Industry Partners

How to Make Your Open House Stand Out

December 17, 2019

This is a guest blog post from Kate McGuffie of the Tom Lipinski Team at Keller Williams Lakeside Realty.

Holding an open house is one of the most tried-and-true ways to get your home sold. However, sellers are finding it increasingly hard to make their open house memorable enough for offers to materialize, as homebuyers often see several dozen properties over the span of their search.

In order to make your home stand out, it’s important to make a remarkable impression on the buyers that walk through it as well as the buyers viewing your home online. In fact, your home’s Online Presence will paint a picture of your home and your own motivation to sell.

Here are a few ideas to make your open house stand out from the rest.

Take Great Photos 

Before you make your open house stand out, you have to motivate homebuyers to come through the door in the first place. Wherever you’re listing the event, it’s vital that photos of your home evoke the right first impression—one that makes your property inviting and enticing enough to make the trip to see it.

When taking photos of the home, make sure each room is clean, bright and—if possible—reflective of current trends in interior design. While the homebuyer won’t be getting your furniture, the idea of what could be in their potential new home will help leave a lasting first impression and prompt them to attend your open house.

Capture the Senses 

In setting up an open house, you want to ensure homebuyers have a positive perception of the space within the first few seconds of entering. This can be done by activating one or more of the senses to help make the home stand out. Some ideas include:

  • Music is a great way to set the mood and shape the atmosphere of a room. But this isn’t the time to break out the heavy metal—the more ambient and generic, the better.
  • If you really want your open house to stick, fill it with inviting scents and aromas through things like candles, fresh-baked cookies and air fresheners. This helps buyers remember your listing and evoke a more emotional connection.
  • While they do smell good, fresh-baked cookies taste even better. Making this and other food and drink available during your open house will leave homebuyers with a more positive impression.
  • Nobody wants to tour a house that looks lived-in. Make sure your home is extra clean, tidy and bare as possible. Unless the furniture is trendy and stylish, you want to give homebuyers as big a blank canvas as possible, so they can envision how they would furnish the home if it were theirs.

Be a Storyteller

Storytelling is of the best ways to captivate people, make them feel an emotional connection and create a particular perception. This can be done during the open house and in listing descriptions to add standout elements and attributes to the property.

Perhaps your home has certain architectural details or historic qualities that are unique, or was once owned by a well-known celebrity—these anecdotes should be included when talking about the house to give it that extra sense of remarkableness, and encourage homebuyers to remember it when deciding who to send an offer to.

Make Updates 

Your house might have issues that make it seem unappealing or dated to a homebuyer. Before your open house, consider putting a bit of money towards making updates to certain areas. Now is the time to do all of the maintenance projects on your list. It’s also the time to repaint interior walls, as this is a surefire way to make your home pop during an open house.

Other updates you can make to your home include replacing worn or stained flooring, updating light fixtures, sprucing up your landscaping and patching any holes or cracks in the walls. These improvements can have a huge impact on perception and make homebuyers that much more enticed to make an offer.


Have your real estate agent invite at least 100 of your closest neighbors. Your neighbor may have a friend or relative that would love you home.

Put out at least 15 signs, 25 is better. More than anything, signs bring people in.

Advertise on the Realtor Multiple Listing Service, Facebook, Instagram and other portals.

If you’re a interested in learning more about the selling or buying a home, send us a message and a Ross Mortgage representative will provide you with the expert guidance you need.

This information was made available by:

Kate McGuffie
Buyer/Seller Specialist

Tom Lipinski Team at Keller Williams Lakeside
Mobile: 586-899-7769