Summertime means warmer weather, vacation time, and big changes. Many families, college students, retirees, and busy professionals use the summer season to buy and sell real estate. If you’re planning on hosting a traditional open house this summer, consider some of these ideas to really make your property stand out.
A successful open house doesn’t happen by accident. It’s a result of strategic planning and careful attention to detail. When you’re scheduling an open house, there are a few things to consider. Are afternoon rain showers common in the summer? If so, you may want to schedule your tours for earlier in the morning or the evening. Does it get blistering hot at noon? Maybe earlier showings will generate more interest.
Also, consider people’s summer schedules. Kids are out of school, so consider offering kid-friendly activities at the open house so parents can tour while the kids are entertained. Popular times for weekend open houses during the summer are from 9-11 a.m. or 3-5 p.m., and Thursdays nights from 6-8 can also draw a crowd.
Every real estate agent has their own style and preferences when it comes to home staging. Some agents like to bring in a professional stager to reinvent the space, while others prefer to add small touches throughout the home to highlight the property’s best features. However you choose to stage your home, add some summer-themed elements to make your property stand out. If the home has a pool, throw some pool floats in the water and set out some brightly colored pool towels. Add a summer-themed welcome mat by the front door, or add summer-themed decor to the kitchen or patio areas. You can even use technology to virtually stage a home and email the different options out to interested buyers!
Offer Summer Snacks
Offering snacks at an open house is a nice touch, as long as it doesn’t take away from the experience. Food at an open house should be snack-size, easy to eat, and not prone to make a mess. These should be snacks that don’t require a lot of prep or work, and should not require your attention throughout the open house. Fruity drinks, finger sandwiches, fruit skewers, and cocktail meatballs are all bite-sized snacks that are easy to eat and flow with your summer theme.
Chocolate chip cookies are a classic favorite, as they add a welcoming aroma to the space. Be careful though, because burning the cookies minutes before guests arrive could be an unpleasant distraction.
Summer is a time when people are traveling, which means they can’t always be present at an open house. Along with a physical open house, use social media and innovative real estate software to bring your open house to everyone.
- Use Instagram stories to share a virtual walkthrough
- Add a professional 3D tour to your website
- Host a Facebook Live event so virtual buyers can ask questions
- Use social media to promote your open house and engage with buyers
- Create a virtual model of the property
- Use a professional photographer to create a seamless virtual walkthrough experience
Don’t Forget the Follow Up
Regardless of the season, following up with interested buyers is an important part of the home showing process. You have a very limited window after guests leave the open house to reach out and follow up. This strategy shows buyers that you are invested in the process, that you are intentional and genuinely interested in any questions, comments, or feedback that they have about the home. Even if they aren’t interested in the home, their feedback about the style of the open house and the details of the home can help you improve your marketing strategy.
A quick and personal email thanking guests for coming to the open house and reminding them that you are available for any of their real estate-related needs can be the thing that turns leads into buyers.
One More Secret
An open house is only as good as the agent hosting it. You can have colorful staging techniques, tasty food, and innovative marketing strategies, but if you don’t know the local market and aren’t current on industry trends, it’s all for nothing. Continued education is one of the smartest investments real estate professionals can make. Mbition offers online courses and classes for new and seasoned real estate professionals to help them advance in their careers and better serve their clients.