Sunday, April 3, 2011

Successful Open Houses-Part 5: Beyond Promotion

When you get the buyers to attend your open house, the next step is to sell and close. Setting the stage is crucial.
  •  Make sure the home looks and feels its best. 
  • Utilities should be on.
  • Home should be a comfortable temperature (even if it is vacant).
  • Have some seating available to buyers and agents.
  • Have a bathroom which is stocked with needed supplies so visitors are welcomed to use it.
  • Have refreshments on hand to slow down your buyers, make them feel welcome and get them to talk.
  • Make sure the owners are no where to be seen.
  • Have brochures and fliers available.
  • Have area and real estate information on hand to assist with the sales presentation.
  • Have a lender available to discuss financing options.
  • Have a licensed real estate agent, ideally the listing agent or someone who knows the area and the home well, hold the house open.  In the hands, the open house can be a detriment.

I do not require people to sign in at open houses.  If they don't want to, then there is no advantage, they will just give you false information.  I always offer it.  And if they prefer not to leave their information, I do ask them for names and make notes from our conversation in case they reappear at some later point.  If they are working with an agent, I ask that they write their names and provide contact information for their agent so I can appropriately follow up later for feedback. 

People who are interested will leave their contact information and tell you how they want you to follow up with them.  I think it goes without saying, follow up when people want you to.  It means they have at least some level of interest in either the home or other services.

If you want someone to leave their contact information, offer them something of value.  This can be anything from a list of future open houses if they are self described "tire kickers" to a gift certificate to a local business that is randomly drawn.  Have a value offering and you'll get contact information.

Read the entire season on having a successful open house by clicking here.

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