Why open homes don’t sell properties.

Do open houses work? Do open houses sell homes? These are questions that every real estate agent has been asked at one time or another in their career.

Now let me be very clear for 12 years I had been doing open homes because we were taught or led to believe we had to… then COVID hit and we had to change the way we did things, the way we had to market properties, the way we had to sell properties and to be honest we haven’t gone back to the old fashioned way. Reason being we are selling more homes than ever before, we are selling homes much faster, our clients are not cleaning their homes for stickybeaks or neighbours just wanting to look at your home.

It has now become one of the most heated debates in real estate when Agents talk about whether open houses work to sell a home.

There are two camps on this hotly debated topic – those that say open houses are a vital part of marketing and those that say they are completely unnecessary.

So let me show you why and explain why agents or lazy agents do open homes.

Let’s get one thing out on the table right away. Open houses are a waste of time for a seller and entirely unnecessary to sell a home in the digital age.

When someone decides they are in the market to buy a home what do they do? If you are thinking they get on their device and look at homes, then you are 100% correct. When they become really serious, do you know what else they do?

If you are guessing they call a real estate agent you are right again! SERIOUS buyers always call the agent when they are in the market to purchase a home. They pick up the phone, call the agent or email and say I would like you to show me the home at 1 Smith Street.

If you are a current seller right now reading this, you might be thinking what difference does it make whether an open house works or not.

Frankly, it doesn’t mean anything as long as you don’t mind who walks through your home. What many sellers forget about is the fact that an open house means precisely that – open for ANYONE to come through the door!

An open invitation means you will see some or all of these people coming by:

  • Your nosy neighbours who have nothing better to do.
  • Those who are UNQUALIFIED to pay anything close to your asking price or are even in buying mode.

By not running open homes we can have better conversations with the buyers, our buyers are pre-qualified prior to inspecting meaning we have asked the simple questions such as


Q) Have you spoken to your broker/bank to get your pre-approval in place

Q) has the bank given you a lending capacity you can borrow.

So if you are on the market running open homes getting a lot of buyers through the door but not many are making offers or the home isn’t selling it’s because these are buyers are not fully ready or qualified to buy a property. The old saying Less is More so by not running a open home you will see less buyers through but the ones your agent does bring through will be a higher quality of buyer ready and in a position to purchase on the day.

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