Monday, October 8, 2018

How to Execute An Open House To Get Multiple Offers

Stop us if you’ve heard this before: The real estate market is hot with extremely low inventories across much of the country and homes selling at historically high prices. A competitive sellers’ market is music to realtor’s ears with real estate seemingly selling itself, but there are proven techniques seller’s agents should employ that help maximize price and the number of offers.

Show Them the Way
open house sign

In order for prospective homebuyers to put an offer on a home, they will need to find the property. It may seem obvious but selling agents should be aware of the various ways to reach buyers. In the days leading to an open house, place directional open house signs around the neighborhood pointing to the open house. Placing these signs at large intersections and arterial streets will provide the most visibility to neighbors who may not actively be looking for open houses. Locals like to talk and may have friends and family interested in moving to the neighborhood. Open house banners and large feather flags placed on the front yard ensures homebuyers will not drive by and miss the open house.

Most new homes come on the market on a Thursday so homebuyers can plan to tour the home on a weekend open house. Online sites are a popular and free way to get the word out for an open house. Add your dates, times and information about the listing on Craigslist, Zillow,, Nextdoor and neighborhood association sites. Small local newspapers are another way to reach a larger pool of homebuyers.

Clean, Declutter & Clean Some More

It takes more than unlocking the door and putting out a plate of cookies to prepare for an open house. Homebuyers stepping through the front door will need to picture themselves living their lives in the home, and the first impression goes a long way. The home needs to be thoroughly cleaned, decluttered, organized and well-staged. The entire house needs to be immaculate; from the kitchen, bedrooms, closets and bathrooms to the basements, landscaping and, yes, even the garage. Professional cleaners and a staging company are huge helps in attracting offers if you’re a pack rat or do not have the patience or time for a deep cleaning. Make sure nothing is broken and everything is in perfect working order. Cracked windows and doors, leaky sinks, and dead lightbulbs will expose the seller’s lack of pride in the home and will turn off buyers.

Similar to a marketing manager identifying a target market to be successful, an effective open house requires the seller to understand the ideal buyer. Thinking about the location of the property and what type of neighborhood it’s in will assist in preparing the listing. Homebuyers looking in an upscale neighborhood will expect higher-end upgrades and features while a home in a hip area appealing to younger buyers needs to ditch the 1970s shag carpet and wallpaper. Updating light fixtures is a relatively inexpensive upgrade that goes a long way toward revamping the style of a home’s interior.

Price To Sell

In may seem counter-intuitive to price a home below market value, but it’s a strategy that can pay big dividends. Listing a home at a lower price will attract more attention, and homebuyers will show up to open houses in droves and create an auction-like atmosphere, often bidding up the price higher than the market value. Homebuyers use online search tools that filter results in $25,000 increments, and by listing the home at the next tier lower will result in more homebuyers and create a feeding frenzy of buyers who think they’ve found the deal of a lifetime. Seller’s agents should be equipped with flyers or brochures including pictures of the house, a list of home features as well as community information such as schools and entertainment options. Never let a buyer leave an open house empty-handed; Sanzo Specialties offers cost-effective promotional real estate products.

Pictures Matter

Educated homebuyers will do their research before mapping homes they will see on an open house tour. If they have a realtor, they will use the MLS portal to investigate properties, and real estate sites such as Zillow and feature image slideshows. You’ll want to highlight the home’s interior and exterior with professional pictures. Employ an experienced professional to take pictures; the photographer will be familiar with all the tools and tricks to show the home in its best light. He or she will likely use a tripod, bring light stands, employ a wide-angle lens to make the space appear bigger and edit the images with advanced techniques. Smartphone cameras are better than ever before, but if you can afford a professional, it’s usually worth the price.

Point Out Selling Points

Real estate agents are salespeople selling the home, but often there are bigger selling points than just the square footage of a listing. Schools are one of the most important factors for families with children when buying a home. A difference of a few blocks can determine which school kids will attend, and we all know the quality of public school education is not equal.

If the home has undergone a recent renovation and home improvements, it will be a strong selling point to communicate to open house visitors. A new roof, major appliances or new home system will give buyers confidence a big replacement cost is decades in the future and not looming soon after closing. Quality of schools, access to public transportation and home improvements are big selling points to buyers, so don’t hold this information back; market it!

The Sanzo Specialties team hopes these tips result in a successful open house and a multiple offer situation. Realizing a multiple offer situation, request the buyers present their highest and best offers by a certain date and time. This will force all homebuyers to show their cards and hopefully not hold anything back. Are we missing any tips? Please share your open house suggestions in the comments!

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