Many agents struggle to come up with open house ideas. We get it — it’s a daunting task. But don’t worry, you’re in the right place. Our favorite out-of-the-box ideas will help you stand out from the competition.
10 Unique Open House Ideas
As a real estate agent, you know that open houses often do a great job of attracting people, but not always serious prospective buyers. Unfortunately, the traditional open house is losing its luster.
If you still think wine and cheese are the best ways to draw people in to check out a new listing, you’re missing out on some unique open house ideas that revitalize this real estate lead generation method.
By thinking outside the box, you can drive lots of interest with your next open house. And with the right follow-up, you’ll collect plenty of contact information to make it worth your time.
We at REthority are a creative bunch, and put our heads together to come up with some cool open house ideas to help you stand out. Read on to see our top 10 methods.
Try any of these unique open house ideas to attract serious buyers, spread the word about your new listing, and help prospective homebuyers get excited about moving in.
1. Bring in a Food Truck
Bringing in a food truck can be a great way to get a local small business involved while pleasing the crowd. If there’s a popular food truck in your area, track them down and hire them for the open house.
You can give visitors a coupon for a free food item or meal once they sign in for the open house. The food truck will park outside the house.
So the food truck owner has the added benefit of selling their fare to any passerby who wanders up to see where the delicious smell is coming from. It’s a win-win!
2. Offer Pop-Up Shopping
Pop-up shopping is a unique open house idea that can appeal to any prospective homebuyer. You might contact local boutiques, specialty stores, authors, or eateries to set up booths inside or outside the home.
Inside the home, you can have a different vendor in every large room, giving visitors a good reason to make their way through the entire house.
Of course, the downside is that it’s difficult for serious buyers to see the home as it really is. You can always have pop-up shopping set up outside to avoid this problem.
Setting up outside has the added benefit of attracting people who are walking or driving by. After all, people love stopping by unexpected shops to look for bargains.
3. Turn the Home Into a Local Art Gallery
Speaking of pop-up shopping, how about hosting a pop-up art show for your next open house? Find several local artists with different mediums – paint, stone, ceramics, pottery, etc. – to ensure there’s something for everyone.
You can count on the artists to spread the word with their friends and family for added publicity. You might be able to get local news coverage of the event as well! There are a few ways you can approach the pop-up art show for an open house.
You might display the artwork throughout the home, labeled with the artist’s name and price. You could also allow artists to set up booths to scatter interest throughout the home and keep people moving through.
4. Post a Virtual Tour
One of the downsides to holding an open house is that not everyone is available to attend at the scheduled time. You can make sure anyone with interest can have a virtual tour of the house by posting it on your social media pages.
Don’t just create a slideshow with pictures that prospective buyers can already find online. Post a 3D walkthrough of the house, showing buyers how the home looks as you enter and walk through it.
Not only can you capture the attention of interested prospects who couldn’t make it to the open house, but you’ll also give the people that did attend a way to look back at the house and keep it top of mind.
5. Go Live
Facebook Live can be a real asset to your next open house. Once the event is in full swing, grab your phone and go live to show anyone who didn’t make it what they’re missing!
Start outside the home and walk-in, showing the home as you would to a prospective buyer and noting the best features. Ensure the lighting is good and that guests don’t mind if they’re briefly in the video before you go live.
Highlight some of the fun things going on, show the number of interested people and look around the house, and talk about any freebies or bonuses you’re giving to visitors. Encourage viewers to stop by and see the home for themselves.
6. Offer Incentives for Buyers
We love any chance to partner up with a local business. Offering coupons and incentives from local businesses is a great way to build interest in your listing, show locals that you’re dedicated to the community, and encourage potential buyers to take the next step.
Examples of local businesses you can partner with are:
- Landscaping and lawn care: Offer the first mow free for the buyer
- Housekeeping and organization: Offer a free organizing session or cleaning for the buyer
- HVAC or energy efficiency: Offer a free A/C tune-up or home energy efficiency inspection for the buyer
- Pool maintenance: If the home has a pool, offer a discount on maintenance services or a free first cleaning
- Moving professionals: Offer a discount on moving services or U-Haul rental for the buyer
By helping set the next homeowner up with all the services they will need during and after moving in, you remove a barrier to entry.
You also help prospects think of buying as a more convenient process. At the same time, you help local businesses make connections with more people in the community.
7. Hold a Raffle or Contest
Bring out the competitive nature of your open house guests by holding a raffle or a contest. The only requirement to enter? Their contact information!
You can get creative about contest and raffle prizes, and again, local businesses can be a great source of inspiration. The prize doesn’t have to be huge.
We’ve seen agents hold raffles for household items like kitchen utensils or appliances, gift cards, signed memorabilia from a local celebrity or athlete, and more.
Have everyone sign in for the open house, explain the contest’s rules or raffle, and then announce the winner after the contest. This allows you to follow up, and also makes the event more exciting.
8. Invite the Neighborhood
Neighbors can be an excellent resource for your next open house. By inviting the neighbors, you can have more people looking around the house, which can encourage interested buyers to act quickly.
They can also chat with interested buyers about the neighborhood, schools, shopping, and recreation activities nearby. Another benefit to inviting neighbors: They’re a great source of referrals.
Everyone knows someone with whom they’d like to be neighbors, and they’re likely to call them up and encourage them to attend the open house. Make sure you make an effort to let the neighbors know about the open house in advance.
You might walk the neighborhood with flyers and boxes of goodies to offer as you tell them about the event or to leave on their doorknob if they’re not around.
Post the open house in the newspaper, on social media, and in the clubhouse (with permission), if the neighborhood has one.
9. Offer Samples From Local Eateries
Involve local businesses without putting the focus on pop-up shopping or profits. There’s no need for you to spend your hard-earned money on provisions.
Instea, you can have a local bakery, candy store, produce shop, winery, coffee shop, or health food cafe agree to provide several free samples for open house guests to enjoy.
Everyone enjoys being able to wander around a beautiful home, sampling local treats and drinks! If you’re feeling generous, you might purchase something from each local eatery ahead of time to place in goody bags for your guests.
In return, the guests will be able to meet and talk with them at the open house, and you’ll place their company information on your open house marketing materials.
And once your guests are home, enjoying their treats or remembering the event, you and the home are sure to stay top of mind.
10. Give Your Open House a Theme
Themes make any party more fun! Think of a theme for your open house to build interest and help it stand out in prospective homebuyers’ minds.
Your open house theme might be related to a season, holiday, the home’s architectural style (like “Arts and Crafts”), one of the home’s best features, a culinary item you’ll be offering to guests, etc.
The more creative your theme is, the more it will stand out in your guests’ minds! Whatever your theme is, don’t go overboard with decorations.
Just make sure the refreshments fit the theme and model your promotional materials for the open house accordingly.
Ready to Host a Unique Open House?
Who said open houses have to be boring? Make your next open house one that visitors won’t forget by trying one of these ten unique open house ideas.
Whether you’re partnering with local businesses, turning a home into an art gallery, or giving people a live tour of the home, you can turn your next open house into a lead generating event that buyers will flock to.
Which unique open house idea will you try first? Be sure to write us and let us know if we’ve missed any of your favorite ways to attract buyers!