Open House Ideas: Getting People Through the door

Real Estate Agent with Call Realty

Open House Ideas: Getting People Through the door

I'm sure that we've all had our fair share of open houses where the hours spent there were a complete waste of time.  Recently I've revamped how I advertise my open houses and I've had great success.  Here is what I do:

Monday prior:

  • Mail invitation/flyer to FSBO's in the area
  • Mail invitation/flyer to Move up buyers in the area. These are homes listed in the area for 10-15% less than the home I am holding open.
  • Mail invitation/flyer to listings in the area that recently expired or cancelled.
  • Email Realtors of the move-up listings an invitation to the open house.
  • Send a hand written invitation to anyone in my sphere who lives in the area.

Wednesday or Thursday prior:

  • Hang door hangers to neighbors.  We generally do about 40 homes: 10 on both sides of the open house home and 20 across the street
  • We also knock on each door of the hanger inviting individuals to come and bring a friend to the open house

Thursday & Friday prior:

  • Call individual who we mailed invitations to.  It's hard to get to everyone, but we do as many as we can.

Saturday or Sunday:

  • Hold the Open House

We've had outstanding results!  One many occasions, individual in the neighborhood how received out invitation invited a friend who did not live in that area.  We've had more than a few people drive many miles just to come to the open house.  Our results have been great!


This has worked for us.  What has worked for you?



Comments (72)

Gail Robinson
William Raveis Real Estate - Southport, CT
CRS, GRI, e-PRO Fairfield County, CT
Stephanie, If you can publish a map of the locations of the homes in the newspaper, it will make it easier for potential buyers to find the home.  If you can afford to print the map in color, it will really stand out.  Then have copies of the map available in every Open House property.  You might also want to have a drawing which you all pitch in money for so that the prize is a good one.  Only one entry per Open House, so the more they see, the more chances they get.
Jan 22, 2008 02:50 PM
Lindsay Pendleton
Relocating To Baton Rouge & Surrounding Areas - Baton Rouge, LA
Marketing Agent - Property Management in Baton Rou
We advertise in the newspaper and any website that will let me shout about an open house...I shout it from the mountains!
Jan 22, 2008 02:58 PM
Amy Whiffen
RE/MAX Southern Shores - Myrtle Beach, SC
REALTOR - Myrtle Beach Real Estate
Interesting suggestions, thank you.
Jan 24, 2008 09:01 AM
michelle thompson
coldwellbanker hunter realty - Medina, OH

Great ideas,I recently did  popcorn attached to a postcard door hanger(pre-packaged wrapped) to 50 homes in the close proximity of the home The postcard said Just popped by to let you know address is having a open house,people seem to respond if you give them food and offer food ,so we also have fresh popcorn for our guest. and take home Thank-you for popping in postcards (be sure to brand everything with name and home for sale address)

Feb 26, 2009 02:23 PM
Liz Provo
Mass Marketing Resources - Easthampton, MA

One weekend last year we held a Western Mass Open House Weekend and invited all of our for-sale-by-owner advertisers and anyone else selling "by owner" to join us for the event. We had our advertisers carry flyes to neighbors, announce it on Craigslist and other local advertsing.  We announced the event online through our newsletter (I'm a Constant Contact Business Partner), giving a snapshot of each property that was participating, through online and local press releases, and provided each of our sellers with information on other open houses in their area - kind of like Macy's vs. Gimbals in  Miracle on 34th St.!  What a great event.  It was picked up by the local TV station and one of our advertisers was interviewed.  Just Google Western Mass Open House Weekend.....

We may try a Fall event this year just to mix things up.  Creating a buzz...that's what it's all about.

May 27, 2009 01:10 PM
April Stephens
RE/MAX One Realty - Clayton, NC
Broker/Realtor - Johnston & Wake County

I agree, I do lots of Open Houses & this gave me new ideas for getting the word out!  Thanks so much!

May 27, 2009 02:43 PM
Maya Garg * ASP/ASA/ABR/CNE/
Royal Lepage Signature Realty,Mississauga, Ontario - Mississauga, ON
Moving you Forward.... Buyers, Sellers, Investors

Great ideas and very organized.  To add one more about keeping notepads or some promotional items which they can take.  I keep notepads,local map of the neighbourbood and emergency numbers card and people take this with them.  Atleast they have notepad to use for 40 days.  This works for me.




May 27, 2009 03:11 PM

These are great suggestions.  I have the perfect house to try it on.  I have had trouble getting anyone in the door.  Thanks for sharing.

May 27, 2009 03:28 PM
Gale & Jim Tobin
BLUE OAK REALTY, (DC metro) "The Spouses Who Sell Houses!"® - Fairfax, VA

some real good ideas here...I especially like the idea of co-hosting with the owners. That might work with some owners for sure! .....thanks everyone

May 27, 2009 03:53 PM
Mike Henderson
Your complete source for buying HUD homes - Littleton, CO
HUD Home Hub - 303-949-5848

What a really cool ideas to drive traffic to open houses.

May 27, 2009 04:47 PM
Lyn Sims
Schaumburg, IL
Schaumburg Real Estate Agent Retired

Yikes!!! How were your results?

May 28, 2009 01:29 AM
Dana Wilkinson
Connect Realty, The Woodlands, TX - The Woodlands, TX
Broker-Your TX agent for The Woodlands-Spring-Conr

Well thought out plan, but it does seem like quite an expense.  Do you do it for every listing or just the ones that might generate some traffic?

May 28, 2009 02:09 AM
Gene Riemenschneider
Home Point Real Estate - Brentwood, CA
Turning Houses into Homes

Very good ideas.

May 28, 2009 03:33 AM
Home View
Home View, LLC - Chatsworth, CA
May 28, 2009 09:04 AM
Gina Zimmerman
North Eastern Group Realty - Fort Wayne, IN
Fort Wayne Real Estate

Wow.  You guys really work for your clients -- and great prospecting ideas.  Where do you find enough hours in the day??

May 28, 2009 10:05 AM
Patty Rufo
Realty Solutions - Centerville, MA

Another great idea one of the agents in our company came up with is a special invitation mailed to the neighbors inviting them to attend the OH and hour before the public.  She then proceeds to do a CMA of each of their homes and hands it to them when they attend. It is a little bit of work but a good way to get a listing or future listing in the same neighborhood.

Patty Rufo, William Raveis RE, Cape Cod, MA

May 28, 2009 12:03 PM
Deborah Wilson
Hackenberg Realty Group - Canton, OH
Stark County OH Real Estate

Very impressive.  You mean business.  The seller will appreciate your actions and results and the other people will say wow I want  them as my Realtor.

May 29, 2009 03:41 PM
Carrie Sampron
Home Smart Realty Group - Highlands Ranch, CO
ABR SFR & Kathy Sampron (303) 931-3629 Highlands R

Scott:  Wow, what an ambitious plan.  I've bookmarked your page and will strive to add some of this to our arsenal.

May 31, 2009 10:09 AM
Diana Holbrook McKee
Holbrook Realty - Bountiful, UT

Great suggestions! I am going to implement them on my next open house!

Jun 06, 2009 02:47 AM
Paul Gapski
Berkshire Hathaway / Prudential Ca Realty - El Cajon, CA
619-504-8999,#1 Resource SD Relo

Thanks for your tips. I am trying to master Open Houses. I think it's a great way to get business.

Jan 29, 2012 02:59 AM