How to Host a Successful Open House

An open house is an opportunity for you to showcase your home’s best features, allowing potential buyers to see themselves living within a new space. A successful open house will be organized, warm, inviting, and informative. It should get buyers excited about the property, ideally resulting in multiple offers. But a successful open house requires careful planning and flexibility. That said, here are seven ways to host a successful open house.

If you need assistance selling your house or are looking for a new home or condo in Isle of Palms, SC, contact Jimmy Carroll Realty today.

Do Some Field Work

Before you start deep cleaning and staging your home (which you should absolutely do before an open house), you should take a look at other open houses in your area. Spend a weekend or two browsing other neighborhoods and popping into local open houses. Make notes of what you like and what you don’t. These are some questions you should ask yourself as you view other homes:

  • How does the real estate agent make you feel as you walk through the home?
  • What information is provided to you?
  • What small touches make this home stand out?

In addition, listen to what other potential buyers are saying as they walk through the house to get an idea of the features people are looking for. Listen to the realtor and how they describe the home. What features do they point out, and how do the buyers respond? Take all of this information back home as you begin to plan your open house.


A well thought out open house won’t do you any good if nobody shows up. Use both traditional and creative methods to spread the word about your open house. If you’re working with a local realtor, he/she will do this part for you. They can use their extensive network of buyers, along with their exclusive access to the MLS, to advertise your open house. If you’re not working with a realtor, you’ll need to use social media, flyers, or post an ad in the community newspaper. On the day of your open house, place bright flyers and signs in the local area to direct buyers to your home.

Deep Clean and Stage

Once you’ve set a date for your open house, it’s time to set the stage. This involves a deep clean to get in, under, behind, and around every feature of your home. Guests will look behind items, in closets, and under cabinets. They’ll notice a dusty windowsill or dirty appliances, and you don’t want these things to distract them during their tour. Get rid of clutter and personal mementos that may make it challenging for potential buyers to see themselves in the home.

Staging a home is the process of showcasing your home in the best possible light. Some homeowners are hesitant to stage their homes, as they feel the home is perfect just as it is. But staging is not about the homeowner at all—it’s about helping potential buyers connect emotionally to each space. Consider taking these steps when staging your home for an open house:

  • Deep clean first
  • Get rid of personal items
  • Make space on the counters
  • Open windows and use natural light
  • Pull couches and chairs away from the walls
  • Use area rugs to create more intimate, defined spaces
  • Focus on curb appeal
  • Turn on the lights

Small touches, like fresh flowers in vases or soft music playing in the background, can create a positive ambiance for potential buyers. If you are working with an experienced realtor, he or she will point out things you can do to ensure your home is set up to sell.

Open House Day

Most open houses are scheduled for Sundays since this is a day many people are home from work. If you know when there will be other open houses in your area, schedule yours for the same day to take advantage of the foot traffic in the area. Remove your cars from the driveway, set out snacks or drinks, and either put pets away or take them out of the home completely. Don’t use an air freshener, as it could be too intense for visitors or irritate those with sensitive allergies. A genuinely clean house will smell fine on its own.

Whether you stay on the property during the open house is up to you. Many buyers report that they don’t give their honest feedback when a seller is present, or that they don’t look at a home as closely when they know the seller is around. If you choose to leave during the open house, your experienced realtor will be able to show your home on your behalf and allow buyers to offer honest feedback and ask questions.

Provide Home and Neighborhood Info

Chances are, interested buyers will tour multiple open houses in a single weekend. Print out informative pamphlets or flyers that list out the specifics of the home and some of the local amenities. Make sure this paperwork has your contact info, the asking price of the house, and other information that buyers want but may forget once they drive away. Also, put out business-related paperwork, like the appraisal report, financing options, and a list of recent repairs and additions.

Interact and Engage

If you’re going to stick around for the open house, it’s essential to be a warm and welcoming host without being overbearing. Sit back and allow guests to move through the home on their own time, and be honest with your answers to their questions. Give them privacy and space to walk through the home, but don’t be too stand-offish that they’re afraid to approach you. If you are working with a realtor, you can leave the property and leave the interacting and engaging up to them. This usually makes the buyers feel more comfortable and still allows guests to see your home in the best light.

Follow Up

A successful open house doesn’t end once the last person walks out the door. Your job is to keep your property at the forefront of a buyer’s mind long after they leave. Send a thank-you email to everyone who stopped by and left their contact info, and include a link to the property. This small touch can get buyers thinking about your property and set you apart from the competition. You could even take it a step further and reach out by phone or text the week following the open house to ask each person if they had any additional questions. Again, if you are working with a realtor, they can take care of this part for you.

An open house is a great way to get people talking about your home. As a seller, your goal is to create a buzz in the market about your property and get people excited about what your home has to offer. If you are selling a home in Isle of Palms, a well-thought-out open house can be the difference between your home sitting on the market and a quick, profitable sale.

A Successful Open House Starts With Jimmy Carroll Realty

Now that you know how to host a successful open house, if you’re ready to begin, contact Jimmy Carroll Realty today. Our expert team of realtors can help you create an open house that showcases the best features of your home. We look forward to assisting you!