Is The Jig Up On Open Houses?

Are open houses an efficient sales tool for sellers? I am up front with my clients selling Palos Verdes real estate. I tell them that I will hold occasional public open houses for them; statistics show that only 3% of homes are sold to buyers walking into an open house. Plus there is the security issue. I cannot be in every room at every minute and we receive periodic notices from other Realtors whose clients have had items stolen during open houses.

The Sunday LA Times Real Estate section had an article dealing with the open house issue. The Los Angeles Times reported that some sellers are now questioning the importance of open houses as a selling tool. There is the usual feeling of displacement as the seller has to vacate his home for several hours on the weekend as well as the feeling that his privacy is being invaded. The article infers that public open houses actually benefit the Realtors as it is an opportunity to meet new potential clients and that open houses draw people who “are more likely to be looking for decorating tips”.

A great reason for open houses is the instant feedback from the public regarding the condition and price of the home. And there is always that 3% chance that you could find your buyer. Do I agree with this article? I have mixed feelings about public open houses. I absolutely recommend broker open houses to my clients as 40% of buyers come from Realtor contact.

Join The Discussion

2 thoughts on “Is The Jig Up On Open Houses?”

  • Sandy DeAngelis


    I have always done Open Houses because I love in a close knit neighborhood and most of the neighbors have friends who would love to live there. I also feel that the first one or two seems to “announce to the area” that it is available!!

    I also love Open Houses because it puts the whole neighborhood to work to find a buyer who will be a good neighbor!


  • Robin Fenchel

    We have found greater success in holding Open Houses than the statistics indicate. We hold Open Houses regularly in and around UC Irvine where homeowners and buyers frequently stop by to find out about the local market conditions.

    In addition, the Open Houses enable out-of-area real estate agents who may not have local Board access to show our listings on the weekends. The demand for housing is driven by the proximity of both UCI and the top-rated elementary and high school within this community.

    Parents of UCI students often come from a distance, and appreciate being able to discuss the availability of off-campus housing during the weekend and view the current inventory (on our laptop)at the Open House or at the end of the day in person.

    As a direct result of holding Open Houses, we just opened escrow on two of our listings in which we represented both buyer and seller, and assisted buyers in the purchase of two of our collegues listings in the same neighborhood. It’s really all about what works in your particular niche market.

Compare listings