Preparing for the Best Open House Experience

The popularity of online real estate listings has spurred a renaissance for the open house event. Now that it is easier for potential buyers to see photos and receive details regarding a property, they are more likely to attend an open house where they are able to experience all the home has to offer firsthand. Open houses don’t always sell houses, but they do a great job with instigating interest and helping people on the fence determine if a property is right for them. Use the following tips to prepare for the best open house experience.
Your Open House, Your Realtor, and You
There are many reasons to hire a realtor to help sell your house. Realtor Bill Celler explains one of the best reasons is the expertise and help when it comes to setting up an open house. “Our job as a realtor is to provide proper marketing and to provide the homeowner with a checklist of what needs to be done so we're all on the same page,” Celler said. “Sellers should properly prepare the home, cleaning up, and turning on lights.” However, that’s just scratching the surface when it comes to the preparations you can do:
● Have your home professionally cleaned and detailed. When you are in the same space every day, you tend to get used to areas where dust and grime build up. However, potential homebuyers are not as used to your home and will spot problems immediately. Having a professional clean your house ensures it is clean from top to bottom and all the hidden spaces in between. Schedule your cleaning the week before your open house and you can spot clean and buff out scuffs and stains throughout the days leading up to the event.
● Highlight storage areas in your home by getting rid of items cluttering them. Since you are already planning on moving, it’s the perfect time to do a large-scale, Marie Kondo-inspired cleanout. However, if you are not quite ready to get rid of all your things, you can still create space by putting items in a rented storage area. At least there they will be boxed up and ready to move to your new home when it is time.
● Homeowners aren’t just selling their property, but they also have to sell their neighborhood and all the amenities it provides. Talk with your realtor about all the information you want open house attendees to have so they can include it on their leaflets or handouts provided.
● Get to know the average price of homes in your area so you can have a good idea regarding whether or not a bid is appropriate. For example, homes in Marietta, Georgia, have a median price of $390,000.
● Instead of filling your home with the cloying fragrance of baked goods, focus on making your house smell good by deodorizing fabrics, furniture and other surfaces. Believe it or not, even your hard surface floors can contribute to a funky home odor. Use antibacterial cleanser to kill odor-causing microbes and promote a clean, fresh scent throughout the house.
● If you have pets, make sure they are out of sight and out of mind during the open house. Gather all your pet’s accessories such as food bowls, scratching posts, toys and litter boxes and place them in the garage or storage shed where open house attendees won’t notice them. Have your pets boarded or take them with you during the event so they cannot bother potential homebuyers. Plus, your pets will be safer and happier without experiencing the influx of strangers into their territory.
An open house is a great opportunity to drive in people who have been scoping your listing online. Your realtor can help when it comes to setting up and advertising the event, but some of the staging priorities are left to the homeowners. To make a great impression on open house attendees, have your home professionally cleaned, highlight storage space, provide information on the neighborhood, deodorize through cleaning and remove evidence of pets from the home. Article provided by Suzie Wilson from