You’ve probably heard of an open house as selling tactic in homes today. Welcoming several buyers under one roof invites buyers to scout the home and mingle with the agent. Common open houses go through steps to ensure the one to three-hour browsing event begins and ends on the right note. Here are some tips to make sure yours is ready for buyer’s perusal.
No buyer will purchase a dirty or smelly home. Clean every room before an open house. Decide between manual cleaning and hiring a cleaning service. Manual cleaning involves (but not limited to) carpet cleaning, debris and trash removal, sweep/vacuum, window washing, scrubbing, and sweeping. Remove smelly items from the premises and give curb appeal to the home’s outer appearance. A cleaning service cleans better than manual cleaning, but for a price. Never allow potential buyers to leave due to uncleanliness.
Sellers must remove possessions from the now-former home. Nothing connected to you should remain in the home, including wall art and drawer/cabinet possessions. This allows buyers to view and visualize the home freely without distraction. Therefore, declutter the home. Move everything to your new home, a friend’s home, or a storage unit. Make sure minimal furniture still shows what each room is capable of.
Homeowners could stage the home, but their decor may not appeal to all homebuyers. A realtor’s touch is better due to their impartial objectivity. Real estate agents use effective staging techniques to attract the most varied buyers. Neutral colors, simple furniture, simple layout, and less clutter transform the home from ‘your home’ to ‘the buyer’s home’ in hours.
Buyers need advanced notice to squeeze the open house around their busy lifestyle. Therefore, advertise the upcoming open house on the multiple listing service (MLS), general real estate websites (Zillow, Trulia, Movato, etc.), newspapers, social media, neighborhood flyers, and email lists. In addition, place signs on the property and near busy streets. Non-buyers will use word of mouth to inform buyers in their circles about the open house. Maximum exposure brings maximum buyers to the property. Be sure the time slot will fit with most schedules as well.
The transformation should indicate to buyers the home is not his or hers anymore. When buyers view the home, a seller hovering, harassing, or instigating makes buyers feel uncomfortable. Afterward, you wonder why the home remains on the market. Successful open houses occur because the seller isn’t present. Leave buyers alone. Leave the house. Take your pet too. Stay gone until the open house is complete.
The open house is a difficult, yet necessary process in the real estate selling game. A successful one brings eyes to the property along with bids. It eventually leads to a successful sale.