If you are a For Sale By Owner or if you have your home listed with a real estate agent you will probably want to conduct several open houses so people can view your home. You only get one shot at every potential buyer that views your home so you want to do it right the first time.
The best time to have an open house is Saturday and/or Sunday from 1:00pm to 4:00pm. Make sure you have advertised the open house in all the local papers and that you have plenty of open house signs and flags set up through out the neighborhood. You may need permission for the placement of some of your signs so do your homework before the day of the event. It’s a sad thing to go to the bother of an open house and have no one show up. Sign placement is very important.
Of course by this time you have already put new paint where it was needed, you’ve cleaned thoroughly and removed all the clutter form your home, garage, and yard. On the day of your open house these additional small details can really make a difference: Turn on lights in all rooms and open blinds to let in as much light as possible. Have soft background music playing. Light the fireplace if you have one. Park the cars away from your house and out of the garage. Water the lawn front and back just prior to the open house starting. Keep pets secure and out of sight. Bake a batch of cookies during an open house or put a drop of vanilla on the oven rack and turn on the oven to 350 degree.
Have a guest register set out upon entry and have every potential buyer and/or warm body that comes through the door fill it out. You need this information. It is a good idea to call each one later to get feed back, inquire about their intentions, or incase you later change the terms of your sale.
When your guests sign the register you should at that time give them the flyers for your home. This is critical. You must have two flyers. One quality flyer about your home and it should have pictures. The other flyer should contain financing options. You can actually have both on one sheet by using the front and back. You must have both and here is why.
Home flyer. When people shop for a home by viewing open houses on a Saturday or by traveling with a real estate agent, after the third home, they get details confused between the homes they have viewed. It is a fact. That is why you need a quality home flyer and it should have pictures of both the inside and outside.
Financing options flyer. People in the market to buy a home are interested in two things: how much their payments will be and how much cash they need for the down payment and closing costs. If you are a For Sale By Owner you can get free help from a mortgage broker. Many have free FSBO programs and will actually create both flyers for you.
There is just one more thing you should be aware of. It doesn’t happen often but it does happen. Be aware of thieves. Put your valuables away and keep them out of sight. Even better, keep them at a friend or family members home.
Holding an open house can be productive so just roll up your sleeves and do it, but do it right. Enjoy.