4 Ways to Perk Up the Open House

Practitioners are increasingly looking for alternatives to the traditional Sunday open house that will successfully bring in buyers and grow their prospect list.

April 1, 2011

Change the time and day.

Think that open houses can be held only for a two-hour window on Sundays? Think again. Evening open houses are one option gaining in popularity. Kelly Evans, an associate with RE/MAX Palos Verdes Realty in Palos Verdes, Calif., hosts "twilight" open houses so buyers can come directly after work.

Pick a theme.

Margaret Rome, broker-owner of HomeRome Realty in Baltimore, says you have to make the event fun. She’s hosted a popcorn-and-champagne soiree, a block party with a huge BBQ pit, and an evening cocktail party at the homes of her listings. The events garnered attention and directly led to the sale of the home.

Go virtual.

Creating a stellar virtual tour can sometimes be even more effective in grabbing potential buyers than hosting an open house. Try Easypano.com or 3DVista.com, which produce virtual tours that you can host on your own Web site.

Wait until after the sale.

If your favorite part of an open house is the new leads you get for your prospect database, consider a different approach that yields similar results. Sales coach Edward Hatch, CRB, CRS, of Ed Hatch Seminars in Gambrills, Md., suggests hosting a housewarming party for the buyer. Ideally, the buyer will give you a list of close friends so you can send out invitations. At the soiree, your client serves as a personal endorser of your services.