Seller Responsibilities During Listing

seller responsibilities
When a house is listed for sale the list of seller responsibilities include decluttering and housekeeping. It’s not the Realtor’s job to make sure a house is photo-ready at the time of listing,

I read this post, The Most Poorly Staged Home in Atlanta History, today on Curbed. The blogger and comments took the listing Realtor to task for taking pictures of the property in it’s state at the time of listing without regard to the obvious clutter. They call him out for unmade beds, dirty towels and even a half empty aquarium. Are we supposed to keep a supply of distilled water in our trunk along with other just in case items like toilet paper and a supply of rain ponchos for a family of four?
The Most Poorly Staged Home in Atlanta History

I’m going to go out on a limb here. When a house is being listed and an appointment has been made to photograph the house the seller should know that means someone is going to show up at their front door with a camera in hand. 

You might be thinking that if the house isn’t photo ready interior pictures just shouldn’t be included in the listing. I can see that. However, because most buyer’s are looking at homes online (and skipping right over listings without pics), Realtor’s really must provide as many photos as possible. Heck, CENTURY 21 won’t even allow me to post my listings to the Century21.com site without a minimum of six images. 

Besides, let’s be real. Even if the house is cleaned before the photos are taken, how likely is it that it will stay that way for showings? I can answer that, not very likely at all. I’ve shown countless homes where my client has said, “this doesn’t look anything like the pictures” as we tour the house. 

That leaves a listing Realtor with three options;

  1. Clean the house themselves and have it look nothing like the pictures during showings
  2. Not include any images and risk the listing being overlooked by online shoppers
  3. Present the house in it’s current condition and say a silent prayer

Come on folks. It’s the seller’s responsibility to ensure the house is presented at it’s best. It is not a Realtor’s job to make beds or clean the house. Sure, I’ve moved dish soap and mail out of a camera shot. I almost always move trash cans and highchairs but I’m not going to make someone’s bed or pick up their dirty clothes. Home seller’s bare responsibility for how their house is presented during the entire listing process. It is my job to take whatever I’ve been given and market it to the best of my ability or not take the listing.

No Need to Tidy!

And then there’s this. It’s a post from the other side of the pond courtesy of The Daily MailNo need to tidy! Filthy house sells for its full £115,000 asking price… despite its owner advertising it in this shocking state of squalor Go Figure!

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