Do "OPEN HOUSE" on the weekends really benefit the seller? Do you recommend doing the Open House? I live in Blackhawk (Westside).

Asked by Janice, Madison, WI Sat Nov 20, 2010

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Becky Alexander’s answer
Becky Alexan…, Home Seller, Mount Horeb, WI
Sat Nov 20, 2010
Open Houses can and do work, but I would suggest you the you email your pictures, video, and website to anyone and everyone you know. If someone is ready and able to buy they will look at your pictures and video and contact or work with a Buyer's Agent to purchase the home. I do not know exactly where you live, but the Blackhawk area has homes at a price point that you would probably have a buyer that is working with a Realtor. As mentioned hunting and shopping season, Packer games, and the holidays are going to be tough to compete with this time of year.
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1 vote
Donna Hermsen…, Agent, Madison, WI
Sat Nov 20, 2010
Open houses are not a sure thing but in this market I would try anything that would help get buyers through your home. We have sold several homes via an open house. Many buyers are out looking and they sometimes find a home they like walking through an open. I do however recommend not having too many opens close together. It gives the impression that the home has been on the market much longer than it actually has. I say no more than one every three weeks.
Good Luck!
Donna & Dan
0 votes
Don Maclary, Agent, Virginia Beach, VA
Sat Nov 20, 2010
An open house gets people in to see it. More often it benifits the agent, BUT if its the right house at the right price it may sell to an open house visitor.
3 weeks ago I did an open house on a new listing. I picked up a listing of another from someone who came through. agent benifit. Week 2 did another open house same place. A buyer came to see it that was looking at another one in the same development. That Monday their agent brought an offer. SOLD in 2 weeks.

So YES open house benifits both the agent and the seller.
1 vote
Bob Tarantino, , Wisconsin
Mon Jan 31, 2011
Hi Janice!

In my opinion Open Houses are a waste of everyone's time. Serious buyers will most certainly schedule an appointment to see your house. Anyone can tell you a story about how a buyer from an open house ultimately made the purchase. I'm just willing to bet that buyer would have seen the property anyways - and still bought the house.

Join us Saturday mornings from 9am-10am on WISN (AM 1130) for our LIVE radio show. You'll get a lot of helpful information and maybe even some solutions:)

Bob Tarantino
(262) 732-5802
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0 votes
Kay Gupta, Agent, Madison, WI
Thu Dec 9, 2010
Open Houses can and do work if publicized well. The important part is it should be staged and presented well with perfect pricing for the neighborhood. In selling anything product pricing presentation and marketing all need to be there. So open house is a part. I know some buyers just goes in open houses, like just looking point of view and then may like it so much that they are the buyers.

So Yeah well publicized open house do work.
If you are planning to sell your house yourself you may try our companies limited service MLS listing. you can call me or send an email for more information
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0 votes
Edith Karoli…, Agent, Winnetka, IL
Mon Nov 22, 2010
You are talking about open houses for the buying public, well different areas, different counties, towns are different, in general though, because of the availability of properties on the internet to the buying public, they browse the internet look at descriptions, and inside and outside photos until they find what they like or a few, then they usually connect with an agent, buyers agent, who will then assist them not only in viewing the properties they are interested in, finding them additional ones, and guiding them through the entire process.
A Sunday open house rarely brings the buyer for the property..... But there is always the exception to the rule, but once one or two weekend open houses have been held and the weather was good and nobody shows up, then everybody gets a hint....

sometimes if there are several open house scheduled in a neighborhood, then it may be a good idea to hold one as well, more possibility of people to drive around to see one and may look at another....

An occasional Weekend open house to see, is fine, but in this buyers market with soooo many properties available, Buyers have a lot to look at, and it just seems easier and faster for them to do their initial searches on the internet and then look at the few they like....

Some brokers open houses on touring days may be helpful in the beginning or after major price reductions to encourage agents with buyers to preview homes and make it easy for them to do so.

Good Luck to you
Edith YourRealtor4Life! and your Chicago Connection
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0 votes
Jon and Donna…, Agent, Middleton, WI
Sun Nov 21, 2010
Hi Janice,

Open houses can be hit and miss but remember it only takes one buyer. I have my houses open as much as possible . . . and yes, an open house can benefit the agent as much as the seller because it does allow agents an opportunity to meet new buyers. But another home down the street may encourage a buyer to look at your home. All in all, I suggest open houses as much as possible. Make sure your agent knows how to market and host an open house......successful open houses are hosted by agents that understand the market and understand the pros and cons of the home they are showing. Knowlege is key.

Best of Luck
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0 votes
Keith Sorem, Agent, Glendale, CA
Sat Nov 20, 2010
A few points that I think were overlooked:
According to NAR polls, the buyer for your home will be brought by another Realtor 90% of the time, so as a home seller that means:
1. Property is accessible (open houses make it "easy" for buyers to see your home)
2. Realtors bring the buyer, so if you are NOT getting showings then that means that they Realtors do not think that your home is "worth" showing
3. Showings with no offers means that BUYERS think your home is priced too high to write an offer

According to the same polls, most homes are found by buyers on the Internet, very few buy JUST from an open house. So open houses should be a PART of the marketing plan, but not THE single item to get your home sold. For most Realtors Open Houses are a way to find buyers that want to buy a home, so it is important for buyers to see what is on the market.

See the link below for facts about your market/.
0 votes
Voices Member, , Boston, MA
Sat Nov 20, 2010
As a seller any opportunity to have buyers come through your home should be explored. Your list agent will be more knowledgeable about the home and its selling points and will then have the opportunity to speak directly to buyers coming through. A good list agent will be able to highlight all areas of the home including those which are not immediately obvious. Recent updates and upgrades, services, where the sun shines in in the morning -all these things are of interest to a buyer and not fully covered in data sheets.
Granted open houses are at the mercy of popular football games and the weather but it is worth trying at least one soon after listing.
Blackhawk may have a number of homes for sale and you have plenty of competition but -you only need one buyer to buy your home. Look for them wherever you can.
0 votes
Dan Tabit, Agent, Issaquah, WA
Sat Nov 20, 2010
An open house can be useful if your agent works it well. I've gone into some where agents were totally uninterested in meeting me, showing the home or doing much other than watching the clock. These are a waste of everyone's time.
If your agent takes the opportunity to present your home to everyone who comes through, highlighting the features that may not be as apparent to a buyer’s agent, you could have some success. There are no guarantees, but I've sold several of my listings as the result of my efforts holding them open, sometimes I get the sale, sometimes the buyer brings back their own agent, but either way my seller wins.
I don't recommend doing too many however. Every weekend is a sign of desperation and may inhibit other showings.
0 votes
Gregory Fisc…, , Madison, WI
Sat Nov 20, 2010
Hi Janice, While only 5% of home sales are by open houses that still means of 20 qualified buyers, 1 might make an offer. A strategy to get those 20 (or 40!) buyers is to coordinate your open house with others in the neighborhood to create a draw. And always welcome the nosy neighbor. If your home is priced right, the word will get out.
0 votes
David B. Zwi…, , Madison, WI
Sat Nov 20, 2010
I've seen sales stats indicating from one to five percent of house sales are the result of open houses. They are generally regarded as a client lead generating tool for agents more than an effective property marketing tool.

That said, in the current market for lower-end to mid-range property I might give it a try.

Be sure to secure all valuables (jewelry, prescription medications, checkbooks, wallets, etc.) and be aware that there have been many reports of break-ins lately. An open house would be a convenient way for a bold burglar to determine the risk vs. reward of targeting your property.
0 votes
home buyer, , Chicago, IL
Sat Nov 20, 2010
It's hard to say. Occasionally you will get a buyer that way but it's rare. Mostly nosey neighbors come in. In my opinion they aren't of much value to anyone but the agent holding the open house. They can potentially get new buyers that way. I don't actually recommend open houses.
0 votes
Laud, , Fitchburg, WI
Sat Nov 20, 2010
The quick and easy answer is "yes".

More on the topic runs to such things as : the more people that see your house, the better. Do you try on several pairs of shoes before buying? Are there more than just nosy neighbors looking? ( I hope so). Can you gauge the demand for your house by Open House traffic? (Yes)

Is it like Speed Dating for Realtors? yes...but if you want to be pro-active, maybe save yourself some showings during the week, maximize exposure to potential buyers....have an Open House. Of course, it IS a Packer Sunday so don't get your hopes up too far.
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