Make the Most of Your Open House

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Are you ready to sell your home? An open house is the perfect opportunity to show off your space and successfully get a buyer!

When you’re ready to sell, it’s important that you attract as many potential buyers as possible. But as with any form of marketing, a number of tips can increase just how successful your next open house is. As a homeowner ready to make the move, you don’t want to have your house sitting on the market too long; the longer it’s there, the less appealing it looks to possible customers.

Real estate experts implement a number of tips into the selling process to attract the right buyers, especially when it comes to open houses. If you’re ready to make the most of the open house season to sell your home, be sure to incorporate these tips into your process.

Get your house ready!
The first step is to get your home in pristine shape before you invite buyers inside, but there are often some overlooked aspects that have an impact on the success of your open house. Make sure the landscape is clean and any areas that need repainting are completed. First impressions are essential and they matter to potential buyers. Inside the home, make sure carpets are thoroughly shampooed and that all the lights are on to provide a bright, airy ambiance.

The fragrance inside the home is also a key aspect of an open house. Create a welcoming scent that draws buyers in; one trick Realtors use is baking cookies. Keep it simple for buyers and leave instructional notes around the house if you have special or unique features. For example, if you have a gas fireplace, buyers might want to see how easy it is to use; point out where they can give it a try if they’re interested. These tips are especially helpful if you have luxurious accents that add value to the home, such as customized showers or installed surround sound that you’re offering in the sale.

Realtors like to create a positive atmosphere for potential buyers; this puts them in a buying mood! Have complimentary beverages set up or play relaxing music in the background to give buyers a memorable experience as they walk through the home.

Don’t forget security for your valuables and even medications. Move them offsite or lock them up, and make sure buyers are accompanied when they’re in bathrooms and bedrooms.

Market, but don’t be pushy.
The entire reason for holding an open house is to sell it, but don’t appear desperate or you won’t have much success in getting your asking price. Create the illusion of an exclusive open house by leaving the door locked, so that you have the opportunity to greet each buyer at the door.

This serves two purposes; you don’t have strangers walking through unannounced and it gives buyers a chance to interact with the real estate agent or seller. A welcome packet, complete with features and home information, provides buyers with key aspects of the home in an easy-to-read format. It also gives them something to refer to when they’re going over the various open houses they’ve seen for the day.

Real estate agents also suggest placing additional information with the welcome packets that are of interest to potential buyers, such as neighborhood features, nearby points of interest and school district information. These details could be the difference that closes the sale. Additionally, buyers will appreciate the attention to detail and helpful information when narrowing down their options.

Watch for trends.
You might not have a buyer at the first open house, so it’s important to watch for trends to get an idea of what is appealing to customers and what might need some updating. For example, do people lose interest in the home after taking a short tour? This could highlight some issues with the price, location or the overall look of the home. If you see people talking together after taking a tour, it could indicate that buyers are interested, which might help you snag that sale price you want.
The behavior of buyers also provides clues about the competition in the neighborhood. This information is important for pricing, as it could help you determine if your unique features or desirable location allows you to stand firm on your asking price.

Team up with your Realtor.
If you’re present during the open house, be gracious to attendees, but pretend that your agent is a lawyer in a courtroom drama. Don’t answer a question unless the agent gives you the nod. She’s trained to protect your interests and prevent you from revealing sensitive or risky information, such as the reason you’re moving or that the house will be vacant for a time.

Keep a smile on your face, and happy selling! ■

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