There are many things you can do to sell your Raleigh NC property. And it’s a combination of these many things that will inevitably sell your house. You will want to adopt a strategy that is best suited to the local market conditions and area.
Is an Open House right for your Raleigh home? Will it be worth the time and energy? In this blog, we will review the pros and cons of an open house so you can decide if it’s right for you.
Pros and Cons of an Open House in Raleigh
Generally speaking, the more traffic you generate the easier it will be to sell the home. The quality of the traffic, and their ability to obtain financing, is hit-or-miss with this technique.
We are in a digital age where even our pizzas can be ordered online. Online marketing remains the main tool by which to sell a house. However, we have sold many houses with simple road signage and a flyer box in the front yard.
One thing we’ve learned while buying and selling houses in Wake County is that we would rather have multiple ways to find 1 buyer, than 1 way to find multiple buyers. This sounds counter-intuitive, but for whatever reason, it’s impossible to tell which method will sell the house. Also, markets change and some methodologies abruptly stop working. This is why we prefer a combination of methods, both digital and conventional, to make sure every home is sold faster, and for more money.
Buyers Like Open Houses
An Open House usually brings in all types of people. Some of whom are just window-shoppers, others are ready to make an offer on the spot.
What most people love, is that they are typically able to walk around the house without any high-pressure sales. This gives them the chance to get a feel for the property and the ability to imagine themselves living there. While a private showing is more one-on-one, an Open House will allow buyers to look around at their own pace without feeling rushed.
Exposure for the Owner or the Agent?
We like open houses because, as a company that buys houses in Raleigh, it gives us the opportunity to meet new clients in our local area. This is also true of agents where open houses gives them exposure to their local market, as well as potential homeowners who are in the early stages of looking for a home.
An Open House is not necessary to sell a home. While it is always an opportunity to penetrate a market for a professional home buyer, or an agent, it is not necessarily desirable for a home owner.
Keep in mind that we do open houses on properties that are vacant, so there is no real disruption in my living situation, and a lot less risk from theft.
Cons of Having an Open House in Raleigh:
The risk of theft during an Open House is very real. With so many people converging in finite space over a period of a couple of hours, many things can go missing. Items that frequently disappear during these thefts:
- Cell Phones
Then there is always the possibility that the home is being cased for a burglary. If you decide to go through with an open house on your primary residence you’ll want to check, and double check, that all the above items have been locked away or have been removed from the premises. If you are selling a vacant home then this is not as much of a risk.
Most sellers stay away during an open house. It can be awkward for everyone. You probably don’t want to watch people judging every detail of your home. Buyers do not want to feel as if they are intruding upon you, nor do they want to feel as if you are breathing down their necks.
You will need to get the house spotless and then hit the road. You should plan to be away for a few hours. Cleaning, staging, leaving and wondering who is walking through your house can be very stressful!
Low Success Rate
According to the National Association of Realtors, only 8% of buyers find their home through an Yard Sign/Open House Sign. 51% of buyers find their home online, and 34% find their home by working directly with an agent.
Where buyers found the home they purchased:
- Internet: 51%
- Real estate agent: 34%
- Yard sign/open house sign: 8%
- Friend, relative or neighbor: 4%
- Home builder or their agent: 2%
- Directly from sellers/Knew the sellers: 1%
- Print newspaper advertisement: 1%
(Source National Association of Realtors)
Dealing With Unqualified Buyers
An open house will attract anyone and everyone. You might have people off the street, walking in and attempting a verbal offer. Getting offers from unqualified buyers can waste everyone’s time. Make sure your agent knows to only get offers from individuals who have been pre-qualified.
Holding an open house is part of a much larger strategy. Whether or not you decide to hold an open house is dependent on the local market, and your particular circumstances. As of this writing, the housing market in Raleigh NC favors the seller making an Open House unnecessary. If you are selling your primary residence and have a lot of valuables, the risk may not be worth the effort.
In November of 2017 we held an Open House on a property that we bought for cash, renovated and resold. The property was vacant and professionally staged, so there were no personal belongings that we had to account for. This also gave us an opportunity to network with people in the Raleigh area so it made sense for us. So in this case, holding an Open House made sense for owners, and the agent.