Having done a lot of the leg work and bagged a client’s listing, your work is far from done. Simply putting it online, in your store window and sticking up a “for sale” sign isn’t enough.
The inspection is where the property will be made, or broken in sales terms. You’ll want to make sure that it’s presented successfully to potential buyers, or else you can kiss that sale goodbye.
Here are the top five tips for putting on a great open home event.
1) Bring In The Pros
Bringing in a professional home stylist can help to give objective advice to sellers on how to best dress their home for a sales campaign. It’s impossible for many homeowners to separate themselves from the emotion of selling a house – especially if it’s their own home.
A professional stylist gives you the inside knowledge on property presentation, especially when it comes to an open home event. They will often provide styling advice to vendors free of charge, prior to the first inspection.
They will offer advice on things such as using pillows, throws, rugs etc. in order to spruce up the look of the house. They also recommend that you should have your vendors take down family photos, as this will enable potential buyers to envisage the property as their own.
2) Get Your Sellers To Leave For A While
It’s wise to advise your vendors to make themselves scarce during the open house event. This includes any pets that they may have around the property. This is mainly due to the fact that there will be anywhere from 25 to 100 people at the event.
Sellers who stick around are likely to get some valuable feedback from the horse’s mouth so to speak, but this idea can be fraught with peril. Slightly prickly questions can lead to negative interactions between the sellers and potential buyers.
3) Get The Garden In Order
It’s a great idea to pay some attention to the outdoors surrounding the property. Make sure your vendors understand that cleaning up the garden and getting it in order is important – especially the front lawn (if they have one), as this will be the first thing your buyers will see.
Some things are obvious – mow the lawn, cut back the hedges and rake dead leaves. The top pro tip for the garden, is to wash any decking and stone-work, as this will help to add that shine to the properties yard.
Make sure they clean the windows, as this will help to frame the yard perfectly – no one wants to look out of a smeared window. This touching up of the outside of the property should also apply on the inside – so make sure the vendors clean up any dirty towels and empty bottles in the bathroom.
4) Involve Your Senses
Engaging the senses is one of the oldest tricks in the book. The aim will be to make the house feel as homely as possible. Scents and smells are key when it comes to drawing in potential buyers.
Scented candles, reed diffusers, or freshly baked food to leave buyers in a wondrous daze. Think about putting on music for people to listen to whilst they inspect a house, as it helps to create mood – a home without sound will lack personality and ambience.
The little things will make all the difference to possible buyers.
5) Be Safe
Ensure that you tell your sellers to remove any loose, valuable items. You should also ensure that the house is free of hazards such as rogue cables and bottled chemicals. The last thing you’ll want is for someone to get hurt whilst they’re attending your open house.
These standards will have to be maintained for several weeks whilst the open house inspection event is ongoing – you’ll need to be flexible in terms of appointment times, meaning people could arrive at your house at a moment’s notice.
This can be difficult and it’s an intense period of time, but if it helps to pull off a solid sale, you’ll be more than happy to crack on with some minor health and safety checks.