Profile picture for KellyLu

Should i hire a babysitter for the home buying process?

How many events/meetings etc during the home buying process are inappropriate/inconvenient to bring a small child with you to? We plan to house shop next spring and this will be our first time so we are pretty clueless. We have never hired a babysitter and have no one to watch our 3 year old so i am wondering how many things would be a challenge bring her with us to? I'm guessing probably applying for a loan and also closing wouldn't go well with her around? I'm imagining that house hunting itself might be a challenge with her along? She is extremely well behaved but anxious of strangers and can be clingy as a result which might make it hard for me to really concentrate. We can hire a sitter but I'd rather not unless we have to. No one has watched her yet except family.
  • October 09 2012 - Portland
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Answers (8)

Profile picture for Matt Hiatt
That would be up to you, what you think would be best. I have had several of my clients bring their children along with no problem at all, but if you think it might distract you, then it might not be a great idea especially at closing because you do want to pay close attention to what you are signing.
  • October 09 2012
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Profile picture for wetdawgs
When touring  homes for sale, it is not unusual to spend several hours looking at a number of homes on each of several days.     When a home is  for sale, it has  the owners' personal possessions and may have fragile items used to show it in top form.   Can you control a squirmy 3 or 4 year old for hours at a time and at the same time pay close attention to the features that you may be interested in a home?     The child may not have food or drink in the homes, and if in the agent's car shouldn't have food or drink in their car.   When inside the house, you should either carry the child or hold the child's hand 100% of the time.  

When I've been buying, I've seen people drag their children around.  Often the child is not appropriately monitored, and sticky fingers end up in places they don't belong.    The child does not enhance the buying process, and could cause serious problems.  As a home owner who has sold homes, I don't want children visiting my home  when it is for sale especially on the first pass.   A well behaved older child is welcome on second or third view before actually finalizing an offer, but  at 3 years old I don't think there is any reason to bring a child.

I would very strongly recommend a baby sitter.   It sounds like you have plenty of time to familiarize your child with new babysitters between now and next spring.   Thanks for thinking ahead.

(I don't hate children!)




 
  • October 09 2012
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Profile picture for doug132
Hi KellyLu, Great question.... The quick answer is you don't need to get a babysitter. I have had many clients with kids go through the whole process without a problem. I have two girls (2 and 4) and understand your concern but you will be happy your daughter was involved in the process. I hope this helps. Doug
  • October 09 2012
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Profile picture for Ofe Polack
It is entirely up to you, I would not bring my 3 year old child, but that is me, primarily because I want to concentrate on the property and not in holding my child's hand to ensure that she does not touch anything in the many properties we will be visiting.  You will get tired, imagine a 3 year old!  Get a sitter or ask a member of your family to watch her!!!   
  • October 09 2012
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I would highly recommend to secure a sitter especially for closing. While you are viewing properties, you never know what you may come across and it take some time to find the right home. It's very common to view homes with fragile items or actual safety hazards. In addition, you want to be able to notice the little things when looking for a home. It can quickly push a home to the top of your buy list. Finally, signing loan docs takes time and you will want to pay attention throughout the process as you are signing legal documents.
  • October 09 2012
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KellyLu, I would recommend a sitter if you are going to be viewing multiple homes and at closing. It can get tiring for your daughter and for you. You want to be able to look over each home thoroughly. As a mom, it would be important for me to have my child get a sense of the property before I made a final decision and in that case once you narrow down the properties, you can plan a day to take your daughter along and view the top choice. At closing, it is imperative you understand all the information presented and will definitely want a sitter.
  • October 10 2012
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It depends on the individual 3 year old in my opinion. I have often had young children at signing off in escrow without any problem and many parents take their kids along when looking at homes for sale, Open Houses etc. My pet peeve is parents who allow their kids to run riot in other people's homes and make no effort to control them. Unfortunately, a common occurrence.
  • October 10 2012
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Initially, I would get a sitter.  I love when I have an opportunity to meet my client's children, but it is difficult for any child, no matter how well mannered, to go to multiple homes and get in and out of the car so many times.  Leaving your child with the sitter will also allow you to relax and not feel pressured to rush through your showings.  Later in the process, when you have chosen the home that you wish to purchase, then I would suggest bringing your child so he/she can embrace their new home.
  • October 10 2012
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