Winning agents know that selling homes depends heavily on how well they market listings. This involves several techniques, including hosting an open house. A listing with good staging and professional photography receives more engagement and competitive offers from buyers than one without. In addition to staging and listing images, hosting an open house can further benefit both the seller and the agent. Open houses bring prospective buyers from different levels of the home buying process together under one roof. And while open houses do not typically result in a sale on their own, hosting one is a great way to generate leads and open doors for future business opportunities. Are you in need of some inspiration? Read on for our tips on how to host a winning open house!
Invite your email list
Let your email list contacts be the first to know about an upcoming open house. These contacts will include your leads, previous clients, referrals and sphere of influence. When you send an open house invitation to your contact list, you’re trying to spread the word, not push a sale. Even if they’re not interested, real estate minded people on your list will know others looking to buy. The invite should include listing information, professional images and a call-to-action (this could be asking the receiver to forward it to potential buyers).
Stage the home
First impressions always matter. When it comes time to host a winning open house, guests will make assumptions based entirely on the home’s facade. Before an open house, always determine if the lawn needs a mow and decide if you need to enhance the curb appeal. A little work can make a significant impact. Freshly mowed grass, a power-washed driveway, and some seasonal flowers on the front porch quickly transform a home. Add a new doormat and decorative wreath to make guests feel even more welcome.
Use a professional photographer
Using good real estate photography is key to gaining the proper exposure online. The first step of your real estate marketing strategy must include preparing the listing and hiring a professional photographer for new real estate images. These images will help promote your open house through social media posts, email invites, real estate forums and more. You can also use your real estate images at the open house to show guests some virtual staging examples for each room.
Promote on social media
Social media is a powerful tool for real estate agents. Whether you’re active on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, or all of the above, utilizing social media for real estate is critical. Promote your open house events on social media with compelling photos and videos. Create posts and stories that match your personal brand, getting buyers excited about the new property and . You could even consider embedding a video of the property’s best features. In addition to posting the open house on your social media feed, consider crossposting on Facebook groups and communities. Several real estate groups on Facebook welcome promotional listing posts.
Create an ambiance
Now that you’ve prepped your home, scheduled the ads, and invited your sphere of influence, it’s time to focus on the actual open house. First and foremost, let there be ambiance. One of the best things you can do to improve the ambiance of your home is to let in as much natural light as possible. Open all of the curtains and blinds and turn on the lights. You should also consider playing some soft background music during your open house. This will help to create a warm and inviting atmosphere. Put out snacks and drinks, light a fire if it’s chilly outside, bake cookies – you know the vibes! Finally, be available for questions but make yourself scarce. Don’t make the buyers feel like they’re being followed. The ultimate goal here is to give them the feeling of comfort. Click for more fun ideas to set the scene.
Learn about your guests
To host a winning open house is to host a networking event. This is an opportunity to learn more about potential buyers in your area. Spend some time asking guests questions to understand their wants and needs better. If you expect a busy open house, bring a junior agent along to help greet new arrivals as you mingle. As you strike up conversations with potential buyers, take note of their timelines, must-have lists and ideal neighborhoods. If any of their wish list items are a part of your listing, let them know!
Virtual walkthrough and staging
The real estate industry is pretty tech-savvy. Third-party listing websites and 3D virtual tour platforms are now standard for home buyers, with every property detail accessible online. For motivated buyers who can’t attend your open houses, a live virtual walkthrough can do the trick. Once your open house begins, hop on Facebook or Instagram live and present a walkthrough of the listing. On your virtual walkthrough, engage with viewers and answer questions. Virtual staging helps buyers see a room’s full potential as well. Sometimes, the shape of a space makes it difficult to understand how to place furniture and decorate the interior. Use your tablet to show guests the listing’s real estate images with virtual staging in various interior design styles.
Follow up with leads
Lastly, a successful open house includes following up with your fresh lead list. Those guests who attended your open house are now new leads. Create an email campaign for your open house lead list. The campaign should include at least eight emails to help stay in consistent contact. Throughout the email campaign, thank your guests for taking the time to attend your open house, ask them where they are in the buying process, and provide information about new listings in the area.
Are you feeling inspired for your next open house? Are there some pointers we may have forgotten? Let us know what you think in the comments below!