This past Sunday I held an Open House in Lower-Mililani (Waipio) for my listing. Well, come to find out it was the University of Hawaii's graduating ceremony and it was slllloooowwww. Our office had two condos and two single family homes running Open Houses and we all had but just a few guests.
That's okay though. When an Open House is slow we can find a wide variety of things to do until a guest arrives.
- Check around the home as soon as you enter and make sure all is in order (I strongly advise you to do so as I had previously gone in another home and went in the master bedroom to check out if the bed was made. It was the day after Halloween and a black g-string, fish net stockings and a whip were lying on the floor!)
- Set out your flyers, brochures, biz cards, snacks and other material before the first guest arrives.
- Take your laptop and work with your marketing tools to create brochures, flyers, post cards, seller and buyer presentation booklets.
- Work on other pending or upcoming listings or contracts (organize your emails, folders for clients)
It's not always that our Open House's are slow in Mililani, so my seller sat and talked to me for a few minutes. Then it turned into an hour with not one person driving up. The seller asked if she should leave and I told her she was welcome to stay. (I usually tell them to keep busy ...elsewhere... for that time...this time I didn't) Anyway, I have already prepped her from the beginning:
- To instruct anyone coming to the door (on other days) to take a flyer from the brochure box and contact me.
- DO NOT LET ANYONE IN THE HOUSE without an agent or appointment! (unless it's my public Open House)
- To tell the neighbors to do the same as above and if they start acting all palsy walsy to tell them to call me for info.
- To let me handle all the work (negotiations, marketing etc) as her answers may be wrong and hurt any chances for any offers.
We utilized the time that first hour going through the Seller's Real Property Disclosure and she dragged out her needed documents 'in case' we get into contract. She found the roof warranty, the old survey, and her old contract and disclosure so we could see if she missed anything. That info helped tremendously as she didn't know who, what, when, why, how and where of many things.
We had a total of three groups and a nosey lady (she's the one who said she was just being nosey....NOT ME) come in to the Open House the last two hours and during the time in between we chatted and learned more about each other. She appreciated that I didn't shoo her away and I was actually happy she stayed to watch how I 'perform' when someone did walk in. I saw approval in her eyes.
I know my stuff :)
In any event, this Open House made me realize one important thing. Spending a little "up close and personal" time allowed the seller to determine that she made the right choice when she walked into our office that lucky day and met "Sally". She now asks questions and her whole demeanor is calm....and trusting.
This isn't just a business. When taking steps to interact with my clients...it becomes a connection.
Celeste "Sally" Cheeseman is a Realtor-Associate with Century 21 Liberty Homes in Mililani, Hawaii. With a sharp understanding that a listening ear is the key to a client's needs she serves the island of Oahu (Honolulu County) and all Hawaii Military Relocating to Hawaii, Hawaii Retirees, Hawaii Job Transfers and Hawaii Residents. Website: www.hawaiihomesmarket.com
© 2008 Celeste "Sally" Cheeseman, All rights reserved.