Open House Industry Best Practices

Adopted: February 25, 1993; Amended: August 2001; Amended: April 2009; Amended October 2012.


  1. While licensees occasionally accompany their customers to an open house to retain control and continuity in what the customer has seen, there are times when a licensee is out with another Buyer, sitting at his/her own open house or unaware that the Buyer has driven through a neighborhood and dropped into an open house. In such cases, and regardless of the reasons for the Buyer arriving alone, the Buyer will have the right to call the licensee of his/her choice after the open house and tell the licensee (s)he wants that licensee to show a house and/or prepare an Agreement.
  2. The licensee sitting at the open house is there:
    1. Voluntarily
    2. To sell the home.
  3. The sitting licensee has an ethical obligation to determine whether the Buyer is subject to an agency agreement with another broker. The sitting licensee is ethically constrained from seeking to enter into contractual relationships with Buyers who are subject to exclusive agreements with other licensees.

Members of the Greater Harrisburg Association of REALTORS® Voluntarily Agree:

  1. The Buyer is free to buy the property from any licensee (s)he wishes to use.
  2. The sitting licensee can, whenever ethically possible, develop a client relationship with all consumers, but cannot force a Buyer to buy the property from him/her.
  3. Licensees that have a business relationship with a Buyer should strongly encourage the Buyer to identify that relationship when visiting an open house.

As a member broker/designated REALTOR® of the Greater Harrisburg Association of REALTORS®, I voluntarily agree to subscribe on behalf of myself and my licensees to the Open House Industry Best Practices outlined above. I further understand and agree on behalf of myself and my licensees that this voluntary agreement does not waive our obligation as REALTORS® to abide by the National Association of REALTORS® Code of Ethics.