The National Association of REALTORS® did a full analysis and found that less than 1% of homes were sold with the buyers being acquired at an open house. So the answer is no, right? Actually, the true answer is sometimes. Yes, 1% is a very low number and most real estate agents knowing this hold open houses strictly to gain new clients, not necessarily to sell your home. We actually have had a lot of luck selling homes with open houses and have done just that on numerous occasions. For it to be truly successful, it needs to be a strategic decision for the right house with the right criteria. Many open houses result in just nosey neighbors coming over, visitors who are just looking for decoration ideas, people just looking to get out of the house on a Saturday afternoon, and sometimes no one at all. So how do we determine when it is strategically wise to hold your house open?
First off, what makes an open house successful? In our opinion, a successful open house doesn’t necessarily mean that the home sell that day. Our ultimate goal is of course to do so, but our larger goal is to create hype and increase overall interest in your house and your neighborhood. This usually will at least get people talking about your home to friends and family, often resulting in increased showings and ultimately a sale.
Location is one of the biggest factors influencing the success of an open house. We have found that if your home is more than 3 turns from a major road, success rate reduces drastically. The home also needs to be in a desirable area that people are drawn to. Additionally, an area with a lot of foot traffic is the best case scenario!
An open house is always more successful if your home has unique features. If your home is the same as every other home in your neighborhood, you are wasting your time with an open house. An open house can be used to draw people into your home to see how rare and special it is. A really unique home will create a lot of buzz and excitement.
We stated before that the neighborhood needs to be desirable and well located, but it also needs to have nice features. Does your community have a Recreation center like Reunion, a pool, parks, or etc… The goal is to draw people into an area they already desire and to expose them to the neighborhood features that they may not be aware of. They may know the community has a pool, but have they seen it, do they know how nice it is?
We also hold our open houses at times when we know there will be increased traffic. Is there a fair, parade, or farmers market happening soon? What time does the church on the corner let out on Sundays? Are there popular lunch spots close by? Timing can be one of the main factors determining the success of your open house. As the cliche goes, timing is everything!
If your home meets the above criteria and it is strategically advantageous for you to hold an open house, it needs to be advertised. Advertising takes many forms, but the two that work the best are internet ads, and signage. When we hold a home open, we advertise that open house to over 100 websites in advance. This is very important, because we know that 99% of all people looking to buy a home are searching online. We also make sure to post clear and concise directions to the home, a factor that is often overlooked! The second ad type is signage. Open house signs need to be placed everywhere possible. We use an average of 10 open house signs with directional arrows for every open house we hold. The more signs, the more people will see it and find it. We advertise open houses in other ways, but these two are far and beyond the most successful.
So there you have it. If your home meets the above criteria, is advertised correctly, and you have an agent that will work to sell your home (not to gain clients) then your open house will be successful. If not, then you will most likely be disappointed and will have wasted your time.
Here at CO Listings, we don’t do things unnecessarily or for selfish gains; we are very strategic about our actions. Bottom line, we help sellers sell their homes for more money and less headache. We won’t kick you out of your home to hold an unsuccessful open house just because we want you to feel like we are doing something (unfortunately, a common practice). We are always open, honest and strategic with what we are doing for you, to sell your home. Contact one of our agents today to discuss how you can be strategic with the sale of your home.