We’ve seen them almost everywhere.
Those self-help books that help us gain knowledge, master a certain skill or field of endeavour.
You name it, and there has probably been a ‘Dummies’ book written about something you were interested in or wanted to be better at.
Divorce for Dummies, P.C.’s for Dummies, Marketing for Dummies – even Politics for Dummies (and there are definitely some people in that field who should read it).
I’ve often thought about writing a Real Estate for Dummies book but that may have already been done. Maybe my 8 Insider Secrets/ Myths of Real Estate eBook might count.
Anyway, I thought I might dive a little deeper and concentrate on one important facet of Real Estate, that owners who are selling their own home ignore or get just plain wrong.
Conducting open homes.
Instead of writing a whole ‘Dummies’ book here and now. I’ll give you a few of the most important Do’s and Don’ts that owners undertaking private house sales continue to ignore.
Don’t: Believe that you will get nosey neighbours as your main attendees. This is an old wife’s tale. In my experience (about 7,000ish open homes) around 1 in 10 might be a neighbour, and generally they were there to see the cut of my jib because they were thinking of selling.
Do: This might sound like, “yeah, as if someone would do that…” but… YOU MUST display your address on all marketing sources when you want to run an open home.
There is a bit of a trend, at the moment, where some owners selling their houses are choosing not to display their address (straight from the ‘How to p*ss off a buyer’ handbook). However, there are cases where ‘secretive’ seller actually advertise an Open Home – but potential buyers don’t know where to turn up to!
Display your bloody address! You can then avoid having to wonder, “Why didn’t anyone turn up?”
Don’t: Not be there! If you set a time and advertise an open home, the least you can do is be there to greet potential buyers. Always be there and ready 10-15 minutes before the scheduled start time.
Do: Get name, rank and serial number from every viewer who comes to your door at an open home. If it appears a group is looking together, ask who is the person interested in buying the property and get their details. No-one walks in without at least supplying their name and a contact number.
Don’t: Follow buyers around like a love-sick puppy. Let them look without distraction or pressure, and watch their body language etc. Sure, keep an eye on them and be at a reasonable distance in case they have any specific questions. Let them know you are there to help, but don’t bug them by waffling on.
Do: Ask them “what do you think?” as they are winding up or leaving. If there are multiple groups, call them later that day, or next, and ask that question; then follow up with, “I need your help. What do you think it will sell for?” That’s THE most important feedback you need to hear.
Basically, don’t be afraid to run open homes and conduct them with confidence. They are an important piece of your marketing armoury and can be a great indicator of whether, or not, you are offering an attractive proposition to property buyers.