If you're selling your home, you might want to consider holding a lesser-known type of open house called a broker's open house or broker's preview.

Here are some things about open houses:

  1. It gives the Listing agent an opportunity to market your home to other agents who might see that your home matches the requirements of a buyer.
  2. There are other reasons for holding open houses, too. Listing agents who "farm" a particular neighborhood use them as an opportunity to meet with other local homeowners who will someday be selling their home. Your agent may hope to list their homes in the future.
  3. If an open house visitor is not represented and doesn’t particularly like the house the agent is holding open, the agent WILL try to enlist them as a client and suggest other properties.
  4. If your Realtor is a high-profile, high volume agent, they are probably not doing their own open houses, leaving them to less experienced agents.
  5. If you put an Open House sign in the yard, you can’t really control who attends;  nor can the agent constantly watch everyone who comes to the open house at all times. There are really no controls to keep visitors from going through your medicine cabinets and personal items or casing your house for future visits. There is also the security aspect of letting complete strangers in your home, that give your phony information.
  6. The open house is a good way for your neighbors to check out how you live and maybe get some decorating ideas, and a good opportunity for the agent to try to influence them to consider listing too.


With easy access today’s consumers have to listing information online – multiple photos, detailed descriptions and measurements, video, valuation, neighborhood information, etc., many legitimate real estate shoppers are able to narrow the field fairly easily, but Open houses can be effective. If your agent can get the word out about the open house before hand, and inform the public about an up coming open house thru mailings, flyers and Web based advertising tools. Then your home has to be staged right and must look appealing inside and out. Buyers want to see a home they can see themselves moving in right away. They do not want to view a fixer at an open house. Think eye candy all the way.

During an open house your home is on display for likely buyers. Make your home shine during the open house. The agent should partner with a lender and have mortgage information on hand at the open house.  Open houses still attract prospective home buyers and agents hope to convince some of those home buyers to become their clients. They may also tell their friends about your house, creating more "word of mouth" advertising.