Selling a home is always a challenging prospect, especially as the longer it takes to sell your home the longer it takes for you to move into your new home. Persuading potential buyers to agree to a final price on the house and sign their names on the dotted line can quickly become a very vexing task. Hosting an open house offers one very effective way for such buyers to actually see the house with their own eyes and experience up close what it has to offer. This allows the house to tell more about itself than a thousand pictures ever could.
However, you still need to raise awareness that you’re hosting an open house to begin with, and that can be hard to come by. While going through a real estate agent is one solution, this also means you end up with fees and owed payments to them as well. Some homeowners are fine with this, others however wish to keep control of both the advertising and all proceeds made from selling the home. Alternatively, new agents looking for new ideas on how to advertise their own open house events may find this list useful too!
There are a number of ways an open house can be advertised, and it’s to your good fortune that many of them are neither complicated nor expensive. It just requires a bit of planning, and a bit of investment of time and energy.
Make an Advertisement Online
The cheapest and easiest way to advertise an open house is to go online and make an advert on an appropriate website. The problem here is that there are so many places to choose from, so make sure you decide wisely before uploading your household details to ensure you get the most bang from your buck. Social media is also a great place to advertise, so be sure to make a page on Facebook advertising your house and allowing a space for interested parties to contact you for more information about how and when to attend.
Those already engaged in real estate may also find a very useful tactic in sending out e-mails to client lists. Even if the e-mail is deleted immediately, you’ve still made the recipient actively respond to the e-mail itself. To make it seem less like spam, try to frame the e-mail as a semi-formal invitation to an organized event. Include as many details as to what will be going on at the open house as possible, such as food being served or activities for children to keep them from getting bored. Such things will entice potential visitors more than a vague general notice of the event.
Put Up Signs and Banners
Around the day of the event, be sure to erect plenty of signs, banners, and custom flags detailing the open house and when it is. You want to draw people in, and nothing does so than a well-positioned and designed flag fluttering on the front yard. Everyone is made curious by a sign, and in this business you want to attract every nosy neighbour you can find in the area.
Of course signs are useless if they’re not used properly. Be sure to invest in a good, bold design that catches the eye and retains attention, and that all available space is used effectively. You want to display as much information about the open house as possible, but at the same time you don’t want it looking too busy and crowded. Likewise, be sure the sign is eye-catching, yet not distracting. You don’t want a lawsuit because your advertising accidentally caused a car accident. There is such a thing as drawing the wrong attention!
Be sure that the sign is well placed, as well. It wants to be prominently displayed so that it’s clearly visible and legible from the road. Your best bet therefore is to place your signs on the mailbox, on the drive, or as close to the street as you can on the yard. To make sure the sign works, hop into the car and drive at the speed you’d usually take down that stretch of road. How clearly can you see and read the sign from your car’s vantage point?
Invite the Neighbours to a Party
You may be surprised to find that some of the most eager buyers for your home may be living just across the street from you. Whether it’s because you have a nicer architectural style, a nicer back yard, or easier access to some public facility, your neighbours may have been enviously eyeing your property for a while.
As such, hosting an open house party is a great way to bring their attention to the fact that you are indeed selling and offer them an opportunity to see the property up close to help them decide whether or not the grass truly is greener on the other side.
Put on Your House’s Best Face
A new lick of paint on the walls and the picket fence. New, clean curtains in the windows. Fresh, watered flowers and well-trimmed hedges in the yard. A fresh cut lawn with some handsome yet neutral garden furniture on the porch. All these can help make your house seem like a home to the passing observer, and make them entertain the thought that perhaps that house could be one they could live in.
On the interior, understand that less is more. Clear all the shelves and surfaces of clutter, remove any personal items or effects from view, and replace family photos and portraits with more unassuming, impersonal decorations such as undisclosed landscapes or pictures of flowers. Remember the purpose is not to show off your home, but rather to encourage the buyer that the house could feasibly be their home. This is a lot harder to do when there are visible reminders that other people already live there.
Removing the clutter, as well as conducting a quick deep clean and turning on all the lights, also has the added advantage of making the house seem larger, airier, and cleaner.