Q. What is Broker Tour?
A. Broker Tour is a time when sellers make it easy for Brokers to see properties that are on the market. The “tour” is a process by which brokers can look at properties without making prior arrangements. In the Corvallis, Albany and Philomath areas, the agents let themselves into homes that are pre-set; in some areas, like there is a “caravan” type tour that is rigorously scheduled and the agents group together and all go in a few cars at once.
Q. How does this process work?
A. The listing agent sets the tour time up in the MLS system. In Corvallis, Philomath and Albany brokers “tour” on Wednesdays. The time of the tour is flexible, but most commonly around 9:00 am until early afternoon. One of the nice features about the way we tour here is that we can flex a little and work around our client’s schedules and needs. Other areas have different methods, for instance in some communities the tour is more of a “caravan” with a list of pre-scheduled properties. Additionally, some offices have an established “office tour” which may or may not be established as part of their office meeting agenda.
Q. Which properties are on tour?
A. Tour is often comprised of the “new” listings for the week. Sometimes a “new” property has been on the market for a while (days or even weeks) before it is scheduled for tour. Sometimes homes that have already been on tour once are re-set for additional tours. Generally, those homes have had a “change” like in price or décor. Occasionally, the first tour had a poor turn-out, so it’s re-set to give the brokers another chance to see the property. It’s never a bad thing to let brokers have easy access to preview a property. Broker tour is a little like “open house” just for agents.
Q. Why is it beneficial for brokers to tour?
A. This is a chance to see the property and be familiar enough to discuss it with clients. Sometimes, brokers tour with a specific client in mind, other times not. It is also a way to become familiar with the market, understand the various homes that are for sale and associate a price point with them. This is also a social opportunity, brokers on tour often cross paths and has a chance to talk with colleagues, exchanging ideas and needs.
Q. Why didn’t more agents tour my home?
A. There could be any number of reasons why some agents didn’t tour. Often it’s because they have conflicts in their work schedule. It’s possible that they’ve seen the house (either on tour previously or even when it was on the market in the past). Sometimes the time that is set is not practical or long enough to allow them to see every property. Rural properties are often under-toured due to drive times etc. There may have been a number of properties on tour and the volume made it impossible to see them all. Some brokers only tour if they have a client that may match a property, some never tour at all.
Q. What about a luncheon or give-away?
A. A lot of brokers offer luncheons or give-a-ways with the idea in mind that more brokers will tour the home. This is sometimes an effective way to get more traffic to the home… may or may not have a real impact. Some will attend just for the incentive. Brokers with clients matching the home (and with an open schedule) will attend regardless.