Most home buyers don't realize this, but they're being listened to while they tour homes. Ideally, their Realtor is listening to them... but what they rarely realize is that the seller is listening as well.
Let me explain.
There's a lot to love about smart home technology, but one unintended consequence is that all the bells and whistles- doorbells, cameras, Alexa- are increasingly monitored by their owners (the sellers). This means that when you're touring a home, the seller is potentially listening to every word that you say. Creepy, I know.
A few tips to consider when you're out looking at houses:
1. Be Aware- It shouldn't take a Ring doorbell to get your attention, but its important that you're aware of your surroundings. You are- literally- standing in someone else's house. It's not your home (yet!), and everything that you say and do can be used against you.
2. Be Careful About (Audibly) Falling In Love With The House- Again, everything that you say can be used against you. If you start fawning over the house- while in the house- the seller will potentially hear every word that you say. Consider this leverage lost.
3. Do Not Talk Strategy While In The House- While it may be tempting to start talking negotiating strategy while still in the home, it's best to save those conversations for a truly private setting.
4. Keep The Catty Comments Quiet- If you don't like the seller's taste in interior design, think the picture of their baby is ugly, or have any other "personal" remarks that you're dying to make... save them. Best to play by the Golden Rule, plus, if you do decide to make an offer on the property, the last thing you want is to be negotiating with someone who already thinks that you're not the nicest person (even if their baby is ugly).
Strange as it sounds, sellers don't have to disclose if they are listening to you. Now that you know... you know. Always best to be prepared, and ready.