Home selling tip:
Create URGENCY, not DESPERATION.
Over the past few years as the San Francisco real estate market has slowed, I noticed that some of my competitors began to host longer and longer open houses.
First, there were Saturday open houses in addition to Sunday. Next, the times went from 2-4pm to 1-4pm and then, to 1-5pm. I’ve even seen a 12-6pm announcement!
With all due respect to my fellow real estate professionals, I have to object to this trend.
Sure, at first glance, it may seem like a good idea to have more access to a property that’s for sale. A buyer or anyone who is in the neighborhood can go by all day, anytime they want.
What’s my problem, you ask?
Buyer urgency, or lack thereof, is my problem.
In today’s slower real estate market, as listing agents and home sellers, we have to create a sense of urgency for the home buyers. Folks are slow to act these days. They think houses will be around next week, next month, and probably at a lower price.
The longer the open house, the less likely you are to have a crowd of people touring the home together.
Crowded open houses lead to more urgency b/c it gives the perception that the house is in high demand.
Buyers need to feel that there are compelling reasons to act. Competition and the comfort of knowing that others want what you want helps to create logical reasons to act…and act right away lest someone else get their new home!
The industry standard is Sunday 2-4pm. Let’s keep it that way! For that matter, I’d rather host even shorter open houses!
Home sellers: you want to attract the serious home buyers.
Serious buyers are pre-approved for financing, are already working with a Realtor, are educated about the process and are ready to act. They take the process seriously and carve out time to tour homes. If they want to see your house, they will make it to the open house whether it’s 1 hour, 2 hours, or G-d forbid, 6 hours!
And at my listings, I want to see those serious home buyers at the house, at the same time! If they want to spend more time in the house on their own, no problem. We’ll schedule that crucial 2nd showing as a private appointment afterwards.
I excel at marketing, and in particular, targeted marketing. It’s one of the things that comes pretty naturally to me. I have an intuitive sense about how to attract the right customer (and about pricing too though I don’t always get my way).
To stay sharp, I pay attention to how OTHER industries market… Need more proof on the shorter, the better philosophy? Look to the stores. Which sale do you think will have the most success?
30% everything starting April 1st
30% off Jimmy Choo shoes April 1st 10am-2pm ONLY! No exceptions! After 2pm on April 1st, sale ends and prices go back to retail.
Got a question? I’m for sure to have an answer or at least a stubborn opinion. 😉
PS. Accurate (and competitive) pricing are also needed to create urgency and reasons to act. If your house is not priced attractively per today’s market, it won’t matter how long or short your open houses are!