Kids and Real Estate: 5 Tips for Your Buyers


5TipsForBuyers_03-04_blogBuying or selling a home can be stressful. There are so many calls to make, appointments to keep and documents to track and organize.

For families with young children, these transactions can get even more complicated with elaborate schedules and childcare situations. If you are an agent who frequently works with buyers who have young families, here are some tips for helping them get through this hectic time.

You can share these on your agent website, in a first-time buyer package or include them in emails to your clients. When you’re finished, take a minute to read the companion piece: 5 tips for sellers with children!

5 Tips for Buyers with Children

1. Preview neighborhoods as a family.

Checking out the neighborhood(s) where you will be house hunting can help get kids ready for (and excited about) a move. If you already live nearby, a drive to see sights and get dessert at a local shop can be a fun adventure.

If you’re moving farther away, consider learning more about your new neighborhood online. In additions to local travel and city sites, many agent sites and top real estate search portals now have neighborhood features that highlight local amenities.

2. Consider a sitter.

You don’t have to take your children to see every house, and they can be distracting at financial appointments. To keep your sanity intact, consider a sitter. If you are far from your home base, you may be able to ask your real estate agent for a childcare referral from his or her large network of contacts.

3. Pack snacks.

This is a great tip even if you don’t have kids! Driving around, assessing homes and reading forms all day can sap your energy and brain power. Pack healthy, portable snacks like fruit, nuts or trail mix to keep everyone alert and in a good mood.

4. Set ground rules.

Before you go see houses, talk to your kids about your expectations for their behavior. Some good ground rules might be no running and no opening drawers or doors without permission. You might also want to discuss keeping opinions to yourselves until you are out of the home, to avoid putting the listing agent or seller in an awkward position.

5. Be careful about premature promises.

Never say “and this is your room, little Susie!” until the contract closes and you are 100% sure you own the house. Home buying negotiations can be tricky and home inspections can make or break deals. If something goes wrong, it’s certainly a bummer. Breaking the news to your kids – who may already have their hearts set on the home – is even more of a bummer.

What is one of your best tips for house hunting with kids?

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