Is the Open House still Effective?








To answer this question: YES!

I come from London where open houses are quite popular with local Realtors. This is a very busy market and serving our clients is always our number one concern. Given how quickly properties are moving it is even more important to ensure that your Sellers are able to get as many people through as possible to enhance the prospect of multiple offers.

When should you do an open house?

With current trends in the marketplace swaying towards a Sellers’ market, it is always good to do an open house close to the time you list.

Our best turn outs are not always when we host weekend open houses. We have had great success opening up our clients’ homes on a weeknight from 6 pm – 8 pm.

Open Houses can put pressure on the buyers who are “on the fence”. If an agent shows my property on a Wednesday and there is an open house sign on the lawn saying “Open this Saturday 2 – 4 pm”, they are now thinking “I should make an offer before the open house so I don’t go into competition”. Sometimes this is the push that some people need to make an offer on a great property for them.

People always say “ya, but do you ever sell a listing from an open house?” Not always, but just last weekend I got an offer because of an open house. The home was listed for four weeks in a busy market and I hosted my third open house on the property and we received an offer from a person who came through the open house with an agent that didn’t even view the home.

Here are some things you can gain from an open house:

  1. Someone walking/driving by who might not have been in the market could make a spontaneous decision they want the home and make an offer.
  2. Extra business – while this is not my primary concern at an open house as I am there to sell the home it can happen in a few different ways:
    • A neighbour comes in to be “nosey” and then tells you they are actually looking to list and invites you over to give them an idea of what their home is worth;
    • Someone might not be represented and want to make an offer on that property and you can help both sides and in the end the Seller you are representing
    • Someone you haven’t seen in a while that is just starting their search comes in and through reconnecting you end up helping them buy a home (there is a better chance of this in smaller markets)
    • You pick up a buyer because the house you are selling just isn’t going to work but you are able to help them find their dream home.
  3. Something to offer in a listing presentation as a value-add for sellers.  Often agents must go through an interview process to list the property – this could be something that could set you apart from the other agents
  4. Marketing! Open houses give you a chance to market your listing even more.  They are an opportunity to refresh online advertising, give a boost to the listing, and even reach out to those who have enquired about the property or shown the property.  Reach out to agents who have shown it once – let them know if they still have interested buyers they can come to the open house for a second look.  Bring it back to their attention.

All in all I am very in favour of open houses for the reasons above and I hope that this article will help you see some of the advantages too.


Lindsay Reid

This blog post contribution was provided by YPN Member Lindsay Reid. Lindsay is a licensed real estate broker and co-owner of Royal LePage Triland Community Realty. She started in real estate over 5 years ago and has worked with an array of different situations and age groups.  She specializes in property management, helping people buy homes, helping people sell homes, and helping to find a great realtor in a different market.


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