Agent2Agent in Charlotte>Question Details

Daniel Fisher, Real Estate Pro in Charlotte, NC

What do you do for an open house?

Asked by Daniel Fisher, Charlotte, NC Thu May 26, 2011

Local agents suggested:
•Set out balloons the morning of the open house.
•Bring flyers inside and have a bigger Showcase Packet with unique features HOA fees, local schools, pool/tennis availability, nearest groceries, real estate reports etc for interested individuals.
•Select music to add elegant touch or other atmosphere.
•Have a drawing or raffle (Theater tickets, Starbucks or ??) fill in card and drop it in the basket.
â—¦Include a place to initial that they reviewed the Agency Disclosure Form.
â—¦Offer free CMA of their home to any visitor who checks a box on their card.
•If you take my card and use the QR code on the back to register online, we'll send you______
•Bake some cookies and fresh brewed coffee. Offer pistachios, hot water and tea bags as alternatives.
•Have a branded bottled water (Avery Label) and branded tray of lip balm to go.
Have some cookies! Greet everyone warmly. Do agency disclosure. Make some new friends!

What do you do?

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I would strongly advise you hire a competent pro photographer to shoot your listing & produce a great virtual tour. This serves as a 24/7 open house & will be the best marketing $ you ever spent. Open houses are a relic from the past... Don't take my word for it, check out what the 'heavy hitters" are doing and learn from them...
2 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 26, 2011
Those are all great things. One thing I do that's NOT on the list is I put together a list of other properties for sale in the area, in different price ranges (with my agent branding & contact info). If the buyers don't care for this particular house or are looking in a different price range, maybe they might be interested in another one down the street.
3 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 26, 2011
I am more along the line of Allan and Cal. I do set out lots of signs in the morning and pull my flyers inside, but I have given up with the baked goods. I will occasionally have a bowl of candy, but I find most people don't really care for cookies and it can be a distraction from the house.

I also do what Sally suggests, but I usually have one for other properties in the area that are the same price range and another one that has all the open houses in the area with a map to each.

I like some of the suggestions above and would be curious how they work.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu May 26, 2011
A bit too much window dressing for me. Flyers, Guest List, Signs to the house & Sign in Sheet. Once in awhile I give out some of my pens as well(pens, magnets, calendars)
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu May 26, 2011
Daniel you do a Great Open House from the sounds of this. The Raffle idea and free CMA are a nice touch I will add them to my list.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Apr 17, 2013
I work, engaging with each and every visitor and show them the home in hopes of selling it during the event. There is a phrase in the biz, "sitting an open house". That is what I do NOT do. It galls me when I walk into an open house to find the agent chatting on the phone and gesturing for me to walk the home on my own.
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 6, 2012
I have on hand a "Market Summary" for the prior month for the zip code where the property is located. The summary is prepared by my marketing department and includes area statistics and county statistics with my contact information. It has been well received in that it gives the visitor a quick market overview.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 6, 2012

You asked a question and also answered it with great information. Since the objective is for individuals to ask questions that they are seeking the answers for(from others) this post is likely more appropriate for the trulia blog section.


0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 6, 2012
I find good signage brings the most people to an open house in my area. I've never had a listing where I had to have dancing clowns to get people through the door, thankfully. I'm all aboput presentation so I try to create a warm an inviting atmosphere on the interior of the home. You have to do the best you can with the homes existing features and really try to showcase the important ones. A buyer buys with emotions so I want to engage their senses when they walk through the door

0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 6, 2012
Sounds like Team Work, Bribery (the cookies:) and most important Branding! The visit needs to be memorable. When they leave they need more then a card, they need to remember your contact. I send them off with a pen with on it.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 6, 2012
We have built our entire team and business off open houses and continue to have it be a large part of our business (roughly 25% for 2012).

A new technique we have used is what we call a Showcase Open (typically the 1st open on a property). We will mail out invites to 100+ neighbors, call roughly 500 neighbors, have coffee, cookies and a gift card drawing at the event. The last showcase open we did, we had 50+ groups come through and had 3 agents staff the open - it was great!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 5, 2012
Open Houses are an incredible resource for those who understand the demographics of those who will be attending. As we all know, not every house is an open house candidate. Choose correctly.

Every adult attendee to your open house must make five critical decisions every year. Why not provide something of value to aid them in achieving their goal or solving their problem. Make sure you have a clear vision for the purpose of the open house, have real goals and tools in place to allow you to know if your OH was a success. A sign on the street and a tray of cookies hardly qualifies as a strategy. If you are carrying the baggage of your 1980 open house expectations, then relic may be appropriate term for the agent, not the practice. Fortunately, as the number of agents not doing open houses increase, those who do them benefit more.

Open houses provide a blank slate for unbelievable community engagement and value based relationships. Let your vision and imagination create something exciting.

On a serious note, you must never do an open house alone. When you've created the right formula you will most certainly need help. Consider the logistics of having a conversation and getting the names and contact information of 25 people in 3 hours. Get your open house team together with clear task assignments. What tools do you have in place to allow attendees to passively indicate their needs? Are the follow-up mechanisms anonymous and perceived safe by the attendee?

The magic key to success is knowing what an OPEN HOUSE IS NOT!

NOTE: In Palm Harbor and Dunedin Fl there may be a more diverse group of attendees than perhaps would be anticipated in Elmyra Ny. Please consider, I may be in a unique environment that is more conducive to having more homes that are qualified open house candidates..
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 27, 2011
In addition, pre-marketing of event, sending out invitations to neighbors, create a bit of buzz!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 27, 2011
Those are some great tips for doing an open house. Make sure that you have plenty of signs directing traffic to the open house.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 27, 2011
Do all the things that are cited before and also prepare the home with a nice plug in, candles or bake some cookies . That will get to homebuyers faster than anything else. Especially air out basement areas and attics.
Also provide information which you gather about the area and schools -Really highlight the Home....
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 26, 2011
If I ever have one (I seem to be a perpetual buyers' agent)...then I would:
-set out balloons
-make sure there are fresh flowers or a fruit bowl
-set out some mini water bottles and a plate of candies
-make sure the home is presentable (even clean it)
-spray it down with Febreeze and light a few candles (that I supply)

It's all about staging and mood!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 26, 2011
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