Are Open Houses a Waste of Time?


Everyone sees signs on the weekend for open houses in their neighborhood. They must work, because who doesn’t like balloons and cookies, right? Here are 4 reasons why open houses might be a waste of time, and the 1 situation where they are still useful.


Open Houses are Primarily for the REALTOR’s Benefit

The majority of visitors through open houses are curious neighbors and “lookie loo” buyers who plan to purchase in 6+ months. You can’t sell your house to these visitors, but any agent would love to meet them. Why? They are the perfect new clients!


They’re Incredibly Inefficient

90% of buyers use an agent to purchase their home. This means serious buyers can already simply access the property when it is most convenient for them, not during a preset open house schedule. This is also most efficient for you, since you only need to leave the house for 30 minutes to an hour, rather than for a long open house.


Open Houses Don’t Sell Houses

If open houses sold houses, homeowners could definitely skip using an agent and save the commission. A seller could hold their own house open 1-2 days per week to save thousands! Homeowners have definitely tried this, and we usually see them listed on the MLS later, where they ultimately sell.


They Create a False Sense of Traffic

While your home is listed, you want to track all visitors to your home (traffic.) When an agent shows your home, you know that there is a qualified buyer who is interested enough to engage an agent and visit your property - it’s a serious buyer. When you hold an open house, you can get a lot people through the house, and it’s easy to forget that most of them are not serious. This means your agent cannot follow up and engage those visitors.. Open houses actually hurt your ability to objectively track your progress.


So when are they useful?

Open houses can be useful to create a sense of urgency for prospective buyers. New listings seem like a logical choice, but there’s already a big sense of urgency for buyers who see new listings. However, if you’ve recently made a price reduction, an improvement to the property, or there’s been a change in the market, an open house can “push a buyer to action” because they think that other interested buyers will view the property at the open house.

If Open Houses are Usually a Waste of Time, What Can You Do?

The good news is that there are proven steps you can take to sell your house for top dollar in less time. Staging & professional photography are incredibly impactful. An aggressive marketing strategy is also crucial It’s also important to understand market conditions when pricing your property & to create a solid listing strategy that takes into account the seasonality of the market.

Eric Bramlett has 14+ Years of Selling Experience Using Proven Selling Strategies.
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