The Market

Open houses are great for agents. For selling your apartment? Not so much.

By Teri Karush Rogers | February 8, 2011 - 2:45PM 

Whether by design or circumstance, open houses may be far more likely to bring your agent potential clients than to attract a buyer for your apartment.   That’s a contention we’ve heard before, and it’s echoed by real estate agents and others weighing in on a NYT story about a Brooklyn couple who accepted a low offer because they were tired of prepping for open houses.   

“After 29 years of selling real estate & holding Open Houses, I know it is more likely for an agent to meet a new client, than to sell the subject property,” writes a Chicago real estate agent. Another adds, “An Open House is not for the seller – it is for your Real Estate Agent – he/she gets to meet lots of people that are looking for houses – probably not yours. With technology, a listing can have lots of photos, panoramic views and lots of other information. Why invite strangers into your house. Many serious buyers use the web. If they are in fact serious they set up an appointment.”    

Short of seeing some reliable statistics from brokerages about how many sales are generated from open houses, we don’t have a definitive answer on this one…but it might be a good enough reason to limit the the number of open houses you hold if they're too disruptive to your life.

"I would never have an Open House every weekend," writes one real estate broker in response to the NYT story. "Two open houses would be my limit and I would make sure every agent out there knew to attend because they will be the ones selling your home....I would stipulate only 2 open houses for a maximum of 3 hours each."

 (NY Times)

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