When planning to sell your home, the best realtors in your local area may advise you to host an open house. This is a critical step in the process of selling your home and can rake in a mass quantity of prospective buyers all at once. An open house can save you time, money, and help you sell your home faster while getting a better deal on the home.
Making sure your open house is executed perfectly should be a priority for anyone who is selling a home, so we’ve made this resource to answer some frequently asked questions about open houses to make sure that yours is going to be a success!
What is an Open House?
An open house is when a seller opens their home to numerous potential buyers and gives them the opportunity to swing by and check the property out. Interested parties can visit the seller’s home without an appointment.
The reason so many people choose to host an open house is that it allows home sellers to showcase their properties to numerous prospects at once. It is an efficient means of concentrating a large number of showings into a limited timeframe, thereby sparing you the hassle of preparing your property for multiple showings over a long period of time.
You can and should provide individual showings to prospective buyers, but if this is all that you do you may get less early offers and your home could take longer to sell – ultimately reducing the value of your home.
What is the Best Day for an Open House?
Most of the top realtors agree that weekends, especially the first Sunday after your home is listed, is the best day for home sellers to hold an open house. This is because most of the potential home buyers are off from work on weekends, thus making Saturday and Sunday the best days for holding an open house.
Another reason to keep an open house on weekends is that in high-foot-traffic neighborhoods, a weekend stroll can instantly turn into impromptu home shopping for potential buyers.
What is the Best Time for an Open House?
Top real estate agents suggest holding open houses in the afternoon, typically between 1pm and 3pm, but this can vary depending on the area you live in.
Timing is everything when it comes to open houses. There are many reasons for it:
In some local areas, open houses in the mornings can be a complete failure and you won’t see the kind of foot traffic that you would normally expect. You need to anticipate the lifestyle of your area to figure out when in the mid-afternoon people will be logistically able and emotionally ready to walk through your house and paint their own picture of what living there would look like for them.
Weekend mornings are typically busy in many areas. Saturdays are filled with sports or other events for children. Similarly, a high percentage of people go to church on Sunday mornings. In most places, people spend weekend afternoons at home. This is why, top realtors advise home sellers to hold an open house in the afternoon on a weekend instead of the morning when people are too busy to come and explore homes for sale.
What is the Best Month for an Open House?
For most people, April and May are the best months for an open house.
The best month for an open house is dependent on the month you are hoping to sell your home. If you have mandatory dates where you need to be relocated by, then those issues should take precedent when accounting for when to list your home and host open houses. Once you list your home, you should begin advertising open house events because the longer you are on the market, the less desirable your house becomes.
The most consequential condition that will impact when you list your home and begin open houses is the market you’re selling in. Understanding the market trends will help you make better decisions about when to list your home and begin showings so that you can get the best price on your home
What is the Best Season for hosting an open house?
Beyond market trends, the season that you’re selling in will have a significant impact on buyers. The most popular time to list your home and host an open house is in mid-spring, but this is dependent on where you live. For home selling seasons, you should know these key differences between what it means to sell real estate during these seasons:
The winter is the hardest time of year to sell a home in most areas. Hosting open houses can be a challenge if you live in an area that gets cold and accumulates snow. Snow accumulation and winter conditions can impact the “curb appeal” of your home as well.
There are benefits to selling in the winter! While you may get less prospects overall, those prospects are some of the most serious buyers, often up against deadlines to close by the end of the year. Also, giving your home a holiday feel can really make a viewing experience impactful for prospects, especially if they have a family or enjoy hosting events.
In most areas, the first two weeks of May are the best time to sell a home. The warm weather, blooming flowers, and emotional charge buyers get in spring cannot be replicated in any other season. Selling in spring helps you get ahead of a rush of competition that comes in the summer. This is also the best time of year for buyers to move, so you are looking at a list of potentially serious buyers
There are some warnings we should alert you to about selling in the spring. If the weather in your local area is still snowy, muddy, or rainy, your home will lose curb appeal and open houses will not be as effective as they should be.Weather in the spring in most places is unpredictable, so you cannot rely on good weather for all of your open houses. Competition in the housing market is at its peak, so expect buyers to have a list of options and want to negotiate price with you.
All that being said, for most people, the pro’s outweigh the con’s for most people looking to sell their homes in the springtime
Summer is a huge time for home-sellers to list and close deals on a home. Of all the days of the year, June 28th statistically closes the most sales on homes every year. Showing your home in the summer is great in most areas because the weather is reliable. Families are much more ready to move into a new home while their children are out of school, meaning many buyers will be motivated to close a deal before the school year begins again. You and your buyers will have more time available to tour your home or attend an open house during their summer vacation. You also have a massive amount of data available from spring sales accurately price your home.
Not everything about summer is easy for selling your home though. Weather in some areas can be incredibly hot, making open houses a major hassle for you and your prospects. While your buyers may have time to look at your home, they may not be motivated to spend their vacation time home-shopping. Also, professionals like agents, contractors, and landscapers will be swamped with work, making it harder to get the work you need done accomplished.
Whether fall is the best time for you to sell your home is dependent on the area that you live in. If summer is too hot and the spring is too wet, then the fall may be your best time to list and show your home. This is especially true in New England where the spring is a long muddy season and summers are often hot and muggy. Some areas reveal beautiful landscapes in the peak of fall, making for magical and impactful open houses.
In most places, there is less competition in the market during the fall. You will have added leverage when approached by serious buyers who couldn’t buy during the spring or the fall who are motivated to buy before the holidays. It is easy to find contractors, landscapers, and agents during the fall, so you can make sure everything is in order for your open house or to close a deal before winter.
On the other hand, while there may be less competition from other sellers in the fall, buyers often know that there are fewer buyers searching in the fall. These buyers could be more demanding when time for negotiation begins. If your home’s foliage takes on autumn colors, your window will open and close quickly before your home begins losing curb appeal as the trees lose their leaves.
As you can tell, there is no single best month or season to host an open house or to sell your home. The impact of your open house and what that means for you prospective buyers can vary greatly between the different seasons, so take your personal priorities into account before firmly deciding when to list your home and begin advertising your open house.
When Should you Advertise your Open House?
Put out ads between Sunday to Tuesday before your open house using social media, billboards, email, and home listing sites. If you use paid digital ads, boost your budget on Thursdays for extra powerful results.
If you’ve decided to host your open house on a weekend at mid-day, then you should advertise the open house early in the week. This will ensure that you are informing people with enough time for them to clear their schedule, but not so long before that they forget about the event altogether. Make sure that your ads display where people can find more information about the house and how to book a showing. Show your home’s listing link and a phone number for you or your real estate agent for further inquiries.
Using multiple channels to get the word out is a huge help, so consult with your real estate agent about what methods will work best in your area.
How do you get people to come to your Open House?
Offering incentives and call-to-actions (CTA’s) with your ads will help attract people to your open house. Include details that make your showing appealing like “Free appetizers” or highlight the most desirable aspect of your house in the ad. Using CTA’s like “Make the first offer, visit now.” or “Home closing soon, make an offer before it’s too late” can add urgency for the buyer so that they take action immediately after seeing your ad.
Your real estate agent is an expert in marketing homes and open houses, so ask them what they’d recommend and let them lead the way. If you are listing a home on your own, consider hiring a real estate agent as a consultant to help you along the way.
Do serious buyers go to an Open House?
Yes, you do get serious buyers coming to an open house. Open houses will attract a large number of prospective buyers all at once. Serious buyers are no less likely to attend an open house than window-shoppers. By welcoming many possible buyers into your home, you are certainly bringing in many more serious buyers than you would if you did only individual home showings.
Open houses do more than just add people to the pool of prospective buyers, it also adds pressure to your prospects to make a deal before it is too late! By seeing other people and overhearing conversations about how much they like your home, you are likely to get offers from prospects who are hoping to beat the competition that they witnessed at your open house.
Never underestimate the power of perceived competition when it comes to negotiating with a buyer. This can be a great tool when applied correctly, and hosting a great open house lets you harness the power of perceived competition for your home.
Special Events and Open Houses:
Another crucial factor to consider when holding an open house is to keep an eye on the calendar. Make sure to watch out for major events, such as:
- Citywide events
- Construction projects happening in the neighborhood on a large scale
- Road closures that can prohibit access to your home
Furthermore, other local events like business events happening in your home town can be beneficial for you as it can help attract an audience to your neighborhood. If you have an open house on that day, chances are some interested buyers from other areas might stop by your place. Therefore, such events can actually bring more foot traffic to your home. This can further increase your chances of closing a deal fast.
Real Estate Agent Life Hack: List on a Thursday
One last tip that local real estate brokers often use is listing their homes for sale on Thursdays. Here’s why:
Because most people plan their weekends on Thursday, and because most people host their open houses on the weekend, you can get the fastest turnout by listing your home on Thursday with an open house scheduled for the same weekend. Home sellers should imagine their open house as a grand opening of their real estate listing. The open house might be the first time when people come to visit your property, so show off your home and let it receive the praise it deserves!
Open houses can be energizing events for a home seller, so lean into it and have fun!
Enjoy your first open house, good luck!
If you’re selling a property for the first time, then we recommend browsing through our list of top realtors and hire one who can help you with the home selling process. An experienced realtor can provide you with quality information and guidance, which is needed to hold a successful open house and close a great deal in the fastest possible time.