"What are they doing in there?" said the muffled voice on the other end of the phone line. The owner of said voice was a client whose home was on the market. She was parked down the street from her house while an agent was showing it to potential buyers.
Here's what usually happens when a Realtor shows your house.
The buyer’s agent will request a showing appointment time from the list agent. Typically, a one-hour time window is requested. The list agent notifies you, the owner, of this requested time. You get your house all cleaned up and head out the door, taking your dog with you and being sure to leave the lights on as you depart.
When possible, good agents try to arrive 5 or 10 minutes early so they can familiarize themselves with the layout before their clients arrive. If the clients arrive at the same time as the agent, though, the clients stand with the agent outside at the front door while the agent uses his or her authorized e-key to open the lockbox and access the house key. This can take a couple of minutes, so home sellers must not overlook the importance of a tidy, freshly painted front door complete with friendly wreath and doormat. First impressions go a long way.
Once the agent has the key and opens the front door, the clients walk inside and typically cluster just inside the door. Whether they are taking off their shoes or just looking around, sellers can help make this moment a good one by clearing out furniture and decor so there is enough room for 3 people to comfortably stand just inside the entrance to the home.
Once they have gotten their bearings, the agent begins a guided tour of the house. As they go room by room, the agent will be answering their questions and explaining things like the heat source, neighborhood amenities, and what have you. The kitchen is always an important part of any showings, as are bathrooms and the master bedroom.
I've seen sellers leave notes on a kitchen table that detail any special features of the home not visible to the naked eye. Once, I showed a home in winter and the seller left a note describing how the landscaping looks in the spring and summer, complete with a few pictures. That extra information was a great showing boost, as my clients appreciated it and ended up making an offer.
Once they've toured the entire home, yard and outbuildings, the agent will answer any remaining questions and wrap up the appointment. The clients may be going on to other showings with their agent. The agent may leave a business card on your kitchen counter so you know they were there, and they will lock the door and put the key back in the secure lockbox as they go.
And that, my friend, is what they are doing in there.