The open house: steps for success
Your preparation is done, the house is clean and staged, and the listing is posted. Now it’s time for buyers to see it. Often, the first step to show your home is an open house, a scheduled event when buyers can tour your home. A well-executed open house can generate excitement about the property and, ideally, could lead to one or more offers.
Your real estate agent (if you’re working with one) will schedule, organize, and run the open house, which is typically held on a weekend. Sellers should not be present during the event.
Some tips to help you and your agent prepare include:
Tell your neighbors
Make sure they know when open houses are happening and what to expect. Apologize for extra cars parked on the street and ask them to consider avoiding noisy projects that day. Neighbors can also be potential buyers or can refer your home to friends in the market.
Make plans for pets
Dogs, cats, or other pets should not be present during the open house.6 If you can’t take pets with you while keeping your own distance from the open house, try to find a friend or relative who can take them for a few hours.
Protect your belongings
Remove or lock up any valuables and medication. Your agent probably can’t keep an eye on every prospective buyer at once, so be smart about what you leave out. Your agent can also offer guidance on whether to use or disable security cameras.
After the open house, serious buyers will generally contact your agent to schedule private showings. Talk to your agent about the best way to coordinate these showings. While a good agent will never show up unannounced, try to always keep your home clean, and be ready to vacate the premises on short notice, so you don’t miss an opportunity.