What do home buyers want to see at an Open House?

I have often wondered, when a prospective home buyer or  a home seller comes into my open house, what exactly are they looking for?

Is it community information, a better idea of the particular property, a sense of who I am, or are they lost, and looking for something to eat?

So what, open house attendee's, are you specifically are you looking for?

Johnny Yankoviak
Weichert Realtors
Manassas, Virginia

an equal housing opportunity
  • August 02 2014 - Manassas
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Answers (5)

First and foremost, I want to do an open house on opening weekend so that all of the interested buyers who were shown the house during the week can come back with friends and family.

A secondary reason for doing open houses is, when the property has been on the market for awhile, sellers often find themselves late on a Sunday afternoon wondering aloud if an open house MIGHT have attracted "some interest."
  • August 16 2014
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Why are you doing open houses when all evidence points to so few sales from them?
  • August 16 2014
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You have to look at an Open House as having multiple audiences. The most important question isn't what people are looking for, but what you want to accomplish with your open house.

Audiences: 
1. Neighbors: They will come by and look at the finishes, if they aren't familiar with the house. The idea is, if I decided to sell my house tomorrow, I wonder if I could list it for more or less than this one.
2. Realtors: If a listing agent, they will want to see if your property poses theirs much competition. If a buyers agent, they want to know if they should spend their hard earned chips with clients on showing off your home.
3. Passers By: "What, an Open House, let's go in and get cookies." Or, "I've always wanted to see what the houses look like in this gated community, let's go."
4. Buyers: They want the house to look nice, smell nice, and feel move in ready. If it's empty, they will go through it more quickly and find all the chips and bruises. If it's full of furniture and is turn-key, they'll imagine living in the home. These people will run through the home, and they might have already done internet research on the community. If they haven't, they will want details, crime, schools, idiosyncrasies. 

That's our experience. 

Now, the advantages of each group. The first, they will market the home for you to their friends. The second, they will market it to their clients. The third, they are your potential future listers, along with the first. The final one, well, if you get lucky, they'll come in and put an offer down on the house after thinking it over. 
  • August 05 2014
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Open house viewers have many reasons for their visits.  As A Professional, I enjoy speaking and attempting to gain an insight on their thinking. Sure, we never know if the answers that we receive are accurate, but that is part of the process.  To be effective in this business, you need to ask A lot of questions, and be sure to follow up.  The next deal just might be right in front of you.  Good Luck!


Alvin King GRI, BA
Elite Realty
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  • August 02 2014
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This is a hard question to answer.  It depends on who you talk to.  Usually cleanliness is extremely important.  Other than that it just depends.  Women are typically drawn to the rooms they spend the most time in; i.e. Kitchen, Bathroom, master Bedroom.  Men are usually more drawn to the living room (this is where our tv is...lol) the garage, basement, and any outdoor areas.  You have to remember that buying a house is an emotional investment to all parties involved.  And everyone has different tastes and things that turn them on or off.  Color choices can be huge.  All White gives an empty, clinical feel to a property, where as soft pastel colors or neutral colors can make a house feel more warm and inviting.  The biggest thing I have heard buyers complain about is when the owner either stages the house poorly or has so much furniture that the buyer feels closed in and cluttered.  Usually they like to see a more open space so that they have room to visualize how they would decorate the space.  If you are going to leave furniture in your house, do sparse yet tasteful furnishing which will make the space feel inviting but not cluttered.  You want to invite them to sit down and relax and feel at home without them feeling like they are smothered.  Beyond those things, it is really a toss up from buyer to buyer.
  • August 02 2014
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