- Plan out your route in advance. Click here for updated open houses in Toronto.
- Open houses don’t just happen on Sundays, there are plenty on Saturdays too. While most open houses in Toronto happen from 2-4, there are some from 12-2, 4-5, and everything in between. The busiest time at an open house is right before it ends, so if you’re looking to avoid crowds, aim for the beginning of the open house.
- Wear slip on/slip off shoes. You’ll be taking your shoes on and off multiple times, and it’s a pain to lace up your shoes repeatedly. Don’t forget to wear socks (you never know how clean that house is going to be).
- You’ll more than likely be asked to sign at the open house – and agents know the fake name/fake email address/unreadable hand-writing tricks. If you don’t want to be contacted by the agent, just say so. The sign-in request is for security and informational purposes for the Seller – it’s not permission for agents to spam and harass you. That said, make it clear if you don’t want them to contact you, because unfortunately, some agents feel open houses are about identifying buyers for themselves rather than selling the house they’re in.
- If you’re working with an agent, be upfront about it. If the house ends up getting a Saturday night offer, the listing agent will be able to contact your REALTOR before the Sellers accept another offer. It’s never fun when a house you’re interested in gets sold out from under you. Plus if you confess to working with an agent, you’re less likely to get harassed by the open house agent.
- If you’re a curious neighbour, that’s OK too. You don’t have to pretend that you have a friend interested in the house, and you don’t have to pretend that you’re in the market if you aren’t. Agents know that neighbours attend open houses -there’s nothing to be embarrassed about.
- Take notes! If you’re hitting multiple open houses, you’ll likely forget most of what you saw by the end of the day. Pull out your smartphone and write down the important stuff.
- Ask plenty of questions. Open houses are hosted by the agent who has listed the property, so they should be able to answer your most random questions, from how old the roof is to how much was spent on that recent kitchen renovation.
- If you’re not really “into” the house, leave the pretty feature sheet behind. Feature sheets are expensive and the lives of trees are at stake. Do you really want the pointless death of a tree on your conscience? It’s totally OK to take a feature sheet while you tour the home and return it before you leave. Thank you.
- Don’t forget that your agent can take you to a private showing of a home at any time, so if the house you are interested in doesn’t have an open house or the timing doesn’t work, give your agent a call. Showing homes is a big part of our jobs.
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