When I talk to agents who tell me they're looking for more leads, one of my first questions is 'how often do you hold open houses, and how do you hold them?' Their responses are pretty telling.
Reasons agents don't hold open houses
- They think they don't work
- They don't have any listings
- They don't want to work weekends
The truth is open houses do work - but you have to be methodical in working them - and at The Andrews Group we give our agents the tools to do exactly that. We also make it easy for agents who don't have listings to host open houses on behalf of listing agents who aren't going to hold an open house themself.
As for agents who don't want to work weekends - frankly, many of them change their tune when they see how effective open houses are for their colleagues.
Keys to a Successful Open House
Marketing Your Open House
Just as you can't be a secret agent and expect to get 'come list me' calls, you can't hold a secret open house and expect visitors!
This is the starting point - you'll want to ensure that you've updated the MLS property listing with the date and time of the open house. If you're not the listing agent and are just hosting, then you'll want to make sure the listing agent or office staff has taken care of this step for you - don't leave it to chance!
This step matters a great deal because the MLS open house record typically is pushed out to a large number of popular home search websites, often generating a large portion of your event foot traffic.
Neighborhood Pointer Signs
At The Andrews Group we stress the systematic use of neighborhood pointer signs, whenever permitted by local ordinances. Andrews Groups agents are encouraged to place eight directional signs leading homebuyers and curious neighbors in from around the neighborhood and beyond - ideally the furthest out signs pull traffic from major artery roads into the subdivision and to the event.
We also teach our agents to attach two yellow balloons to each sign - not only are these brand consistent attention grabbers - the short lifespan of balloons makes it obvious to drivers that the event is going on now - literally driving more traffic to the event.
Have some time? Door knocking in the same neighborhood as the open house is a great way to drum up additional attendance. You can even set aside a separate time block for neighbors to preview the home before it is open the general public.
When the open house begins its time to make a great first impression on your attendees! That means being a consummate professional, who is prepared to ask common questions about the property. Would you believe we've walked in on agents sitting on the couch with the ball game up?
Crucially, you've got to be prepared to ask attendees whether they're currently represented by another agent - and if not, to collect their information so you can follow up with them later.
Following Up After The Event
Relationships are built over time and multiple interactions. Unrepresented buyers from an open house are no different - turning those leads into clients takes follow up week after week with them.
To manage your leads and not lose track of anyone as you grow your database, you should leverage a Customer Relationship Manager or CRM - at The Andrews Group we use myWeichert powered by KVCore - one of the leaders in the industry.