Let me tell you, it is SO important to prepare for an Open House!
Yesterday I held an Open House at my house. For 2 hours, anyone interested can come in and visit the house, some are curious neighbors, of course, but most are serious or semi-serious potential buyers.
I would like to share with you the results, as well as my tips on how to prepare for an Open House. By the way, the same tips apply for one-on-one visits, of course.
This post is a follow on to my previous post on Staging my own house for sale, so you might want to read about what I did to stage my house for sale.
Yesterday morning was a cleaning blitz! Vacuum the floors, wash the kitchen and bathroom floors, wash the toilets and sink, wipe the mirrors, wipe the dust.
Then removal of all the personal items from the night stands, the bathrooms (tooth brushes, shampoos, hygienic products, waste baskets, etc) and putting out some fresh towels. All the clothes and shoes should be put away and neatly arranged inside your closets, as people OPEN the closets!
Next, I got to work on the kitchen. Polished the stainless steel appliances, washed the glass top island, removed EVERYTHING from the counter tops, except the toaster and the tea kettle (both stainless steel and polished). To prepare for an open house or a visit, it is super important to remove your dish rack, soaps and kitchen towels as well. And no dishes in the sink!
The exterior (or the curb appeal) being the first glimpse the visitors get needs to look appealing as well. It is deep fall here and leaves are flying… So my husband made sure that all leaves were cleaned off the front lawn and the steps.
Phew! It took an intensive couple of hours. But the work was not quite finished. I went to buy a simple bouquet of fresh cut flowers to put on the kitchen table and, as a final touch, I baked a banana bread! It was Sunday, so I had more time and I timed it so it would smell GOOD in the house when people walked in. Not only did the house smell delicious, but my broker offered the visitors a piece of home made banana bread (nice touch :)).
Well, I am happy to let you know that all this effort was not in vain. The Open House attracted 26 visitors within 1.5 hours. People were commenting that they have rarely seen such an ‘impeccable’ house and even asked my broker if someone actually lived here :). When visitors see other interested potential buyers, it creates a sense of urgency and competition (which is excellent for the seller).
We received TWO offers tonight! All this (hard) work is paying off!
You can watch my spontaneous video, which I made in the morning, as I was doing the preparation:
If you would like to optimize the sale of YOUR house (time wise and money wise), follow Home Staging Step-by-Step.
We also created a Find information by topic category page on preparing house for sale.
If you haven’t already done so,