Come on In, It’s Open!
Today is the day! It’s been a few weeks since you made the decision to sell your home. You did your research and found the perfect Realtor®. You listened to their advice and have worked diligently to sharpen your home’s curb appeal. You’ve spent time to fix up, clean up, clean out and stage the home to appeal to the most discerning buyers. And finally, you’ve thoughtfully worked with your Realtor® to determine a listing price that will get your home sold in the shortest time possible for the greatest amount possible. Now it’s time to bring in the buyers!
Drive around any town on any given day and you will inevitably see a temporary sign on a corner with an arrow pointing you towards an “Open House”. Holding a house open, especially for a newly listed home, is a great way to provide exposure to a larger group of people in just a few hours. This brings in a few different groups of people. There are those who are actively looking for a home and desire to live in your neighborhood. There are others in your neighborhood who want to see the inside of your home out of curiosity which is okay because they, oftentimes, have friends they would like to turn into neighbors.
Unfortunately, on occasion, there are those looking for an opportunity to take advantage of you opening your home to the public. Let’s talk about how you can prevent un-welcomed guest issues by taking a few steps before you open your doors.
Be proactive in protecting yourself by removing and securing items that are often targeted by dishonest visitors looking for an easy opportunity. A Realtor® (and many times more than one agent!) will be in your home throughout the duration of the open house, however, when multiple visitors are present simultaneously, it is not an easy task to accompany them throughout the house. By taking a few precautions, you can reduce your risks of becoming a victim.
Here are five of the most common personal items to safeguard when preparing for your open house:
Prescription medications – Remove all prescription medications from your kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Be sure to include the ones by your bedside tables.
Jewelry – This one may seem obvious, but be thoughtful as you take inventory of the articles of jewelry you have in your house. Even items that may not have great monetary value can still hold significant sentimental value.
Small electronics – In today’s technologically connected world, it is not unusual for a family to have multiple electronic gadgets throughout the home. Consider the additional cell phones, tablets and cameras that may be in various rooms of a home.
Identity documents – More than likely, you have a central location where you place your monthly bills as they come in the mail. You may also have various credit cards you don’t carry on a day to day basis. Bank statements and medical bills also need to be put away. These are items that someone doesn’t even have to take with them. They can quickly snap a photo use it later to steal your identity.
Extra keys and remotes – Walk in the door from most garages and you will find hanging on a hook the extra set of car keys, remotes for the vehicles and sometimes the extra house keys.
The commonality of all the items above is that they are relatively small and can fit in a pocket or purse. The good news is they can also all fit into a small safe! A personal safe for your belongings is relatively inexpensive and can be found at many hardware or office supply store. Place the safe in a location that is out of sight and keep these items in there throughout the duration of your house being on the market. By taking a few precautions you can have the peace of mind your
Open House is being used for what you planned: The perfect buyer who will make you an offer you can’t resist!