Most sellers, particularly if this is their first time selling a home, are not aware that many things can influence the sale of their Bellingham home including open houses and showings
Open houses and showings are prime opportunities for sellers to wow potential buyers and make a sale, yet too often sellers jeopardize their chances of getting their house sold by things they do and things they don't do. The following tips should be helpful when your sellers homes have an open house or when it comes time to show their home.
Be flexible on times and dates. Have in mind that there will likely be those last minute showings which may prove to be inconvenient and maddening. However, in order to sell your house you may need to make adjustments. Last-minute showings are not commonplace, but it is important to try and accommodate the showing, because this could be your best opportunity to sell.
Leave the home during an open house or showing. It is important for sellers to leave the home during the open house or showing. Some homeowners, for one reason or another, will insist on staying during the showing, but this will only hinder the showing and scare away potential buyers.
It is important for that sellers know that most potential home buyers will feel uncomfortable touring a home (and opening closets and cupboards) when the homeowner is present. As a result, they will likely cut their showing short. I always encourage sellers to leave the home during showings and open houses to make buyers feel more comfortable.
Don't come back Early. The same rule applies for homeowners who pop in before a showing or open house has ended. The best thing for home owners to do during an open house or showing is to stay away from the home until everyone has left.
Remove all pets prior to the open house or showing. Pets should not be present during a showing. It is important for sellers to know that not everyone is a pet lover, and some buyers may be even be allergic or afraid of your pet. That's why I always encourage sellers to take their pets with them during a showing or open house, if possible.
2. De-clutter. Put away the ceramics collection, toys and things lining the bathroom and kitchen counters. A crowded house makes it look smaller and makes it harder for buyers to imagine it as their own. Staging is really important prior to any open house or potential showing.
3. De-personalize. Take down family photos, trophies and other personal touches, even that book on your nightstand. Buyers need to imagine the house as a blank slate, ready to be occupied and personalized by them.
4. Consider holding an early viewing just for the locals. For instance, if you are having your Bellingham open house from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., invite your neighbors from noon to 1 p.m. It will make them feel good and allow the agent to focus on the most interested parties when the real open house starts.
Joy Brown, Broker
Full time Professional REALTOR®
Windermere Real Estate/Whatcom, Inc.
515 W. Bakerview Rd, Bellingham, Washington 98226
Business:(360) 441-0698Fax: (360) 676-4694
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