It’s time. Your kids are getting older. You’ve just received a big promotion. Maybe you’re an empty nester. But one way or the other it’s time for a new home.
So you place your home on the market. You have an ad in the paper, and a sign in your yard. What else can you do?
Have you considered holding an open house?
If you get the word out and have a plan for when prospective buyers walk through the door you’ll have an excellent opportunity to meet many potential buyers.
A for sale by owner open house is an excellent low cost way to help you sell your home. Running an open house is a tremendous opportunity to create foot traffic through your home without having to wait for buyers to call and set up a showing.
One of the largest annoyances of a Realtor run open house is that you’ll need to go somewhere else while it’s being held. Plus, if there are multiple open houses being held, your frustration with the whole process can begin to grow. Being displaced from your home for a few hours on the weekend can become very frustrating.
But, because you’re running the open house you will remain in your home during the entire process, which can lessen your stress level.
Ok, an open house sounds like a good idea. How do you get the word out?
- Tell everyone you know. Friends, relatives, neighbors, coworkers. Have I forgotten anyone? Use every tactic you can think of to let people know you’re holding an open house. Email is a very useful tool. Call everyone you know. Even family. Let your neighbors know by stopping by or dropping them a quick note.
- Advertise your open house wherever you’re currently advertising your home. Buyers Guide, newspaper etc. This will ‘cast your net’ further by letting every other potential buyer know about your open house. It’s also important to write a killer description so buyers want to come and see your home in person.
To really help get people in the door offer snacks and refreshments. Believe it or not this is an excellent way to help convince people to attend.
Following are some tips to help you hold a successful open house:
- To make your home look more spacious bring as much light into your home as possible. You can accomplish this by opening all blinds and curtains and turning on all the lights. Pay close attention to lighting your entryway, dining and living rooms.
- Allow buyers to envision themselves living in your home. This can be done by removing any personal items you may have around the house. This would include family pictures, children’s artwork etc.
- Create a welcoming aroma in your home. You can do this by baking cookies or bread. Adding bowls of potpourri to the bathrooms and bedrooms are also easy ways to add a welcoming smell. If you have pets work hard to neutralize any odors, especially litter boxes and keep pets away from any guests.
- Keep the distractions to a minimum. Arrange for your children to visit a neighbor or friend so you’re able to give your full attention to showing your home. Keep the television and radio turned off. Never apologize for anything in your home as well as never make negative remarks about your home. You don’t know what a buyer is looking for, so what you consider a flaw may be exactly what their looking for.
Before the open house starts, you should gather a couple items.
- Blank sales contracts. Make it easy for buyers to make an offer.
- Flyers. Have flyers ready for buyers to take with them. These should contain all possible information as well as pictures of your home. Flyers can be printed directly from your online listing at the majority of national for sale by owner websites.
Above all, make it easy for a buyer to make an offer or to get into contact with you later.
Remember an open house is an effective low cost way to get many people into your home. Even if the person who walks through your home doesn’t make an offer, you never know who they’ll talk to about your home.