REAL ESTATE: Warmer Weather Welcomes Favorite Activity

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By Michelle Gillespie
The warm spring weather has reawakened real estate's favorite Sunday activity: the grand tradition of holding an open house. The open house is a classic way to introduce a property to the market, and it is still quite an effective and popular method to attract buyers. It is also a convenient way for buyers to check out many properties in an area with no pressure.

Tips for Home Sellers

To ensure that your open house event is successful, make sure to cover the basics:

  • For the interior of the home, de-clutter and remove personal belongings. Buyers want to imagine their own belongings in the space and too much artwork, knickknacks, and other items can distract them. Make sure that personal items such as jewelry and medication are locked safely away. Neutralize strong odors and let the light shine through. Raise the blinds, open curtains, and wash the windows.
  • The outside of the home should be as appealing as possible. Water and mow the lawn, trim the trees, and plant colorful flowers. Store bicycles, gardening equipment, and toys away from view.

Your neighbors can be a very important sales tool for your home. These “selling ambassadors” want their friends to move to the neighborhood, so they make great advocates. At two of my recent open houses – 42 Catherine Drive in Northborough and 56 Pleasant Street in Northborough – neighbors visited the open house, scouting it for their friends moving into the area. Because neighbors can be such an asset, before every open house I send out postcards and make calls around the neighborhood, inviting the neighbors for a preview.

Another key tool I use to increase foot traffic at your open house is signage. Sign riders let buyers know when to come back for an open house. And for the open house, I provide open house signs at major streets nearby, clearly directing potential buyers to the property.

Tips for Home Buyers

Open houses are just as important for home buyers as they are for sellers, because as a prospective buyer, you can assess and compare a large number of properties at once. Touring a variety of homes can give you a much better idea of exactly what you want in a property, and can help you understand how much home you can afford.

If you don's have time to attend an open house, visit my popular website, www.michellegillespie.com. With thousands of listings featuring at-a-glance details of property listings with multiple views, selecting the right home is a simple click away. You can search for your dream home by location, MLS number, property type and more.

You can also sign up for e-mail alerts to notify you when new properties come on the market, when prices change and when open houses are scheduled.

Happy House Hunting!

If you want to learn more about the open house process, whether you are a seller ready to plan an open house or a buyer ready to begin your new home “hunt,” call me, Michelle Gillespie, at 1-508-934-9818 or e-mail [email protected].

Coming Up

Next month, I'sl talk about pricing your home for sale. As your realtor, I can provide an analysis of your home based on the current market, so that we can decide on the best price for your home.