If you’ve recently put your home on the market, you may be wondering how to find a suitable buyer quickly and efficiently. While some sellers seal the deal during the first private viewing, others struggle to find a buyer using traditional closed processes. Situations like that are where an open house comes in.
Choosing whether to host an open house is a very personal decision. On the one hand, it could represent a great marketing technique that helps you find a deserving buyer. On the other, it could end up being stressful and fruitless. Weigh up your options carefully before committing to hosting such an event.
What is an open house?
An open house is an event whereby a seller opens their property up to potential buyers for a set period. Visitors can browse the property at their leisure, although most open houses also have realtors on hand to offer guided tours.
The aim of hosting an open house is to attract interest from a wide range of buyers in a relatively short time. Most sellers host open houses on weekends and advertise the event using banners and posters to boost visitor numbers. Some even serve cocktails and snacks.
What are the advantages of an open house?
An open house could help to accelerate the sale of a property in several ways, including:
1. It offers convenience for buyers
Many buyers appreciate the convenience of simply dropping in without having to contact sellers to arrange a private viewing. In fact, open houses often attract passersby who would not otherwise have known about the listing. If you’re hoping to boost views and offer potential buyers an optimal browsing experience, an open house could work for you.
2. It could boost exposure
Maximizing how many people see your property listing is likely to increase competition amongst buyers and ensure you walk away with the best deal. If you’re unconvinced, recent stats demonstrate that 30% of high-end buyers visit open houses.
While listing your property online is a great way to attract attention, it is not always enough to encourage buyers to submit an offer. Hosting an open house will generate a buzz around your property and encourage keen buyers to secure a deal quickly.
3. It could attract attention from brokers, agents, and people in the community
Open houses are not just for buyers. Brokers and agents often work together, attending open houses to see if properties will suit potential buyers. Sometimes, people in the local community attend open houses and pass relevant information to friends and family. Even if you suspect a visitor isn’t interested in purchasing real estate, they could help to spread the word throughout the local community. Think of it as free marketing!
4. Nothing compares to viewing a property first-hand
No matter how many high-quality photos or 3D virtual tours you include in your property listing, nothing will compare to viewing it in person. Hosting an open house is a great way to help people get a feel for your property and assess whether it suits their needs.
What are the disadvantages of an open house?
While open houses work for some sellers, they have a few disadvantages you will need to consider. These include:
1. It could attract time wasters
Newly available homes often attract attention from nosey neighbors. If you go ahead with an open house, prepare because it will probably entice locals looking to compare your property to their own. In a tightly knit community where gossip spreads fast, this may not work in your favor.
2. Security issues
One of the primary concerns associated with opening private properties to strangers is keeping possessions secure. Unfortunately, some visitors may have malign intentions when visiting your property, particularly if it is in a high-end part of town. Real estate agents cannot monitor every person that walks through the door, so sellers must ensure valuables are safely stored away. If this sounds time-consuming and stressful, an open house may not work for you.
3. It could entice unqualified buyers
Unfortunately, you cannot pre-approve visitors to your open house. As such, your real estate agents may have to waste time and effort guiding unqualified buyers around the property. If you’re looking for a way to sell your house without expending too much energy, an open house may not be the best option. Remember – you must ensure your property looks immaculate before an open house event. This will involve a significant amount of cleaning and preparation that you may decide is not worth the hassle.