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 :)