If you’re a new real estate agent, then it’s likely you’ll soon be hosting an open house for the first time. They’re great ways to market and sell homes while attracting future leads in a low-pressure environment. You can give tours and talk to multiple potential buyers in one day or weekend rather than spreading it out. It takes time to become an expert host, but the best way to get comfortable with open houses is to just do it! Real estate is often learning, practicing, and doing at the same time. So here are 6 tips to help you get more comfortable hosting an open house when you’re just starting out.
Choose the Right Home
Odds are, you won’t be hosting your first open house at your own listing. (If you are, then congratulations)! Ask a more experienced agent in your brokerage if you can hold open one of their listings. Look for a home that is in good condition, is in a good location you’re familiar with and is not a cookie-cutter style. You want people to ask questions so you can practice and engage with them, hopefully leading to an offer or future leads.
Do Your Research
Once you’ve chosen a home to hold open, it’s time to do the research. Get familiar with everything about the home, from the square footage and bedroom-to-bathroom ratio to the property taxes and HOA fees. Compile all the data in a binder to display at the open house, along with comparable properties and points of interest in the neighborhood. Then practice talking about it all so you can have more natural conversations with buyers at the open house.
Market the Open House
If you want people to show up, you’ve got to let them know it’s happening! Create a social media campaign, go door-knocking in the neighborhood, post on community boards, and email your database. If you’re hosting for another agent, then coordinate your marketing efforts. They may have their own email lists and paid ads they already plan on running. And always include the listing agent’s info on any marketing materials you use.
Prep the Home Early
Ask the seller, or the listing agent if they aren’t your client, to prep the home before the open house. This includes decluttering, depersonalizing, and having the home deep cleaned. Arrive early to post directional signs in the neighborhood and set up your info binder, sign-in sheets, and marketing materials. Do a walkthrough of the home to become more familiar with it as some last-minute prep before guests arrive. Consider using wax warmers or baked cookies for a pleasant aroma!
Talk the (Real Estate) Talk
Greet guests as they come in and let them know a few key details about the home, such as the list price, square footage, and number of bedrooms and bathrooms. Then invite them to look around and come to you with any questions or feedback. It’s best not to hover or info dump before they’ve seen the whole house as it can be overwhelming upfront. Make sure to always disclose if you’re hosting an open house for another agent.
Write Thank You Notes
Send thank you emails and/or texts to everyone on your sign-in list no later than the day after the open house. (Copy their agent on the message if they have one). Include a link to the property listing and let them know who to contact for more info or to make an offer. Use this opportunity to start conversations with interested buyers not already working with an agent. These are potential leads for you, so come prepared with your best pitch!
Once you’re comfortable with the basics of hosting an open house, start adding personal touches and trying different strategies. Host as many as you can to find the method that works best for you. The more experience you have with open houses, the more credibility you’ll have when talking to sellers. You’ll both have confidence in your abilities as an expert open house host!
Are you hosting an open house at an empty house? Book Square Foot Productions’ virtual staging services today! We’ll digitally transform each room so your guests can see the home’s full potential, with no imagination needed.