Prep the Perfect Open House
Hosting an open house is a great addition to your marketing campaign and an amazing opportunity to showcase your property to prospective buyers and other realtors. While we can’t control certain things, like the weather, there are a few ways to ensure that your open house is worth your/your agent’s time, and to help it go as smooth as possible:
This one should be a no brainer. Your open house is a small window of time to gain exposure and showcase your home to its fullest potential - A.K.A… it should be spotless. Do the dishes (and put them away), wipe the counters, clean the floors and wash the windows! Don’t leave clothes (dirty or clean) laying around, make the beds and empty the litter box. Don’t cut corners here - people are far more likely to fall in love with your home if they aren’t stepping over your things or wondering what is stuck to their sock. Also, don’t leave this for the hosting agent to do, because they probably will, and that’s not really fair.
If you notice any foul odours, left over smells from last night's dinner, a full garbage, etc. do your best to crack a window, light a candle, spray some Febreeze, bake some cookies…. You get the point. You want it to smell good in there.
Leave the House
This one should also be a no brainer but sometimes it isn’t obvious to all Sellers. It is our job to sell your house, so trust we will do our best to get that done! People generally don’t want to go through someone else's house while the owners are there, and it creates an uncomfortable situation for everyone. Go get the groceries, grab a coffee, or better yet take the dog for a walk because it is best to have pets out of the house too!
The reality is, you are selling your house and if someone is actually serious about buying it, they are going to do more than just walk through the rooms. Prospective buyers often look in kitchen cabinets, closets and storage spaces, so do your best to make these look as neat as possible…. If your plan to tidy up is to just shove everything in the closet in a rush (like in the movies), unfortunately, that probably isn’t the best solution.
As mentioned above, curious visitors and prospective buyers will be opening up doors, and since it is awkward and a little creepy to follow people through the entire house during an Open Houses, it is in your best interest to hide or lock up your valuables. While we like to think we can trust everyone, it is better to be safe than sorry.
Actually Have an Open House
Okay, that last one made it seem a little risky but hosting an open house is a great decision and we recommend our Sellers do it whenever possible. We want to sell your home for you and this is another opportunity for exposure.
Timing is Key
The most important weekend to host an Open House is the first weekend that it hits the market - this is when you are most likely to get serious buyers viewing your home whether they are with their Realtor or previewing it before a private showing. Talk to your agent about when you want to host your Open House to maximize its potential.
That's your agent’s job! At Urban Upgrade, we will post your open house on MLS, our website, Kijiji and a variety of other social media outlets to ensure that people know about it. It is our goal to get as much traffic through as possible so that we can brag about your house to everyone.
Make Sure The Agent Knows Their Stuff
On that note, make sure the agent hosting knows exactly what they should be highlighting about your home and neighbourhood to prospective buyers. At Urban Upgrade, we are big fans of hosting Open Houses and we know to do our homework first. We generally don’t like to follow guests through the house, so that they can take their time and feel comfortable, but we always take the time to point out the most important features, and are always ready to answer whatever questions come at us… If we don’t know the answer, we will make sure we find it!