Still holding open houses? That’s old fashioned.

Real Estate Agent with Alain Pinel BRE 01367196

Still holding open houses? That’s old fashioned.

Yes, but in many ways, old-fashioned works!

Think of  the power of the personal note (letter, card --- not email)....especially when saying “Thank You” . It makes a significant difference in how the writer is perceived by the addressee. Because it took more effort and more care to write a personal note, the writer is seen as more sincere, caring and conscientious.

Why do we hold open houses? See and be seen!

In Alameda CA and in other places in the Bay Area CA, it's a major marketing action item.

Highlight the property’s benefits. The MLS and the property website can only do so much to promote a property. On site, the listing agent can take the potential buyer to an in-depth view of the property. Point out features and benefits. Discuss options and alternatives. Overcome objections.

Credible resource. The listing agent is promoting his listing in person. Doing so also exposes him to a new audience ---- potential buyers and sellers who may have found the listing on line and elsewhere and made it a point to come. Being knowledgeable about the property, and displaying the ability to answer questions and provide information, he is perceived as a credible resource.

Building agent relationship. Some agents who are unable to show the particular property will encourage their clients to view the property during open houses. Communicating with the other agents that you welcome their clients also help build rapport.  The other party becomes comfortable knowing that you as the listing agent can be trusted not to “poach” their clients.

Showcase yourself. Think of this as an interview. Some buyers and sellers may not be represented...and as such, may be on the lookout for someone who can help them. So how do you present yourself? Are you helpful? Are you easy to talk with?

One potential buyer told me that an agent at an open house was just so arrogant and seemed to look down on them. So they were delighted to come to my open house and have someone who cared enough to listen to them. In a way, I took that as an opportunity to defuse the situation.

Pick up new clients!  This is one of the best benefits. And yes, it does happen quite frequently. Even if one picks up just one very good lead, it takes just one to make open house worth its weight in gold.

Looking back at my sales through the years, I can attest to the fact that 15% of my clients were open house leads and I carefully nurtured them since then. I’ve even had clients look for me months or even a year after we met.

And as I write this, I'm drafting an offer for a buyer who came through my open house, liked what I had to say, and liked me too :)


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Sharon Parisi
United Real Estate Dallas - Dallas, TX
Dallas Homes

Open house provide opportunities for Realtors to connect with neighbors, potential buyers, potential sellers and gain valuable information about the neighborhood and the perceived real estate market.


Sep 05, 2012 06:53 AM #29
Toby Barnett
KW North Sound - Marysville, WA
Toby Barnett

A necessary evil in which I do but do not like one bit. I'd rather have my weekends for me :)

Sep 05, 2012 07:26 AM #30
Pat Whitehouse
RE/MAX 1st Olympic Lynchburg Va - Lynchburg, VA

Pacita-I have had mixed luck with them but I still do them and the sellers seem to like them.

Sep 05, 2012 08:24 AM #31
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, Keller Williams Fox Cities - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

For an agent who feels the need to get their name out there to more people, it sure beats irritating people at the baseball game while you shove business cards into their hands.  And after you sort through the nosy neighbors, you might find a prospective client for this or more likely another house.

Sep 05, 2012 08:50 AM #32
Gene Riemenschneider
Home Point Real Estate - Brentwood, CA
Turning Houses into Homes

I believe in open houses.  Great post.  Especially when you have the quality listing.

Sep 05, 2012 10:06 AM #33
Peggy Hughes/pha logistix, inc.
pha logistix inc - San Francisco, CA

Pacita... great post. I don't know what the SF Bay Area would do without open houses!!! It would be like withdrawel from a drug for some people :)

Sep 05, 2012 11:35 AM #34
Bob Miller
Keller Williams Cornerstone Realty - Ocala, FL
The Ocala Dream Team

Hi Pacita, we can imagine making open houses a real success, especially if you devote the time and energy you have outlined.

Sep 05, 2012 08:04 PM #35
Beth and Richard Witt
Long Island Cash Home Buyer - Huntington, NY
Long Island Cash Home Buyer 516-330-6940

Hi Pat.. Our agents hold a ton of Open House and all find them very beneficial...

Sep 06, 2012 03:25 AM #36
Pacita Dimacali
Alain Pinel - Oakland, CA
Alameda/Contra Costa Counties CA

Debbie C --- a lot of us got our feet wet doing open houses. And for many whose experiences were positive, we continue to do it with a smile :)

Jon -- open houses do make sellers feel like we're working for them

Phil --- very true. Face to face is what we aim to get all the time.

Ben --- last weekend, I had over 35 groups come through. And at least one buyer for me.

Hella --- open houses also give us the opportunity to hone our communication skills


Sep 06, 2012 04:28 AM #37
Pacita Dimacali
Alain Pinel - Oakland, CA
Alameda/Contra Costa Counties CA

Dana --- open interview is a great way to think of open houses. That puts us on our best behavior :)

Dennis --- patience, enthusiasm, and faith 

Fred--- as long as the inspector reserves his comment to his client and not hold court :)

Arlene --- your comments should be in a blog by itself. Fabulous ideas!

Joe -- in my neck of the woods, agents without listings are competing to hold open houses for those who do

Sep 06, 2012 04:30 AM #38
Pacita Dimacali
Alain Pinel - Oakland, CA
Alameda/Contra Costa Counties CA

Sharon -- it's a great way to network!

Pat -- it all depends on the seller, the property, the community. Some open houses are downright fun!

Bob -- you're right. Best that they come to you. It's a friendlier, gentler approach

Gene -- the right circumstances can reap great rewards

Peggy --- our neck of the woods demand it!

Bob -- for us, it's a necessity

Richard and Beth -- great to hear it! 

Sep 06, 2012 04:34 AM #39
Arizona Home Group RE/MAX Excalibur
The Arizona Home Group - Scottsdale, AZ

I haven't done open houses in about 4 or 5 years and just recently started again. 1st one I did produced 3, possibly 4 solid buyer leads!! I am viewing the open house differntly and even sitting other agent's listings's a different market here in AZ right now, shortage of homes and buyers coming out of the woodwork, so now seems to be the time to embrace some old-school methods :-) 

Sep 06, 2012 07:42 AM #40
Pacita Dimacali
Alain Pinel - Oakland, CA
Alameda/Contra Costa Counties CA

Arizona team --- good for you. By the way, where on your page do you say who are the members of your team?


Sep 06, 2012 07:50 AM #41
Steve Higgins
RE/MAX Kelowna - Kelowna, BC

Hi Pacita,

I like holding open houses, I have picked up many clients that way. I hold open houses any day of the week as you never know when someone maybe looking.

Sep 09, 2012 12:55 AM #42
Nan Jester
Exit Real Estate Gallery Jacksonville Beach, FL - Jacksonville Beach, FL
Realtor, Exit Real Estate Gallery

Since we all know you can get new customers from open houses and make the seller happy they can be a really good idea.

Sep 12, 2012 03:41 AM #43
Debra Gould
Staging Diva / Six Elements Inc. - Toronto, ON
The Staging Diva

Thanks for a great post about the benefits of doing open houses.

As a home buyer who has lived in 4 different cities, I've hired several agents over the years based on how they handled their open houses.

I also bought my last house because I saw an ad for an open house in the weekend newspaper and bought it on Monday.

I have also met many agents during their open houses who I've subsequently recommend to my home staging clients. Hot leads because these are serious sellers who had already gone to the time and expense of decorating their homes to sell quickly and for more money.

Your post has inpsired me to write my own about the 5 Ways Real Estate Agents Scare Clients Away at an Open House to continue the conversation about this important real estate marketing tactic. I've linked back to you of course :)

Sep 12, 2012 07:00 AM #44
Pacita Dimacali
Alain Pinel - Oakland, CA
Alameda/Contra Costa Counties CA

Steve --- I personally like doing open houses. Always good to get a "Feel" of the market based on what potential buyers and seller tell you when they come through the door

Nan --- looking at my sales, 15% were leads from open houses. I'd say it works for me :)

Debra -- absolutely! Glad you're inspired :)

Sep 13, 2012 03:36 AM #45
Teri Eckholm
Boardman Realty - White Bear Lake, MN
REALTOR Serving Mpls/St Paul North & East Metro

Pacita--Nice to see that opens are successful again! I have met many good clients at opens over the years...and have received many referrals from them as well!


Sep 13, 2012 09:00 AM #46
Pacita Dimacali
Alain Pinel - Oakland, CA
Alameda/Contra Costa Counties CA

Teri ---

In my case, open house is always a good marketing tool as well as prospecting tool.


Sep 13, 2012 10:22 AM #47
Inna Ivchenko
Barcode Properties - Encino, CA
Realtor® • Green • GRI • HAFA • PSC Calabasas CA

Beautiful post Pacita!

A lot of agents don't do open houses, some do them  all the time. It is a personal choice and i think, it is more about how comfortable you feel getting there  and being interviewed by almost every visitor.

I'm ok with that:)

Oct 24, 2013 05:06 PM #48
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