Open House – Do It Right!

Holding an open house can really help you sell your home. A potential buyer will only go through your home once so you really want to make the best impression you can. If you have an agent to help or if you are going it alone as a “for sale by owner” these tips will make a big difference.

The best time to have an open house is Saturday and/or Sunday from 1:00pm to 4:00pm. Make sure you have advertised the open house in all the local papers and that you have plenty of open house signs and flags set up through out the neighborhood. Plan your sign placement before the open house because you don’t want to violate a city ordinances or homeowner’s association rules. You need a lot of signage so many people will show up. Sign placement is very important.

Of course by this time you have already put new paint where it was needed, you’ve cleaned thoroughly and removed all the clutter form your home, garage, and yard. On the day of your open house these additional small details can really make a difference: Make sure the curtains are open and the lights are on in every room. Have soft background music playing. Light the fireplace if you have one. Park the cars away from your house and out of the garage. Water the lawn front and back just prior to the open house starting. Keep pets secure and out of sight. Bake a batch of cookies during an open house or put a drop of vanilla on the oven rack and turn on the oven to 350 degree.

You should put a guest register out so that everyone that views your home can sign in with their name, address, and phone number. You need this information. It is a good idea to call each one later to get feed back, inquire about their intentions, or incase you later change the terms of your sale.

When your guests sign the register you should at that time give them the flyers for your home. This is critical. You must have two flyers. The first flyer shold be about your home and it’s assets. The other flyer should contain financing options. You can actually have both on one sheet by using the front and back. You must have both and here is why.

Home flyer. When people shop for a home by viewing open houses on a Saturday or by traveling with a real estate agent, after the third home, they get details confused between the homes they have viewed. It is a fact. That is why you need a quality home flyer and it should have pictures of both the inside and outside.

Financing options flyer. Potential home buyers are mostly concerned with two issues: how much their payments will be and how much cash they need for the down payment and closing costs. If you are a For Sale By Owner you can get free help from a mortgage broker. Most brokers have “for sale by owner” programs that will help you with flyers and many other things too.

There is just one more thing you should be aware of. It doesn’t happen often but it does happen. Be aware of thieves. Your valuable things should be put away and locked up. Even better, keep them at a friend or family members home.

Holding an open house can be productive so just roll up your sleeves and do it, but do it right. Enjoy.