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Toronto Real Estate Blog
The truth about open houses
Tuesday, 12 February 2013, 02:08:22 PM

I know I’m not going to be popular with some of my real estate colleagues with this blog post, but the truth is, an open house won’t help sell your house.

Often, when I am interviewed as a candidate to list a property for sale, I often hear the “main marketing plan” of other agents is centered around the open house. I’ve even heard realtors suggest spending lots of marketing dollars on promoting the public open house through local newspapers.

However, a recent study from the National Association of Realtors found that less than 2% of buyers actually came from an open house. Not what you expected isn’t it?

So why is it that open houses are so popular if the likelihood of finding a buyer for your home is so remote?

Having an open house serves a very important purpose - for the real estate agent - it gives them a database of potential clients.

If you think about it, at an open house, you get all kinds of people walking through the home. Some people might want to get a sense of how much their home might be worth… Others walking through might just want to get a look at what's on the market. This is a great environment for a realtor to build his database of buyers and sellers.

The reality is, if you’re serious buyer – you’ll book an appointment to see the house. If you’re ready to buy and shopping around for a home, the last thing you want to do is go through an open house when there are 5 other people walking through at the exact same time. Virtually all serious buyers want to take their time to view the home and see if it is the perfect fit and they will want to do that (privately) without all of those other people there.

I won’t deny that there was a time where the open house was an important marketing tool to sell the property, but I believe the internet and the way people shop for homes today has significantly changed.

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