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Open Houses Suck… a case study

by Joe Montenigro on October 18, 2010 · 2 comments
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South Jersey Real Estate

4 open houses over 4 weeks, I know it’s not a scientific study, but I already know the answer to the question of “Do open houses work?” 

Back in the day when I was a newbie, I did about 40 open houses a year and it was a good prospecting tool and to help build my database of potential buyers and even some sellers. Selling the house was almost secondary but they DID sell the home roughly once out 50 to 100 open houses…. yes that’s a paultry 1% to 2% success rate.

So this month, my four open houses panned out like this:

1. 5 neighbors, 1 prospect with a house to sell. In fairness, I DID invite the neighbors by putting flyers on their mailbox

2. No one came. Since this house is one of my flips, I installed 3 smoke detectors, hung the fire extinguisher, measured the windows for blinds and picked some weeds…. lots of fun.

3. 4 vistors, 3 can’t get a mortgage and 1 might qualify for $50k less than the asking price. Met some nice people, but not too productive.

4. 1 visitor who has a house to sell and they openly offered the fact that their house is overpriced and probably won’t sell….. nice. And one couple who was actually qualified and serious, but already had an offer on another home…. coincidentally that was my listing too 🙂

So, roughly 16 hours of time and energy, no solid leads for me or my sellers. But I did get to write this blog article 🙂

 Thanks for Reading…..

Joe

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  • Matthew Milner

    Joe – Interestingly enough I found this blog entry while searching specifically for open houses.

    See, Realtor.com has a link to your latest blog entry on your listings. Unfortunately, the link is right below the nice banner detailing the times and dates of your open house. HA! Come to Joe’s open house then read about how Joe thinks open houses stink.

    Refreshing honesty!

    Being self employed has its ups and downs. I’m right there with you on that – but complaining publicly on the internet – when your blog is linked to the most visited real estate website in the country? Bad form. I for one would never contract with an agent with this outlook and will definitely not visit your open houses.

    Talk about a self fulfilling prophecy! A blog about how terrible open houses are ends up turning buyers away from your open houses. Is that ironic or what?

    Good luck!

    Matt

    • Thanks for the comments Matt…. glad you found my post refreshing and honest but sorry for the bad form….Yes I’m a cynic and a smartass, but I am NOT a complainer !

      I thought I’d give an agent’s perspective on open houses and yes I purposely juxtaposed the open house ad and the blog post saying they stink…. I thought it was funny and a little ironic too ! Don’t take it too seriously. It would be a shame for you to miss my open house, we have Free Beer and pony rides… it would be your loss 😉

      I agree that you should work with an agent who you like…. and if you’re into the bubbly, enthusiastic, newbie type….gag gag….there are plenty of those agents out there, but I think you would be silly to select a home (or an open house) based on the agent’s personality…. I generally don’t move in with my customers so they don’t have to like me THAT much……they usually just want me for my good advice and guidance thru the process. 🙂

      Good luck to you too in finding a nice home (and an agent that you like).

      Joe

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