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Why Client Showings Are a Threat to Vacant Properties

By Oseye Cohen, A.I.M.A

When homebuyers view and inspect houses with their realtors, they are usually very hands on; opening and closing cupboards and closets, turning on and off switches and testing appliances to make sure everything is in good working order. This helps them get a better sense of the home's condition and whether it's a good fit for their needs.

It's important to conduct a thorough inspection and due diligence when considering a property, but it's also important to be aware of its vulnerability when it's vacant or unoccupied for a few days or weeks during the showing process.

Although most Realtors are professional and are careful to leave the property in good condition, not all showings are equal. Quite often there are undesirable events that take place during a showing at a vacant property; lights are left on, toilets are used and left unflushed, gates are left open, doors are left unlocked, and I have even seen stove burners left on! These are common occurrences after showings at vacant properties and these actions can be potentially dangerous and should be avoided. For example:

  • Increased utility costs - leaving lights on can cause unnecessary energy usage and higher electricity bills.

  • Security risks - unlocked doors can make the property vulnerable to theft, vandalism, or squatters.

  • Liability concerns - if someone enters the property and gets injured due to the neglect of a previous visitor, the owner or listing agent may be held liable.

  • Damage to the property - if someone enters and causes damage, it may be difficult to identify who is responsible.

  • Decreased interest from potential buyers - if the property is not properly secured and maintained, it could turn off potential buyers and make it harder to sell.

Vacant property needs to be inspected for possible threats and dangers and maintained on a regular basis. Routine visits help with reducing the risk of trespassing or vandalism, ensuring building safety and reducing insurance costs. When you're away and unable to take care of the property yourself, you can rely on property managers to take care of it for you.

At 12 Gates Property Services, we specialize in managing vacant properties so they look their best and stay in good condition while they are sitting vacant prior to selling or renting. Our services include:

  • exterior/interior inspections

  • graffiti removal

  • cleanups

  • debris removal

  • snow removal

  • lawncare

Contact us for a free consultation and for More Info

12 Gates Property Services ~ Experts in Vacant Properties


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