How to Prepare for a Successful Open House
An important piece of marketing when listing your home is working with your agent to schedule open houses. This allows for many people to come through your home at one time, and it allows your agent to help showcase the home to make a lasting impression. Here are some helpful how-to tips of how to set up your home for a successful open house that leaves potential buyers impressed.
1. Keep it Clean – The cleaner your home is, the better. Make sure you have dusted throughout the house and scrubbed the showers till they sparkle. Pay extra attention in the kitchen and the bathrooms as these can often be areas that are make it or break it aspects for potential buyers. This is also the time to clean the moulding, the walls, and anything else that is not usually tackled on a weekly basis.
2. Get Rid of Clutter – Declutter by removing seasonal items (coats and holiday decorations), organize closets and storage, and put away distracting knickknacks. Doing all of this will allow potential buyers to visualize the potential for their personal items in the home and see all the wonderful features your home has to offer.
3. Depersonalize – We think your children, pets, and family are lovely! However, a potential buyer wants to see what the home could look like for them. Get a head start on packing and cut down on the personalized items in your home (i.e. photos, cards, papers hanging on the fridge, etc.). Your home will seem more open, inviting, and it allows potential buyers to imagine their family in that space.
4. All of the Lights- No one wants to walk into a dark, dimly lite room, especially if they are trying to envision themselves living there. Open up your curtains, blinds, and turn on all the lights. A home that is cheerful and bright is more likely to leave a pleasing, happy impression on a buyer than one that is darker and dim.
5. Do I smell cookies? – Who does not love the smell of freshly baked cookies? If you are able, make a small batch of cookies before the open house for your potential buyers to enjoy both the smell and the taste. If you cannot, buy some store bought cookies and light a yummy scented candle before the open house, then blow it out before you leave. Having a familiar smell, like fresh baked goods, makes it feel homey and comfortable for a potential buyer.
6. Stage your home – Hanging the nice towels in the bathroom and kitchen and setting the table as if you were sitting down for a nice meal are two ways you can “stage” your home without breaking the bank. Buyers will walk into the home better able to visualize and the small, pretty details will help make your home stick out from all the others.
7. Is it broken? – Potential buyers are going to look in all the nooks and crannies of your home. Ensure that anything obviously broken is repaired prior to allowing them into the home. Things like leaky faucets, burnt out light bulbs, broken windowpanes/windows, and slow running drains are things people are sure to notice during an open house.
8. Pet Policy – Not all buyers are pet-friendly or they may have allergies, and not all pets are human-friendly. Make sure to remove your pets from the house during the open house timeframe. If you are unable to remove them, restrict them to a less-trafficked space in the house.
9. Leave – While we certainly like you a lot, potential buyers are going to be more comfortable when looking around and asking questions if you are not standing off to the side. This is a perfect time to run some errands, visit a family member or friend, spend some time outside at a park, or take the kids somewhere fun. Your agent will be sure to showcase the house well and highlight its’ best features to all potential buyers coming through the open house.
10. Trust Us – Your agent is here to help present the house at its’ best! The Geenen Group puts out signage directing to your open house, puts your open house on the most popular listing websites (including social media), and provides both informational sheets along with beautiful feature sheets with pictures of your home for potential buyers to take. These things help draw in potential buyers and put your home in the best light for selling quickly.