My first experience with "door knocking"

Real Estate Agent with Grand Lux Realty 914-419-0270 (NY),, (MT) 406-270-3667, more information to be provided shortly 10301213186

Some folks have suggested that people who door knock are needy beggars.  They must be if they're walking the streets and banging on doors.  And they are incredibly annoying.  Maybe even a bit slimy. Because of those negative connotations, as well as potential safety issues, I've stayed away from door knocking.  Until now.


My sphere in my location is still small, and I really need to be meeting new people face-to-face. I need more people to know who I am and what I do. So the first attempt at door knocking was relatively simple.


My new partner in a "farming" effort and I are holding an open house this weekend at one unit within the area where we are now marketing.  We put together an invitation to encourage people to attend the open house and we decided the best way to distribute the information was in person.  Face-to-face.  So we went knocking on ~300 doors in a development near us.  If anyone answered the door, we just told them we were inviting them to come to the open house.  We also added that if they had family or friends who wanted to move into the area, it would be a great time to send them over.  And we handed them the invitation.  Easy-peasy.


So how did it go?


About 60% of the people were not at home so we just left materials in the door.


About 15% were home but didn't come to the door to see what we left until after we had left our materials and made it down the path (some WD40 might be useful so we wouldn't hear the shreeeech of unoiled hinges!).


About 20% answered the door and briefly thanked us for the information.  Less than 1% asked a question or two. An even smaller percent were cranky, and only one person showed up at the door in their boxers.


So was it worth it?  


We won't know if door-knocking for an open house was worth it until after our Open House this weekend.  If we get a fair amount of traffic from those flyers and brief face-to-faces, then yes, it was worth it.  In terms of coming across as annoying, most people didn't seem to be annoyed but were quite open to at least hearing what we were there for (although much of that could be because we weren't really asking anything about them or their interest in selling.)


What I do know is this is a method of marketing that makes me anxious.  Not because I have any problem talking to people but because I wasn't invited to their home, and every time I knocked I just hoped I wasn't interrupting them.  I didn't like the feeling at all.  Maybe I would have felt better if it was nice and warm out and people were relaxing outside of their homes; but making them get off their couch or up from their desks was anxiety-producing.


Would I do it again?  Um.... the jury is still out.



Posted by


Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat

Licensed Associate Broker, CBR®

Grand Lux Realty, Inc.

428 Main Street

Armonk, NY 10504 *

* still supporting Monroe NY, Orange & Rockland counties.


914-419-0270 (cell)


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Carolyn Shipp
Source 1 Real Estate - Mineral Wells, TX
Mineral Wells Texas Real Estate

I have done it in the past a time or two, but like you, I was very uncomfortable, so have not made it a part of my marketing.  

Nov 21, 2014 01:56 AM #1
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty 914-419-0270 (NY),, (MT) 406-270-3667, more information to be provided shortly - Kalispell, MT
The House Kat

Carolyn Shipp - Thanks for commenting.  There are so many other ways to reach people now-a-days, I'm not sure it's necessary.  On the other hand, if it could help then perhaps I should remain open to the idea.

Nov 21, 2014 01:59 AM #2
Women of Westchester Working Together
Women of Westchester Working Together - West Harrison, NY
Women helping Women get ahead

Good for you, Kat.  It's much easier if you have a purpose for being there (like you did).  I wouldn't enjoy doing stuff like that either.  - Debbie

Nov 21, 2014 02:08 AM #3
Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI
HomeSmart Realty West & Geneva Financial, Llc. - Carlsbad, CA
Presence, Persistence & Perseverance

Kat: Most of the people at home most probably thought you were members of Watchtower. Smart that you went out as two people; keep safe!

Nov 21, 2014 02:32 AM #4
John Meussner
Mason-McDuffie Mortgage, Conventional Loans, Jumbo Loans, FHA, 203(k), USDA, VA, - Walnut Creek, CA
#MortgageMadeEasy Walnut Creek, CA 484-680-4852

Well Kat, another way of looking at it is 20% of people got to meet you and now know who you are - in that way, it was already a success.  I think you have to have a comfort level to effectively do this type of marketing, but if you can get there I don't think there's anything wrong with door knocking.

Nov 21, 2014 02:38 AM #5
Beth and Richard Witt
Long Island Cash Home Buyer - Huntington, NY
Long Island Cash Home Buyer 516-330-6940

Oh my Kat I sure did relate to your feelings... When I first got into the business 35 years ago this was a big thing and I hated it.... but I did it... I had a 1000 home farm and I knocked on those doors no less than once a month and yes it paid off.... 

Please don't judge the results of one Open House... try it a few times and them decide... Lots of my agents their kids to drop off the fliers but I do think it's more productive when the agent does it... Good luck...

Nov 21, 2014 04:16 AM #6
Nicole Doty - Gilbert Real Estate Expert
Zion Realty - Gilbert, AZ
Broker/Owner of Zion Realty

People door knocked when I first got licensed back in the late 90's. I had an old partner who did it and it never quite got good enough results that I felt the need to put it in to my rotation of marketing strategies. I think location is a big part of it. People just don't open their doors where I'm at unless I would be delivering them a pizza. That would be an expensive marketing campaign though and how the heck would I carry around all those pizzas?

Nov 21, 2014 05:51 AM #7
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Hello Kat,  Great, have a plan and work your plan, that is the key to making more.

Nov 21, 2014 09:36 AM #8
Andrea Bedard
Thompson Company, REALTORS® - Silver Spring, MD
M.A.; REALTOR® Silver Spring, MD and beyond

You are braver than I am Kat! I agree with Richard and Beth though, you can't measure success by doing something once. Hopefully you'll have some visitors because of your door knocking.

Nov 21, 2014 12:13 PM #9
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty 914-419-0270 (NY),, (MT) 406-270-3667, more information to be provided shortly - Kalispell, MT
The House Kat

Debbie - I didn't enjoy it, although perhaps it would be easier if I did it more often?

Norm - And I was holding folded flyers - I did think that they probably thought I was handing out religious info.  

John - Thanks for commenting. I know as a home owner, there are certain times of day I definitely wouldn't want to be interrupted (dinner time) but otherwise, I'd listen (briefly).

Richard/Beth - Thank you for the encouragement. I know an agent in my office who door-knocked expire listings and he got a 1.6M listing (and it sold) from an expired.  She thought he was a go-getter.  

Nicole - Haha, you made me laugh.  I could just picture you showing up at a door with a hot pizza - yes, very expensive. You'd need a little cart.

Will - Yes, a plan is definitely helpful. Measuring success and adjusting also!

Andrea - I hope so too - it will be a bit disappointing if not!  Although I did burn some calories walking around so it wasn't wasted.

Nov 21, 2014 07:35 PM #10
Conrad Allen
Re/Max Professional Associates - Webster, MA
Webster, Ma, Realtor

Hi Kat.  If door knocking didn't work the politicians wouldn't do it.  I door knocked for years.  It was well worth it.

Nov 21, 2014 07:58 PM #11
Scott Webster
William Raveis Real Estate, Mortgage & Insurance - Wilton, CT

Good for you for trying this out, Kat! It takes courage, I'm sure!

Nov 22, 2014 09:24 AM #12
Kat Palmiotti
Grand Lux Realty 914-419-0270 (NY),, (MT) 406-270-3667, more information to be provided shortly - Kalispell, MT
The House Kat

Conrad - That's a vote for "yes!"  We did get two people who mentioned the flyer so I guess that was good.  One came specifically because of the flyer and one just hung around outside her house wanting to chat.  So that was good.

Scott- Thank you!  Yes, it felt a bit awkward to me.

Nov 23, 2014 06:13 AM #13
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