With new real estate technologies now saturating the market, are open houses still effective home-selling tools?
Real estate technology has grown rapidly over the past few years with the introduction of interactive walk-through programs, drone footage and virtual reality tours. While these technologies allow consumers a quick and convenient way to view a home, online property viewing isn’t the same as seeing a property in real time. According to the Consumer and Market Trends in Real Estate report by the National Association of Realtors® and Google, 90 percent of home buyers searched online during their home buying process. So, is the open house on its way out?
Not quite. Here are three reasons why:
1. Unexpected interest – Yes, open houses do draw in casual shoppers who aren’t actually looking to buy, but this is only a small percentage of the crowd that you can expect. Buyers who aren’t actively looking or aren’t using an agent to assist them in their home search might see a sign for your open house and decide to drop by. These accidental visits could end in a new client for you, an offer, or even a closed deal.
2. Browsing without pressure – Viewing homes online is convenient, but open houses allow consumers to get the full experience at a leisurely pace. During an open house, potential homebuyers can get a feel for the property without the pressure of a 15-minute viewing appointment, and they can ask the listing agent any questions they may have onsite. They can even take measurements to figure out if their furniture and belongings will fit.
3. Meet new buyers – Aside from identifying a buyer for the property, one major benefit of hosting an open house for listing agents is meeting new buyer clients. While the property you’re showing might not be right for a particular buyer, you may know of a property on the market that’s just what that buyer wants. Open houses give you an opportunity to talk to many buyers, see what they’re looking for and possibly match them with another listing. Open houses are also great places to get hired. Consumers who haven’t quite taken the steps to list their home may be impressed by your open house and call on you to list their property when the time comes.