With technology becoming the primary marketing tool of all businesses, the traditional open house is becoming less popular. Open houses will get people through the door and generate leads for the agent, but there are drawbacks that need to be considered. In this article we weigh the pros and cons to help you make the decision of whether or not hosting an open house is right for you.

Pros

Exposure

An essential task for a Real Estate agent is making sure that your home gets maximum exposure. There are many marketing tactics such as ads on the internet, ads in the newspaper, word of mouth, signage etc. Hosting an open house will lead to additional exposure if it is marketed correctly and attract potential buyers who may not know how to start the home buying process. Home buyers need guidance, tips and advice throughout the home buying process and stopping in at an open house may give first time home buyers the opportunity to ask questions to the listing realtor.

No pressure

Although virtual tools on the internet are available, nothing beats seeing a home in person. Open houses are usually very laid back which gives the potential buyers the freedom to browse the home with no added pressure from the home seller. Although immediate decisions may not be made, the potential buyers will have a positive connotation of the house. The listing agent will still be present to answer any questions and will make sure unique qualities of the home are highlighted.

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Convenience

A major benefit of open houses is that anyone can drop in off the street. If potential home buyers are looking in the neighbourhood, there is a good chance that the open house will catch their eye. Open houses are also very schedule friendly and often times there are multiple windows for buyers to view the property.

Cons

Low chance of sale

A very low percentage of homes sell as a result of open houses (3%). The types of people that open houses attract is not usually the crowd who is going to purchase the home. It is beneficial for the realtor to host an open house to gain prospective clients but not necessarily for the seller, so it is important to work with a trustworthy realtor. With private, scheduled showings you have financially vetted buyers coming through your home. Most people who drop in to check out an open house have not even been pre-approved for a mortgage yet.

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Security

It is proven that open houses are a target for crimes such as vandalism and theft because of the lack of supervision in a vacant house. With many people coming and going, crimes are nearly impossible to pin on one person as the tours of the house are self-guided.

Lookie loos

‘Lookie loos’ is a term that describes neighbours who attend the open house just to compare price points of their home, get decoration ideas or are just nosey. These people have no intention of purchasing the house. As an agent, some ways to avoid this are to market the house with a virtual tour and plenty of pictures online so you attract more potential buyers to book a private showing. You could also insist to your agent that people coming to see your property must provide identification upon entry, which is not offensive to prospective buyers, whereas non-serious buyers will be more reluctant to provide personal information.

The decision to hold an open house is up to the seller in the end, but it is important to trust that your Real Estate agent is working in the best interest of their client and will guide you to make the right decision for your circumstance. Book a call with us today if you are planning on selling your home.