When selling a home your success or failure often boils down to the open house. Home sellers with an excellent open house draw in many potential buyers, while those with a lackluster presentation drive them away. Most home buyers make up their decision based on first impressions, so deciding to take the time and properly set up a wowing open house is important. Thankfully, by following a few easy steps, brought to you by the best minds in realty, this is achieved without too much hassle or expense.
Haul Out the Trash
HGTV recommends eliminating half of your home's clutter, either by renting a storage facility or hiring a junk removal service. "Clutter can cost a sale. Rent a storage unit or portable pod for extraneous pieces of furniture or knickknacks. Another idea is to ask a friend if you can borrow some space in his or her garage."
Outside of clearing away unwanted items, also be sure to clean up every room and make the aesthetics of each minimal. De-personalize the house. Buyers want to see themselves living there, not you.
There's an App for That
Bankrate advises home sellers utilize social media and other Internet services to their fullest extent. It's essentially free advertising that can sometimes do wonders. "Make sure your agent uses the latest technology to market your house. Agents can advertise open houses on a host of popular real estate sites, such as Realtor.com, Trulia.com, Zillow.com, and portals on Yahoo and Google," says Joan Pratt, real estate broker with RE/MAX Professionals in Castle Pines, Colo.
By using the Internet and online mobile resources, you're also saving money on paper flyers and brochures. Bankrate acknoledges, "these days, many agents put all of that information online, says Pat Vredevoogd Combs, past-president of the National Association of Realtors and vice president of Coldwell Banker AJS Schmidt in Grand Rapids, Mich. People are more likely to read the material online, she says. And she finds that most of her attendees have reviewed it before they come to the open house."
Organize the Cabinets
Realtor.com suggests that "storage space is a vital selling point of any property. More is more when it comes to the nooks and crannies of where to put belongings. Cluttered linen closets, kitchen cabinets and bedroom closets make it appear that your home doesn't have enough storage. Solve this issue by streamlining and organizing all these spaces -- we guarantee a buyer is going to look."
US News believes that you shouldn't be at the open house, or if you are that you need to have limited to no interaction with potential buyers. "You shouldn't be home during an open house. If you're absent, buyers will feel more comfortable asking questions to the realtor, and discussing the benefits and drawbacks of your home. You'll also feel better not having to hear all of the potential buyers' opinions first hand. Find something fun to do that will take your mind off of things. And if you have pets, make sure you take them with you."