Questions About Today’s Real Estate?

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Ask Phyllis!


The Importance Of Open Houses



Phyllis HARB 2012 WEB

Phyllis Harb is a Realtor® with Prudential California Realty.
She may be contacted at (818) 790-7325 or by email
Please visit


Dear Phyllis,


My husband and I will be moving the beginning of the year. As we have a lot of nosey neighbors and don’t want them in our home we have informed our Realtor® that we don’t want open houses.



Our Realtor® wants to have a broker’s open house and, while we don’t have an issue with that, we want to be sure only broker’s come (no buyers, no lookiloos).



Over the years, I have read that open houses only help the agent holding it by getting them more clients. Although our Realtor® disagrees and says open houses are a critical part of our marketing plan, he will go along with our wishes.



What is your opinion of open houses?


~ Ani


Dear Ani,

   Years ago open houses seldom sold homes, but since the advent of the internet, all of that has changed. Buyers are constantly searching popular real estate websites such as and often learn of new listings and price reductions sooner than their Realtor (who spends a lot of time out of the office and not in front of the computer). Buyers typically  take the next step and view the home on their own during an open house; if they like it, they can contact their agent to write an offer.

While open houses can be part of the buyer’s educational process, it can also bring your buyer right to the front door.  When you want to sell your home in the shortest period of time and for the highest price, making your home available for showings (especially set open house hours) is your best bet.

   As far as neighbors, I think they are an asset to open houses, typically they come and talk up the neighborhood and other neighbors (not a bad thing with a house full of potential buyers).  Also during an open house, the more the merrier; the more people in your home milling around, the safer your home and possessions are.

Regarding the broker’s open house (caravan), I don’t think your agent should act as the front door security guard quizzing everyone who visits. Is it really so bad that a potential buyer walk in the door?  Or perhaps a neighbor who is hoping their son/daughter can buy in your neighborhood? Far worse for your agent to be a security guard at the door than watching and selling your home’s features.

Your Realtor® works daily on listing and selling homes and I suggest that you follow his  advice.

Best of luck to you on your home sale.

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