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I received another soliciation for a real estate coaching program this morning. The opening line was, "Do Open Houses Work?" Okay so as a very curious REALTOR® that truly believes they can work I thought, let's hear what he had to say.
 
Take a look at this information in this video:
 

 

Source: Used under standard YouTube license terms.

As a disclosure, this is a Toronto-based real estate trainer that sells his coaching program across North America to real estate agents from all brands: local, national and international. Whether or not he is a certified coach or if he has ever been a licensed real estate agent, I don't know. But, his words are mimicked by almost every real estate trainer.

Did you hear what he said? "Of course open houses work: almost any lead generation system works if you're great at it."

Did you hear what he didn't say? "Open houses are not used to actually sell the home where the open house is being held. They're used to generate more potential business for the agent." Generally speaking, that is exactly what is being taught by real estate trainers and managers everywhere. His words poorly characterize our industry.

My view is that, as a profession, we should not be deceptive, misleading or misrepresenting in our marketing and our actions. Sellers have an expectation - rightly so - that if we're holding an open house in their home, that we are actually trying to sell their home.

To me, open houses are meant to get a home sold and aren't for the purpose of collecting future clients. But sometimes it happens. If the open house attendee isn't the one to buy the home, they likely know someone who could be interested -- if they knew about the home for sale. Creating some excitement about a home and positive word-of-mouth is the agent's primary goal.

Over the last few years, potential buyers are demanding a much more active part in their own home search. One of the ways is by visiting open houses eventhough they are already under contract to work with another agent. Dismissing them at an open house because they are "already working with an agent" is a mistake in my view. Based on successful sales, it's actually more likely to sell a home to a buyer that came through the open house but is working with another agent than to find a buyer that is willing to be unrepresented and buy a home through (or at) an open house.
 
Not all real estates agents are the same — I can guarantee it! Choose your representative wisely.

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