An Open House usually goes on for 1 ½ – 3 hours. This gives you little time to attract buyers and make them fall in love with YOUR home so you have to make the most of the opportunity. Dirty, cluttered houses are not acceptable. Buyers need to be able to picture themselves cooking in your kitchen, bathing in your bathroom and enjoying their family and friends in your living room. If you have a great architectural feature like a 12-foot high ceiling, deep crown moulding or a custom tiled fireplace no one is going to appreciate it if there’s a dirty cat litter box hidden behind the sofa but still within smelling distance.
I tell homeowners that we need to appeal to all the senses at an Open House. I will light a candle (sometimes the home owner will bake cookies or bread), soft music will play in the background, and the natural light in the home will be optimized.
I recommend sellers come up with a list of items they want to put away during the Open House including valuables such as jewelry or special collections; prescription medication; tablets or cell phones. It is recommended that family photos and pet bowls are out of site, kitchen and trash cans are emptied,items on kitchen counters are minimal and towels in the bathroom are clean and folded. Fresh flowers are always a welcomed visual in the kitchen and in the bathrooms. Making sure the entryways are clean and free from hazard is a must. Seasonal plants and décor to welcome guests at the main entry set a nice tone for an open house. Pets should be out of the home during the Open House. I realize that some or all of this may seem unnecessary but I assure you that all of this matters a great deal to potential buyers who may be viewing 3-5 Open House events on a weekend.