Open Houses

Open House Best Practices From A Realtor’s Perspective

Today we’re going to talk about open houses. Gonna give you two reasons why you should do an open house when selling your home, gonna give you a few the excuses that most agents use when they say whether you should or shouldn’t do an open house, and we’re gonna talk about why you should never ignore someone who is just looking.

Number one: it provides valuable real market input from people actually in the real estate market in that area. This doesn’t matter if they’re “nosy neighbors” or “looky Lou’s”or the people down the street or friends or family, it doesn’t matter. Because all of them are gonna give you feedback. And that feedback is what you need in order to provide the right product and service to the client and to the consumers that you serve. If everybody coming through the house comments that the price is too high, that’s something you should probably pay attention to.

You need to be able to take that information as a real estate professional back to your sellers. And sellers, you need to take heed of this information and listen to that and be able to address that in your marketing plan for how you plan on selling your home. We’ve all been in the store or been some shopping someplace for someone comes up to you and asks you”can I help you,” and your answer is probably “no, we’re just looking. “But you’re not just looking chances are you didn’t just randomly wander into a store for no apparent reason.

You came there for a reason. As the agent holding the open house, it’s important to find out why that is that they came there. It is not sufficient just to say, “how can I help you?”It gives real estate consumers a glimpse into the real estate market. One of the main things that you want to do when you’re selling your house is to generate interest. You want to get people talking about it. Nothing is worse, when you’re selling your house, than to have it be anonymous and have nobody talking about it, and have no story involved with it. You want people to talk about your house. You want people to generate interest.

You want people “sneezers” out there doing their thing spreading the wildfire. Because people fall at different points on the life cycle of buying or selling real estate. Not everybody is that the same point. And as you’ve seen some of my other videos, I believe that most in this industry focus only on those people who are looking to buy or sell right now and ignore everybody else in the cycle. That’s obviously the wrong thing to do and it’s wrong from my perspective.

But I could tell you why and that’s because of my own personal story. My wife and I would come to open houses here in Catoosa County on the weekends. We would make it a point to come up here. We would travel to the wineries. We’d come out here to enjoy the scenery and go to different places and then we try and stop by open houses on our way to and from.

We started very close to Chattanooga and we started moving our way on north and west because that’s where it’s so beautiful out here. That we were drawn to this area and just like” just-looking” to see could we do this? Can we move out here and still work there and still make a living and do all these things? And, well, the answer kept coming back yes yes and yes. But we never would have considered it had we not gone to an open house in the beginning.

Open houses took us from not being in the market to being in the market. And the next thing you know we’ve sold our house in Fairfax bought a house out here. And it’s the best thing that we’ve done, the best move we’ve made as a family. . . ever. Welcome them, say “what brought your open house today?”And you know what, don’t say anything until you get an answer. Agent: “What brought you here?” Guest: “Oh, we saw the sign we’re in the neighborhood. “Agent: “I’d like to ask you a favor. Two favors really, one for me and one for the owners of the house.

If you please sign the guestbook for the seller’s they really want to get an idea of who’s come through their house. This makes them feel a whole lot better. And it makes me feel a whole lot better now that we know that your real live human being that came to this house. And the second thing is, I really need your help in getting feedback about this property. If you could think about a couple things that you really like about this home, and maybe some things that you didn’t like, your overall opinions.

I would really appreciate it if you could share those with me so I can take them back to the seller so we can help them out. I recommend starting the tour downstairs working your way up and finishing on the deck got some lemonade out there and you can enjoy the view. Thank you for coming, and please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. “That’s a little bit different approach than agent: “Can I help you? No? Okay, well let me know if you have any questions. “And that’s the last word said and you go back to your phone back or to your tablet or doing whatever.

Back to watching TV which I’ve seen some agents not even get off the couch while they’re watching TV in an open house. But. . . fine. . . . . Lazy agents tell you that open houses don’t sell houses. Buyers don’t come to open houses. You’re 100 percent guaranteed not to get a buyer for your home because of an open house if you don’t have an open house. 100% guaranteed. You’re also 100 percent guaranteed not to get a buyer from Zillow if you don’t put your home on Zillow. You’re 100% guaranteed not to get a buyer from Backpage or Craigslist if you don’t put an ad on Backpage & Craigslist.

So be aware of what you are getting into when someone says it just doesn’t work. The lazy agent doesn’t wanna spend the money on the marketing, doesn’t wanna take the time to do the marketing, doesn’t wanna spend money on those things are making the open house worthwhile, doesn’t wanna go through the effort up making it a social event that the people can get excited about and generate interest in. They don’t wanna spend all morning putting up directional signs and all afternoon picking them up. I was driving to our neighborhood the other day and this was Tuesday the signs from a Sunday open house we’re still out and way down the road.

There were still directional open house signs pointing you on toward this way even though that open house had ended two days prior. It is ultimately your decision as a seller whether or not you hold an open house. But you need to be aware that you will not get a buyer from an open house if you don’t have one. Greedy agents are looking for one of two things when they hold open houses: they’re looking to generate leads for themselves. Capture as many potential buyer clients as they can so they can put them in other e-mail lists to start marketing to them and doing what they do. or they’re trying to increase the possibility that they can double dip and work both sides of the equation. That is what we call a dual agency. I don’t think dual agency does you as a seller any good and we won’t do it. We’ll refer it out. By representing both the buyer and the seller, in my view, you have changed your representation to neither the buyer or the seller and changed it just to the transaction itself. And that is not what you are paid to do. You’re paid to represent one or the other. That’s my view others take a different view they’re welcome to it.

That’s their business model and this is mine! [lion growling] You as the seller are paying top dollar to have your home marketed. Why would you pay top dollar to have someone”post and pray” or “set it and forget it?” You don’t want to do that. You want to get someone who’s gonna really aggressively pursue that open house. Market it. Create incentives to bring people there and then once they’re there you want to give them something of value. Whether or not they’re looking to buy the particular house, you want that to be an experience that they’ll remember. You want them to talk about that house. You want them to talk about you as an agent, you as a company, but most importantly you want to generate interest in that house because that helps everybody. And if you’re looking for win/win and not just one-sided wins or losses, that’s the way to go.

We have a very specific open house plan, called the “Ruggedize Your Open House. ” If you like to get that, check out the link below and we’ll be happy to send that to you no charge no cost. Even if you don’t use us or can’t use us, you should present this and have this in your back pocket when you’re talking with your agent or you’re interviewing agents.