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9 Ways Buyers & Sellers Benefit from Open Houses + How a Realtor Helps

Whether you’re looking to buy or sell, open houses are important for homeowners. In both cases, it can close the deal or break it. As a seller, it can be the difference between closing the sale and can often increase what you get for your home. And even a dealbreaker is a great way to learn more about what you’re looking for when buying a home. Here’s what we’ll cover in this article:

  • Benefits of hosting an open house as a seller

  • How to prepare to show your home

  • Potential drawbacks of your open house

  • Benefits of having a real estate agent for your open house

  • Benefits of visiting open houses as a buyer

If you’re a buyer, jump down here to see why you need to be attending multiple open houses. If you’re a seller, let’s jump right in.

Benefits of hosting an open house as a seller

While it’s not for everyone, the truth is that there can be many benefits from having an open house when selling. It allows people to picture themselves in their future home, allows them to get a feel for the home, and can ultimately get you a better offer. Here are the things you need to know about open houses as a seller:

1. They draw more interest in your home and property

The best way to get people interested in your home is to show it off! Most people want to see themselves in a home, so they will only seriously consider homes that offer open houses. Advertising the open house is also a great way to simply advertise that your home is for sale. Anyone looking in the neighbourhood is likely to see that For Sale sign if you offer an open house.

2. Serious buyers are who come to open houses

Most people don’t enjoy spending their weekends visiting open houses for no reason - they are there because they are interested in buying in your area. Most people are at some stage of the home buying process if they’re giving up their Saturday and Sunday to look at houses, so take anyone who walks in the door seriously.

3. The open house is usually what closes the deal

Any experienced real estate agent will tell you that an open house is usually where sellers find the people who end up buying their home. This is mainly because most people aren’t willing to buy a home without seeing it. That means if you want to sell, you need to show your home off.

4. You’ll be more prepared when moving time comes

Getting rid of clutter and some of your possessions for staging purposes will help cut down on the work when you actually move. Talking to people at the open house will also help you get an idea of when your house will likely sell, and when you’ll be moving, which will help you get things in order before that time.

How to prepare to show your home

Staged bedroom

Having your home professionally decorated can be a great tactic when trying to sell your home. While it is optional, it often increases the value of the sale and can sometimes prompt quicker offers. It’s true that we grow attached to our homes, and this includes the way they are decorated.

If visitors can look past your strangely displayed mug collection, collection of fridge magnets, and can ignore the mismatched furniture you’ve inherited over the years, there is still a problem with having your home decorated the way it is. It’s filled with your memories and it feels like a home - and more importantly, someone else’s home. Homebuyers want to see a home that they can fill with their own memories and experiences rather than one filled with yours.

Using professional decorations can make your house feel less cluttered, can create a fresh, empty aesthetic, and can help elevate the appearance of your home from the perspective of a buyer. And don’t forget to check out our guide to selling your home for tips and tricks, and next steps for getting everything done.

Potential drawbacks of your open house

You should note that there can be some cons to hosting an open house:

1. You’re opening your door to the public

This means you’ll need to give up some of your time, privacy, freedom, and possessions. You’ll want to consider what you have on display during this time, so you’ll likely have to pack away some belongings and you may even need to pay for temporary storage.

2. It’s a lot of work

You’ll also need to put in the work of making your house look pristine, including tidying up clutter and making the the storage areas of your house look empty (so they seem larger and give people an idea of how their things could fit).

3. It can get costly

If you pay for professional staging and storage, 1 or 2 open houses can really add up in terms of the money you’re putting into them (though as many real estate agents will tell you, the selling price you will get will be much better if you make these small investments now).

4. Not everyone will be a serious buyer

Some people are only in the beginning stages of looking for a home, but they attend open houses anyway. Try to talk to people as much as possible to see where they are at, and focus on your best potential leads.

Ultimately, you’ll need to decide if the sacrifices of comfort, privacy, time, work, expenses, and freedom is worth the potential added value or expediency you can get out of the sale.

Benefits of having a real estate agent for your open house

A real estate agent is a great resource to have when showing your home. They can help you with the following things:

  • How to stage your house

  • Ways to show individual rooms

  • Highlight unique features or features in high demand

  • Draw more interest in the home by advertising your open house

  • Help talk to potential buyers during the open house

All of these things increase your chances of having a successful showing and making the sale. Remember that a real estate agent has done this before - likely many times - so take their advice with your open house; it can make a huge difference when it comes to buying or selling, and is one of the many benefits of using a real estate agent.

Benefits of visiting open houses as a buyer

When it boils down to it, a buyer has nothing to lose - and lots to gain - from an open house. Here are some of the main benefits:

Kitchen during open house
1. You can picture yourself inside the home

With an open house, buyer get a chance to see the house, picture themselves inside, and get an idea of the lives they would live in their future home. It makes the process of buying a home more real, and helps you learn more about what you really want in a house, and what you could live without.

2. You can check out whether the ad well-represented the home

Some details of a house are difficult to determine from just pictures you saw. An open house lets you check out everything you think you know about the house from where it was advertised, and truly examine the home in detail.

3. You can discover things you didn’t realize you wanted

The more houses you examine, the more opportunities you get to see unique features of homes in your desired area. You can often find things you love about a place you never thought you would, realize that you care more about some features you didn’t think were necessary, and can notice things that you really don’t like or want in your future home.

4. Learn more about what you can afford

When you visit homes in person, knowing how much they cost, it helps you make a connection between how much a house costs, and what you’re really going to get out of it. Attending an open house is the best way to determine the real value of the homes you’re thinking of buying.

5. You’re less likely to make a mistake with the home you buy

The more open houses you go to, the better prepared you will be to jump on the right home at the right time. If you’re buying the first house you went to see at an open house, chances are, you might not be making the right decision.

You should be seeing upwards of 10-20 homes before you’re even ready to look seriously so you have a better idea of what you want in your mind, and will be able to say yes when you finally attend the open house of your dream home, all while staying within your budget. Make sure to check out our guide to buying a home to make sure you stay focussed on getting what you want.

Because of these things, as a home buyer, it is a great idea to view an open house if at all possible, even if it isn’t the home you think you really love. With all that said, if prospective home buyers have so much to gain from having an open house, then offering an open house would be a great way to finalize a sale.


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