Profile picture for user580788

Are sellers obligated to explain how to use appliances or equipment to buyers?

If you have a contract on a house you are selling, are you obligated to allow the buyers to come by to be tutored on how to use appliances, irrigation, or pool equipment? Also, what about buyers that show up on your property before closing?
  • October 20 2012 - US
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Answers (7)

Profile picture for wetdawgs
Work with your agent on this.

It seems like it is a kind thing to do, as well as compile all the appliance and equipment manuals for the new owners.     Often swimming pool pipes and valves as well as irrigation systems are very poorly documented, so some photos with arrows and descriptions helps the new owners have a pleasant (and less expensive) transition. 

If you were buying, how would you like to be treated?
  • October 20 2012
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I agree with wetdawgs:  Golden Rule.  It won't hurt you to show them how some of the basic home systems work so they don't damage them by mistake after moving in. 

As to the other part of your statememt:  Buyers can't just randomly "show up" whenever they want prior to a closing, however, in most cases.  Be sure to inform your agent this is happening so he can inform the buyer's agent (assuming it is a non-dual agency transaction) can tell their clients to set up an appointment, or to just wait until you guys move out per the terms of your contract.

Best wishes from So-Cal and Good luck
  • October 20 2012
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Profile picture for user580788
Unless my eyes failed me, and that is possible, they pulled into the drive, sat there for a brief time, then backed out, and drove on the grass about half the length of the lawn. I don't know why they would come by, and it is not their home until closing, so why would they drive on the grass? If it was them, it was disrespectful. They may have been trying to see if I had already vacated.
  • October 20 2012
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Profile picture for user580788
I forgot to say. I do agree that it's the right thing to do to help the new owners, and I did. I would want someone to help me as well.
  • October 20 2012
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Profile picture for wetdawgs
Driving on the grass and parking in the driveway does indeed seem a bit odd.  

It is not unusual for purchasers to stop outside and look at the house as well as wander the neighborhood before purchase.   They are anxious and impatient to start thinking of it as their  home.

  • October 20 2012
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Profile picture for ShaylaTwit
No, a seller is not obligated to show you how to use the appliances or other functions of the home.  It would be a nice gesture though, that's for sure.  It truly is the buyers' responsibility to conduct their own due diligence on these types of items.

Hope that helps.  Good luck.  Shayla Twit, Sarasota FL Realtor
  • October 20 2012
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Profile picture for Becky and Gary Viles
I generally make a request, if I'm representing the buyer, to set up a time just prior to closing to do a walk-thru and ask the sellers to take just a few minutes to go over things.  If the seller  is uncomfortable with that, then I request that they leave any manuals for appliances etc. on the kitchen counter.  Most sellers are happy to do that but there is no requirement for them to do so.

The anxious buyers....this isn't terribly uncommon.  If security is a concern, I generally make certain to remove the lockbox once the appraisal is completed.
  • October 22 2012
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