open house. Pulling comparable sales in the area and preprinting flyers so we can deliver them to the neighborhood the morning of the open is a great practice. Likewise, putting out an open house sign rider stating day and time early in the week so people see it beforehand and come back on Sunday.
Sending open house marketing to agents who have sold or listed in the area is a great way to increase traffic, because they tell their buyers about it. Social media posts are very effective to increase traffic. Also, setting out all the open house signs from busy streets to easily direct people.
These are just a few ways you can ensure great traffic, we have more but I am running out of time. The thing is Realtors prefer open houses on Sundays; even though it may be a lot of work to prepare for, but we want the highest traffic and best opportunity.
If you would like to have a very busy, well promoted open house, please call the Weintraub & Wallace team 916-233-6759.
— JaCi Wallace
Wondering about the for sale sign in front of this chic Boulevard Park loft? Are you looking for an urban lifestyle in Sacramento? Well, look no more as you have arrived! Let us take a spin through this living room at 2020 H St. Sacramento (# C) 95811. The stained concrete floors and stone fireplace with glass rock give that industrial feel with iron handrails.
Affordable living at its best in Midtown Sacrametno, behind a gated entry. You’ll undoubtedly enjoy the additional privacy and security offered in this small complex.
This is a kitchen with all the bells and whistles. Pendant light and under cabinet lighting with granite counters and stainless appliances frosted glass accents on the center cabinet doors enhance the warmth and total convenience in a large kitchen make you feel like a chef on the cooking channel!
Wow! Look at this staircase! The wood steps give this loft a sense of style and what a view! The blinds are electronic and have remotes, no expense spared.
The bedroom has so much living space. A convenient master bath and walk-in closet provide every convenience of luxury loft living. Look at the copper-colored vent pipes!!! See it today. This property features a gated entry and contemporary design. A dedicated parking space right outside your front door.
With 1328 square feet, indoor laundry 2 full baths, everything needed for you is here, plus, all appliances stay. Walking distance to restaurants, yoga and coffee shops.
Come see this Boulevard Park loft at our open house on Sunday, April 7th, from 2:00 to 4:00 PM. The incredible Barbara Dow from Weintraub & Wallace Realtors at RE/MAX Gold will be hosting for you.
2020 H Street, #C, Sacramento, CA 95811 is exclusively offered by Weintraub & Wallace at RE/MAX Gold at $499K. Call Weintraub & Wallace today for your private showing, 916-233-6759.
— JaCi Wallace
There is a reason why a Sacramento real estate agent might be reluctant to talk about mortgages. It’s not that we don’t know anything about mortgages, because we know a great deal; it’s because we are not a mortgage broker, and what we don’t know about mortgages can be very important to a buyer. Same thing when the tables are turned. Most mortgage brokers know a lot about real estate, but the things about buying real estate that could be very important to a home buyer, a mortgage broker might not know.
I have the utmost respect for Michele Dillingham at Big Valley Mortgage. She writes about mortgages and finance for the Sacramento Bee. However, her piece this Saturday contains a confusing error. She basically told home buyers that they should not go to an open house. She says: “The problem is that if you don’t tell the agent at that house that you already have your own real estate agent, then your agent may lose out on the deal — and you lose out on having your own agent. The agent who has the property listed would be representing both buyer and seller.”
It’s not true. Not true how a Sacramento open house works. It’s true that not telling the open house agent that you have your own agent could cause bickering among agents, but you are under no obligation to write your offer with the listing agent or even with the agent who is holding that Sacramento open house. You can go to an open house without your own agent, and you’ll be OK. If you have an agent, it’s a good idea to tell the host or hostess of the open house that you are working with an agent, but that’s more for your own protection. If open house agents know you have representation, they probably won’t ask for your personal information, nor will they be likely to
hound follow up with you.
Moreover, many of the agents who hold an open house are not the listing agent. That’s because many listing agents do not actively represent buyers themselves. They might prefer to focus their business on seller representation. In that event, they would allow an agent on their team or in their office to hold the home open. That way, the agent holding open the house can also pick up some residual business from home buyers. They can try to represent the open house guest by writing an offer on that home or maybe they can show the buyer other homes. But you, as an open house guest, have no obligation to work with the open house agent nor the listing agent.
The only exception to this is new home sales. Don’t even think about stepping foot on a new home subdivision or new home sales office without your agent. If you are considering a new home, call your agent FIRST. But resales and previously owned homes are a completely different story.
If you are looking for an agent to represent you, going to open houses is a good way to meet a variety of real estate agents and, in a casual way, figure out whether you might want to work with any of them. If you do, then ask that agent to be your own representation. Be prepared to sign a Buyer’s Broker Representation agreement, which is a legal agreement, a two-way-street, between you and the agent’s brokerage.
But whatever you do, don’t put off going to a Sacramento open house just because you are worried that the agent will have dibs on you. Nobody can have dibs on you without your express written permission.
Here are a few of my Sacramento open houses that you might want to visit this weekend:
- Saturday, April 13th, 2013, 6800 Bismarck Drive, remodeled for $215,000.
- Sunday, April 13th, 2013, 3627 T Street in Med Center, Craftsman for $225,000.
- Sunday, April 13, 2013, 1620 Sutterville Road, Land Park, 5 Bedrooms, for $519,000.
- Sunday, April 13, 2013, 6800 Bismarck Drive, remodeled for $215,000.
- Sunday, April 14, 2013, 576 4th Avenue, Land Park, w/addition for $375,000.