Being serious about this whole adulting game, we’ve decided to take the plunge and cut down our avocado on toast intake in order to pay our own mortgage rather than someone else’s. This has meant a LOT of open homing. Unfortunately for us we’re attempting to do this in Auckland and you may have heard that that’s kind of rough right now. Despite this, we’re persevering and still at the point where it’s quite fun. We’ve been to our fair share of open homes by now so thought we’d compile a list of do’s and don’t’s to help you through if you too are trading #brunchlife for #toastathomelife.

Do take your shoes off. It’s just nice manners people. Also on that note…

Don’t wear lace up shoes. Slip-ons are mandatory as I recently found out after nearly putting my back out with all the taking off and putting on palava.


Do take the weather into account. Cold and sunny days are the best for open homing I reckon. You get to see which areas of the house get (or don’t get) the sunlight and also can suss out whether it’s actually warm.

Don’t be fooled by the pictures on the listing.  Tom is much better than I am when it comes to being discerning. I often get fooled by the photoshop efforts and wide angle lenses – it’s key though to read as much between the lines as possible to save yourself a trip (because after the 10th house you’re going to get over this open homing gig real quick).

Do sneak a peek over the fence. Suss out any annoying loud pets (or annoying loud people) and any potential building sites. This last one has burnt us a couple times now and prevented us from falling in love with an otherwise perfect place.


Don’t go to homes out of your budget. It’s just depressing and easy to forget about the hell that it would be trying to make mortgage repayments.

Do take a big old sniff of the place. Smoker currently residing in there? Residual dog smell? That shit is hard to get out – or impossible if the place is so damp you can smell the mould so don’t be fooled by a scented candle and sniff away.


Don’t ignore your gut instincts. If you turn up to a place and the vibe of the area doesn’t sit well with you there’s probably a good reason for it. We’ve turned around after only seeing the driveway of a place for this reason.

Do take snacks with you. Hours of wandering around with no food does not make you capable of good decisions. I could be in a palace but still unimpressed if all I want is a burger.




Don’t drink too many coffees before heading out. Luckily for us we have friends in the area we’re looking who have opened their door for us when we need a pitstop. Not always the case though and popping a squat outside your potential new home is probably frowned upon.


Do you or don’t you take the candy on offer? This one I’m not sure about – is it ok to eat the stuff they put out like a centre piece next to the registration forms? Once there was a place that had a bunch of Favourites (including my fave Favourite of all) on the table. My kiwi politeness took over and I resisted. Then we went to another place that had a bowl full of Whittakers mini slabs but also lollipops – does that mean the candy is only for children? Please someone tell me because this hangry pregnant lady is going to potentially break etiquette and swipe a few the next time opportunity presents itself.

Do have an open mind. I think this is probably the biggest key to open homing. It’s so easy to get bogged down by the negative media around buying your own home these days that the whole thing seems out of reach for this generation. However, as we’ve seen with other friends of ours it’s not actually impossible if you have the patience to persevere… and remember those snacks to help keep up the positivity levels.

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