How to Prepare for an Open House: Part 1

April 11, 2018

Whether you are hosting or attending an open house, it is important to be fully prepared beforehand. In this two-part blog, we’ll share a few exclusive tips from Long & Foster agents about how to prepare for an open house – as the seller and as the buyer.

Tips for Home Sellers

If your house has recently gone on the market and you plan to host an open house, there are a few things you should do to ensure your home is show-ready.

1. Your home should be immaculate. You may have up to 20 potential buyers touring your house at any given time, so it is important for it to feel open and clutter-free, said Debban Dodrill, a real estate agent in Long & Foster’s Reston, Virginia, office.

2. While a pleasant smell is a must, don’t overwhelm your potential buyer with scents in every room, recommends Lisa Leven Kahn, a real estate agent in Long & Foster’s Haverford, Pennsylvania, office. Adding a subtle scent in the kitchen, such as cinnamon or vanilla, should be just enough.

3. Protect yourself and your belongings. During an open house, many strangers will be in and out of your home. Be sure to remove all valuables and medications, suggests Gary Ditto, a real estate agent in Long & Foster’s Bethesda Gateway office in Bethesda, Maryland.

4. Plan to be gone during the open house, said Carolyn White, a real estate agent in Long & Foster’s Triad office in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. To avoid awkwardness, it is recommended that the seller not be present at the time your home is being shown to a potential buyer.

5. Provide as much information as you can. It is a good idea for you and your Realtor to provide packets chock-full of information and photos. Include a floorplan of the home, title and insurance information, a copy of the survey and your current title policy, recommends Pete Romani, a real estate agent in Long & Foster’s Fredericksburg, Virginia, office. You want your open house visitors to leave well-informed and excited about your home.

Next week, we’ll share tips about how to prepare for an open house if you’re a buyer.


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