FILET-O-FISH Eating Seller

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Compass, formerly RE/MAX WHP

One of the things I love about my career is the lack of boredom. I never "see the same old thing". Today I showed a home. In fact, I showed a lot of homes. As usual there's always a unique experience to talk about. Today I showed a house with some unusual inhabitants.

The house itself was actually pretty nice. The floor-plan worked. The price was fair. The people living inside killed the deal. One of the people walking around was eating what appeared to be a handmade filet-o-fish sandwich. Ketchup oozed out the sides as she clamped down with her jaws. Here eyes crossed as she swallowed. She did this in the entry way as we walked past her. She mumbled something about us being early to the showing. In retrospect, I think she said this because a very small part of her was embarrassed about the condition of the home. Because we were right on time.

In the kitchen were 5 or 6 people discussing, almost arguing about how best to heat up whatever it was they were heating up in a gigantic pot that barely fit on the stove. They weren't phased by our being there. Not one bit.

Music was playing in the garage. The door was open, but nobody was in there. Just music and no lights. Upstairs the 49er's were playing the Vikings. A game that had to be at least 10 years old. An older man rocked back and forth in a green rocking chair. We could have tossed a grenade in the room and he wouldn't have noticed. He didn't even acknowledge us as we walked in. There he sat. Like a wooden Indian.

Come to find out, these were the tenants. The house was in deplorable condition. Food piled on the counters. Shoes and junk lay everywhere. There was even someone laying down in a lawn chair in the backyard. Not too far away was a lawn mower. He was taking a break.


Posted by


Greg Nino
, Houston area Realtor®.
Helping residential buyers, sellers and tenants 7 days a week.
Available @ 832-298-8555 

RE/MAX Compass (Formerly RE/MAX WHP)




The information contained in this blog is believed to be reliable and while every effort is made to assure that the information is as accurate as possible, the author of this blog, and its comments disclaim any implied warranty or representation about it's accuracy, completeness or appropriateness for any particular purpose. All information is copywritten and the property of Greg Nino.  






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  1. Bob Crane 07/25/2012 12:13 AM
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ActiveRain Community
All Thing's Texas
Lessons Learned
Almost Anything Goes
tenants in house
bad showing with tenants
tenants in listing

Comments 30 New Comment

Steven Cook
- Pierce, King, Kitsap, Thurston, Mason Counties

Kathryn (#10) has a good idea, though some sellers would probably prefer to do the opposite, especially if the tenants are now month to month, of raising the rent each month it doesn't sell.

July 23, 2012 01:04 PM
Karen Fiddler, Broker/Realtor
HOM Sotheby's Intl Realty, 949-510-2395

Oh it's so tough to show with tenants, let's face it, they do not want to move

July 23, 2012 03:46 PM
Bob Crane
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9663
Woodland Management Service

Thanks for sharing this story Greg, I hope the seller finds out that the tenants are trying to torpedo any potential buyers.

July 23, 2012 10:40 PM
Evelyn Kennedy
Alameda, Real Estate, Alameda, CA
Gallagher & Lindsey, Alameda, California


Not all tenants are a negative when it comes to selling a home.  Some tenants want to stay and will try to accommodate showing and keep the home is good condition.  These tenants are rare.  Mostly we get the ones you describe in your post.  The best thing to do when selling a rental property is to get rid of the tenants, price the home correctly, make sure it is in good condition, then put it on the market.  The home should sell quickly in perfect world.

July 24, 2012 09:50 AM
Dianne Goode
Raleigh Cary Realty

Yeah, I knew they were tenants at the fish sandwich.  As Evelyn says (above), the best way to show a house with tenants is to not have any.  Get it empty, fix it up, stage and sell.  Unfortunately, many landlords can't afford to lose the rent. The worst experience I ever had showing a rental was a house with someone's underwear hanging on the doorknob.  EEew!

July 26, 2012 04:08 AM

Greg Nino

Houston, Texas
Providing Real Estate Advice 7 days a week!
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Additional Information

RE/MAX REALTOR® serving all of Houston, Cypress, Katy, Spring and Harris County. Available 7 days a week. Residential resale, new construction and leasing.