How Realtors Can Get the Most Out of an Open House
When it comes to open houses, real estate agents generally either love them or hate them. To accommodate the new ways buyers search for homes online, traditional selling methods must be reconsidered—and, in many cases, redefined. Even in today’s Internet-based market, most buyers need to physically see a home before making a buying decision. An open house can be a great way to market a home, if done correctly. If you’re a real estate agent, use these tips to improve your open house effectiveness.
Understand how buyers are shopping for homes. Research from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) indicates that 92% of today’s buyers utilize the Internet during their home search, so a listing with high-quality pictures is essential. A video tour is another way to attract more buyers; if they love the home’s online profile, they will likely want to walk through it. An open house is a great way to showcase a home in its best condition and provides a low-pressure way for buyers to tour a home and get a feel for the neighborhood.
Market where buyers are looking. Open houses should target a specific audience based on price range, neighborhood and potential buyers. Marketing on websites like Realtor.com, Trulia, Zillow and MLS will reach a wider audience. Agents can also spread the word through their personal blogs, Twitter, Facebook and other social media outlets. Offering incentives, such as light snacks or lists of local foreclosures, can also help bring in buyers. For any drawing or incentive, keep the focus on the home.
Cater to the neighbors. Neighbors are sometimes seen as a nuisance to an open house. Although they generally aren’t in the market to buy, they may know people who are looking to move or they may be renting in the neighborhood and in a position to buy. A neighbor could fall in love with the home and choose to move right down the street. Bringing fliers to the neighbors’ homes inviting them to the open house will help create a buzz among their contacts.
Provide great information. In addition to property details, include information on schools, places of interest, parks and community attractions. Providing information on recent sales or other open houses will impress buyers and agents alike. Agents are a great resource in finding a buyer. Helping them will help you in the long run.