So, your home is on the market and you’re ready to sell. One of the first steps to getting this done is preparing an open house.
An open house is a set time where prospective buyers can come and walk through your home. It’s a great option because it cuts down on the need to set up regular walk-throughs, or last-minute viewings when your house isn’t completely cleaned or ready for a buyer.
If you’re ready to plan your own, here are ten steps from The Degnan Group to prepare a perfect open house!
1. Hire an Agent
Hiring an agent from The Degnan Group is the first step to successfully preparing your open house. An agent can help you get organized and help you advertise.
From tracking down blueprints, warranties, and inspection documents to display at the open house, to ensuring it’s listed on the right websites and in the right papers, a quality agent by your side is incredibly helpful when planning an open house for your home.
2. Time it Right
The best time for an open house is in the early evening. Schedule yours around 5 or 6 pm so prospective buyers can make it after work. If an open house during the week doesn’t work for you and you need to use a weekend, Sunday is often a better choice than Saturday because people are less busy and more likely to be able to make it.
Although the weather is often out of your control, be aware of any upcoming storms and try to schedule around them so inclement weather doesn’t keep people away as well.
Advertising your open house is important to ensure success. Often, your agent can help you get listed in different papers and websites that they have experience with.
It’s also great to put out signs in the days leading up to the event. Make sure the address and hours are clear, and a sign is on the nearest large road or intersection to draw in traffic.
Now it’s time to tackle the interior. The first step is decluttering and getting rid of any personal photos or knick-knacks. You want the buyers to picture their family in your home, and for that, they need a blank slate.
Start packing up photos, toys, clothes, and other personal items in your rooms, closets, and bathrooms. It helps prepare your house, and will get you a step ahead of your moving schedule!
5. Clean Your Home
A deep clean is essential before you stage an open house. Even the places that are usually neglected, like your basement storage room or inside the oven and fridge, need your undivided attention. Everything should be scrubbed and swept until the house is spotless.
6. Stage the Home
You can hire professional staging services or tackle this step on your own. If you want to stage your own home, remove excess furniture and rearrange the rest to make the space look open and airy.
Experts also suggest removing rugs to show off hardwood floors, setting the table, and replacing small things like towels, lampshades, and light fixtures with new ones.
7. Take Care of the Small Touches
There are a lot of little things you can do to make your home stand out during the open house.
Bake cookies right before the event, so your house is infused with a warm and welcoming smell. Also, make sure all the curtains are open to let in natural light, and all the lights are on. If the weather is nice, consider opening the windows to let in fresh air.
Finally, don’t forget to offer hor ‘d oeuvres. No one is going to stay and linger on an empty stomach, and snacks encourage buyers to stick around, explore the house, and ask for more information.
8. Keep Kids and Pets Out of the House
Your open house will be planned in advance, so you have plenty of time to make alternative arrangements for your children and pets. Your kids can demand your attention while you’re talking to prospective buyers or accidentally make a mess, so it’s better to send them to family or friends for the day.
Prospective buyers may be scared of your pets, and others suffer from allergies. Because of that, it’s best to keep your dog or cat out of the home during your open house.
9. Be Personable and Ready to Answer Questions
An open house is a great time to talk to prospective buyers, and a chance for them to ask questions. Be available to answer any questions they may have about past maintenance and repairs, inspections, pricing, the neighborhood, or anything else they may be wondering about. Be friendly, and it will go a long way in giving the buyer a good impression of the home.
10. Provide Info to Take Home
The final step in preparing a perfect open house is providing information to take home. You or your real estate agent should prepare a pamphlet with the size of the house, photos, pricing, location, and your contact information.
Buyers may tour a lot of homes, and it’s easy to forget an open house without a physical reminder. By providing all the information they need in one place, it’s easy to contact you when they want to make an offer.
Prepare Your Open House with The Degnan Group
The best open houses start with a knowledgeable agent. The realtors at The Degnan Group have over 150 years of combined experience and are ready to use it to make sure your house sells. If you’re ready to get your home on the market and stage a perfect open house, call The Degnan Group today to get started!