Despite the hype that surrounds the idea of holding an open house, Boca Raton houses for sale are vastly underrepresented in that particular area.
According to the MLS, within the next seven days there are 23 open houses scheduled in Boca Raton. That’s out of 2,709 current properties for sale.
That means fewer than 1% of homes for sale hold themselves open. So for prospective sellers of homes in Boca– or anywhere else – who are wondering if holding an open house is a vital part of the sales process, the answer appears to be a resounding, “Probably not.”
Open houses used to be an important sales tool
Once upon a time in the land of real estate, open houses were considered an essential selling tool. People came from miles around to visit homes for sale because there was no other way to see what was inside.
The listing broker and the mortgage broker used the occasion to meet people and add to their customer lists. And sometimes they were even able to sell the house to one of those visitors.
Today, however, the Internet has obviated the need for open houses. Why drive 30 miles to visit a property that you can look at while sitting around in your underwear at home?
Nonetheless, if you are planning to run an open house – or if you’re just planning to sell your home – here are 8 suggestions that will improve the open house experience of those who attend. They’ll also help your Boca Raton real estate agent to acquire some additional customers.
Clean up your kitchen.
As we all know, the kitchen is the showplace of a home. It’s the first and last place buyers look. But they don’t just look at the kitchen. They look in the kitchen. Everywhere. Cabinets, drawers, oven, and even in the refrigerator.
Remember, they will be buying those appliances, as well as the cabinets, sinks, and counter tops.
So make sure all of these places look (and smell) as clean as is humanly possible. A gross kitchen is a huge turn-off.
Clean up your bathrooms
You have to clean the sinks and the showers and the bathtubs and the toilets. You also need to vacuum up the stray hairs on the floor that we all leave behind.
Sure you’re only human, but not when you’re trying to sell your home. That’s when you’re forced to become a lean, mean, cleaning machine.
So remove your bath towels and put out fresh hand towels every day. First, because the appearance of clean, fluffy towels is more appealing. And second, because many of the people coming through your house will use your bathrooms. Unless you want to use the same towels they do, change them each day.
Clean out your medicine cabinets.
Doesn’t anyone respect privacy anymore? No, especially not when your house is for sale. So take anything that is private out of your medicine cabinets and your bathroom drawers. Your medical information is displayed on our prescriptions and identity theft is an unfortunate fact of life today. Don’t make it easy for someone to make your life much harder. Put your medications away somewhere safe.
Remove any valuables
You may keep your jewelry in the dresser so that it’s handy for your own use. But you don’t want it handy for the occasional light-fingered visitor who may see your open house as an opportunity to enhance their own collection.
Similarly, if you have collectibles that are small and valuable financially, or just important to you, remove them and place them somewhere relatively inaccessible and out of sight.
Take your pets for a walk
Leaving your pets in the house is a huge no-no. Many people are not pet lovers, so they will not appreciate the fact that your pooch is just being friendly.
Also, even though you may not notice it, pets leave their own odors behind. It’s a fact of pet life. You are inured to them because you live in the house.
People who don’t live in your house and who do not have pets – but do have noses – will notice those aromas. Clean up around your pet areas and spray around the house and use common sense to minimize pet scents.
Don’t leave your pet in the crate
Some animal lovers may feel this is cruel. Non-pet owners may feel the same way. Even if they don’t, the barking may unnerve them. Don’t take a chance on creating any kind of negative feelings during a potential buyer’s visit to your home.
Ask a friend to do a white glove test.
And a sniff test. If cleaning the house has not been your strong suit previously, it won’t be when it’s time to show off your home.
If you’re not sure, bring in a couple of friends and ask them to give you an opinion. If they say the place looks great, give yourself a round of applause and know you’ve done a good job.
If they say something like, “Well, it’s not so bad…” then hire a cleaning service. It’s worth the small cost to get your home sold.
Clean up the outside.
The old cliché about judging a book by its cover applies to the curb appeal of your home. If potential buyers don’t find the appearance of the front of your house inviting, they are likely to turn around before they get to the front door.
Thinking about selling or buying a home? Call us today.
Marc Jablon, the Jablon Team
New Harbor Realty