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Hosting a Virtual Open House

Posted by Molly Wolchansky | Dec 01, 2020

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The current Covid-19 pandemic has created many challenges across the world. It’s important to consider the health and well-being of others in every way we now interact with the public. We have no recourse but to find other ways to do things, including how we hold open houses. Many homeowners many do not want to have showings or open houses, and we must be respectful of this decision. Holding these virtually is a great way to get around showcasing the inside of a home looks without risking anyone’s health or safety. Implementing these new online practices can set you apart from the competition.

If the homeowners do not want you to hold an open house in person, you will need to set up a time with them to record a video and take some photos for your virtual open house. All you need is some basic equipment to create a high-quality video that will stand out.

What You’ll Need

· Smart phone

· Gimbal stabilizer

· Lapel microphone

Tips for a Great Video

· Remove the case from your phone for the gimbal to work properly

· Start at the front door, so viewers can get a sense of what it feels like to step inside the home

· Pan slowly from side to side of each room, so viewers don’t get dizzy and can take in some detail

· Continue to walk slowly from room to room to help you capture smooth transitions

· Don’t talk too much; use soft music between your intro and outro to prevent fluffing or legal issues from saying the wrong things

Once you have your pictures, flyers, and pre-recorded video all set, you can position these files in a folder on your desktop for easy access during the virtual open house. You can either use Facebook Live or Zoom as popular options that are user-friendly for potential buyers. This way you can also capture their contact information for future communications (be sure to register in the settings beforehand on Zoom to do so). If using Facebook Live, you can ask users to comment any questions they may have that you can address during the open house. Use the features to share your screen to show pictures, flyers, and videos of the home.

If the homeowner allows you to be present during the open house period, you can preschedule “walk-throughs” on the hour of every hour. This lets viewers know exactly when to tune in, so you don’t have to continue walking through the home for hours on end. Also, viewers won’t be as likely to miss out on portions of the walkthrough. Even though you can use this method of virtual showing to give buyers a clear view of the house, they will likely still want to see the house in person before making a firm offer. If the homeowner gives you the okay, set a time allows them to thoroughly sanitize the home beforehand. Make shoe coverings, gloves, and masks available to buyers wherever available to help stop the spread of illnesses.

During this time, remember to be patient with your homeowners and potential buyers. It can be a scary and confusing time for anyone, and the thought of buying or selling during a global pandemic is even more stressful. Take all the precautions and legal requirements to heart when creating content for your virtual open houses. Be sure to add your pictures and videos to MLS where allowed or leave a link when you can.