We recently sold our home. It was quite an adventure! For the next few Mondays I’ll be posting about the experience. What surprised me. What worked for us and what didn’t work. Today’s post is about open houses.
Four years ago, when I was putting my house on the market, I was told by real estate agents that open houses weren’t a good idea.
“The only people that go to those are your neighbors.”
“They just take up time. I’ve never had a sale from an open house.”
“If people want to see the house, they’ll have their real estate agent show it to them. Why waste time on people who aren’t serious?”
When we sold our house earlier this year, our real estate agent was of a different opinion. “We’ll have open houses once a week. It really helps.”
She was right! Having open houses helped us in a number of ways.
- Our buyers saw the house for the first time at an open house. To be honest, I’m not sure if they ever came back for a second look. They liked what they saw and they made an offer within a few weeks of attending the open house.
- These days, technology enables buyers to do a lot of their own legwork. Real estate listings at several popular sites now contain open house information. Buyers can examine listings and plan to go to open houses all on their own.
- We got valuable feedback during the open houses that kept us going. Selling a house is such a difficult process that anything that gives you hope, encouragement or the will to continue is a good thing. Think I’m being dramatic? If so, you haven’t sold a house recently.Visitors said they like the look of the house. We were very gratified to hear that two women looking at the house couldn’t believe we still lived there. “Where are all their things?”We knew we were on the right track.
- Our real estate agent received valuable market information. One visitor said that he liked the look of the house, but he couldn’t buy it until his house sold. His house had been on the market for a few years. While there had been potential buyers, none of them made it through the financing process.We learned that finding buyers with strong finances was key to a successful sale.
- In the future I’ll write more about house showings. They were necessary. We were lucky to have them. They were by far my least favorite part of the entire process. Having open houses gave real estate agents the opportunity to show the house without requesting a special showing.
Are open houses a good thing? You bet!