Getting Ready for an Open House

By: Paige Martin

An open house can be a wonderful way for a seller to advertise their home for sale to many people in a very short period of time. It's also an opportunity to showcase the finer points of the home in a way that pictures just can't capture. However, before hosting an open house, it's important to keep a few things in mind.

The first thing to consider is when you hold your open house. Most open houses take place on weekends when potential buyers have the time to stop by the property and check it out. It's also important that you schedule your open house around nice weather, if possible. Most people will want to stay in their own homes if it is raining but will be more likely to tour other peoples homes on sunny and warm days.

Then make a list of all the things that need to be done before the open house. This includes making small repairs, clearing clutter that will detract from the space, and taking down personal items such as photographs. A buyer needs to be able to envision themselves in the home and the potential for making it their own. If there are kid's toys lying around, and pictures of people that they don't know on the walls, it will be much harder for them to picture the house as their own. Another advantage to de-cluttering and putting away personal items is that the emptier a space is, the larger it appears and this is true even for the walls.

It's then important to remember that a dirty home is not an attractive home. Dust on the shelves and dirty carpets and floorings do not make someone want to bring in their own personal items. Before the open house, make sure that every surface has been given a thorough cleaning, the furniture is all polished and that all floors have been cleaned. It can also be a good idea to give dingy walls a clean look by giving them a fresh coat of paint. If you decide to paint the walls, be sure to allow for plenty of time for them to dry and to get the fresh paint smell out of the house.

Lastly, brew a pot of coffee or bake some cookies. Not only will these provide refreshments for the potential buyers but they will also bring an inviting scent into the home.

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