It is time to kick off the new year with a fresh batch of homes for sale. Even though the market is in a slump, we are starting to see a shift with more interest in the market from buyers. Open houses are one of the best ways to get those buyers to write an offer, but how do you ensure your agent is putting on the perfect open house?
Thousands of open houses are held every weekend by vendors and their realtors. The ones that are the most successful are the ones that can keep the buyer in the home as long as possible. This is because buyers will view multiple properties in a weekend and the more time they spend in yours, the more likely they are to remember what they loved about it.
Serving coffee and water, and providing tasty treats, is a great way to hook the buyer. Stick with small cookies and pastries that can be enjoyed as the buyer makes his/her way around the home. Place a small but attractive refuse bin in each room so that you do not end up with garbage around the space during viewings.
Ensure that all rooms are free from clutter and garbage, are void of offensive odours, and are decorated with an updated and neutral palate. All knick-knacks and personal photos should be boxed up and ready to move. This especially holds true for any children’s rooms. Put all those toys away and take all the posters down. A buyer may want to use the spare room as guest room or office and it can be particularly difficult to envision if the room is full of cartoon characters on the walls and stuffed animals underfoot. Children’s rooms should have a young but sophisticated feel to them so they sell themselves, while the rest of the home should boast a modern clean decor.
As for the realtor — well, each realtor will have their own selling style. Regardless of their method, your realtor should be dressed to impress the demographic you are targeting. While a shirt and tie are always in style, a younger crowd may respond better to a more informal approach (dress pants and a golf shirt), while an older crowd may appreciate a more formal attire.
All of these things should be discussed with your realtor in advance of signing any listing. Making sure that your open house stands out above the rest is just one way to ensure a quick sale for maximum dollar.
– Ryan DeLuca is a realtor with Sotheby’s International Realty Canada, and host of The Real Estate Minute on Novus TV; email@example.com.