LA Connection Property Blog: Ask your Buyers to sleepover

Ask your Buyers to sleepover

I read a blog this weekend in which the writer highlighted the possibility of inviting prospective buyers to sleepover and spend the night. This is something I've never thought of ... but something I certainly would NOT recommend.

An article appeared in the July 15 edition of Realtor Magazine (based on an article from the Wall Street Journal) suggesting that Buyers ask for a sleepover if they're interested in a house. This sounds like a Realtor's version of "Goldilocks and Three Bears" which I think could only lead to all sorts of problems.

Imagine the potential legal problems that an owner or agent could expose themselves to. 

The article suggests that a legal contract be drawn up prior to confirming such an arangement. I wonder how an agent's Errors and Ommissions insurance would be effected by such a plan, not to mentions the potential insurance liability of the Seller.

Comment balloon 16 commentsCOMPASS PALM SPRINGS | Stewart Penn • August 24 2008 11:56AM


Sleepovers scare me, unless the home has been professionally staged and all personal materails from the seller are already removed.

What would be the recourse if, when the buyers leave a figurine is stolen. Would the seller hold the buyer responsible for this.

Just my opinion.

All th best.


Keep on blogging

Posted by Bill C. Merrell, Ph.D. - Merrell Institue (Merrell Institute ~ Appraisal Education Network) over 12 years ago

Bill - My thinking went even further. What if there was a fire and the home was destroyed? What if the prospective buyer was injured while stayng over?

I think the responsibility imposed on the Seller would simply be too much.

Posted by COMPASS PALM SPRINGS | Stewart Penn, COMPASS Palm Springs - Broker Associate (COMPASS) over 12 years ago

That sounds very scary.  All you need is a lawsuit happy person.... too much of a liability.

Posted by Carol Swain, Realtor, Bucks County, Pa (Keller Williams Real Estate) over 12 years ago

I dont think this is scary, but why do it.  It does not make much sense.

Posted by Chuck Carstensen, Minnesota Real Estate Expert (RE/MAX Results) over 12 years ago

Chuck - The rationale behind this is to allow the prospect to see how they relate to the house, and how comfortable they feel.

Posted by COMPASS PALM SPRINGS | Stewart Penn, COMPASS Palm Springs - Broker Associate (COMPASS) over 12 years ago

No way! This sounds like a nightmare waiting to happen.  SCARY!

Posted by Tiffany Landis over 12 years ago

What a waste of time. If anyone has ever been in court before, they know that nothing is worse. I can see this making you a regular visitor to the local court system. Amazing what people coome up with. Sounds like a California type of thing...Sorry Steward, forgot you were from LA. However, if the palce is vacant and they want to use sleeping bags, might work... but probably no one would show up..does open the door for a lot of parties..

Posted by Hollis Tidwell (MoneyCafe USA,llc) over 12 years ago

Hollis - This was first suggested in an article in the Wall Street Journal, so it wasn't a "California Thing"

Posted by COMPASS PALM SPRINGS | Stewart Penn, COMPASS Palm Springs - Broker Associate (COMPASS) over 12 years ago

I just don't see this being very popular with potential buyers.  And I can't imagine how many sellers would agree to something like this.  Like everyone mentioned, the liability for something like this is huge.  In theory, it sounds like a great idea.  In reality, it's a disaster waiting to happen.  No thanks.

Kevin Wunderly

Posted by John Doe over 12 years ago

I have a seller who has been watching a show on HGTV: "Date My House" or "Sleep On It" or something like that... He told me he really wanted to offer that to the potential buyers of his 2.6M listing.

I nearly fell over! As soon as I explained how that would put him in the hotseat to take on the liabilities for damages done (including fire) and that despite drawing up numerous papers to protect him from harm, they probably wouldn't hold water because he's inviting it upon himself by taking the initiative to offer such a thing.

Thankfully, HOA wouldn't allow it anyway. (Wow, mark that one down in the books as something they ARE good for! LOL).

Lori Stratford

Posted by Lori Stratford, PLLC GRI (John Hall & Associates) over 12 years ago

Kevin - What would happen if a Buyer moved in for the night and wouldn't leave. Squatters rights?

Lori - It's irresponsible for TV shows to give clients silly ideas like this.

Posted by COMPASS PALM SPRINGS | Stewart Penn, COMPASS Palm Springs - Broker Associate (COMPASS) over 12 years ago

I actually read about this very thing several months back here on AR. It was an awful idea then, and still is!

Posted by Rich Dansereau (Positive Real Estate Professionals) over 12 years ago

Wow, You know what guys? I actually thought it would be an incredible thing as a buyer. I believe it would be worth doing all the work to write up a nice thorough contract before hand because It would guarantee a sale. You have to remember guys that it's all EMOTIONAL for buyers, don't forget that. We don't ever buy logically: We buy emotionally.

Yeah it may be scary, but the antidote is education and a good contract to cover all your bases. I think it's a fabulous idea, specially if the place is totally empty.

We must get creative in a time such as this if we want to sell. Stupidity can easily be cured with education.

This, of course, is my humble opinion. God bless you all amigos!

Carolina ;-)

Posted by Carolina Paredes (Remarkable Life LLC) over 12 years ago

Stewart,I can't imagine what that would do to our insurance! What a liability! Little Johnny fell off the porch and we're suing! Whatever...I had thought of it before but ruled it out. Good post.

Later in the rain~Deb

Posted by Deb Brooks (Brooks Prime Properties Wichita Falls Texas) over 12 years ago

Not on My Watch!

You can sleep in your car if you want to see what the traffic to work is like at 7am.

You can see how big the yard(or small) and if you want to mow that much.

You can see how big the kitchen is(or small) if you entertain or just like to cook

You can see how big the garage is(or small) and know if your SUV will fit.

You can see how many bathrooms(or how few) will make your morning routine work

You can see how big the master bedroom is(or how small) when you look at the house

You can sleep in the bedroom, mow the yard, cook in the kitchen, park in the garage, shower in the bathroom and do "whatever" in the Master Bedroom......

.......WHEN YOU OWN THE HOUSE! I'm NOT mean! I'm protecting my Sellers, which is what I was hired to do!

Posted by Thom Abbott, Midtown Atlanta GA Condos For Sale ( |770.713.1505 | Intown Atlanta GA Condo Living) over 12 years ago

Agreed ... agreed ... agreed.

Posted by COMPASS PALM SPRINGS | Stewart Penn, COMPASS Palm Springs - Broker Associate (COMPASS) over 12 years ago

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