Though the mass vaccination efforts bring a glimmer of hope, experts warn that now is not the time to ease Covid-19 restrictions. This means at least a few more months of our modified lives.
Unfortunately, some things can’t wait for vaccine aided herd immunity. If you need to sell your house, you need to learn how to conduct a safe open house.
Can you even conduct an open house? Yes, you can. Check out this Covid-19 open house tip guide to keep you and your prospective buyers safe and healthy.
How to Have an Open House During Covid
You can strategize your staging to help sell your home, but you need to know how to safely conduct an open house during Covid.
When you begin the process of selling, you might wonder, “Can I have an open house during Covid?”
It depends on your state’s guidelines. Some state governments recommend that no unregistered home events occur. This means to show your house, a buyer must have an appointment with a listing agent.
If your state currently permits open houses, here are some guidelines to follow when conducting one.
Consider Virtual Open House
To ensure maximum safety, consider a virtual open house. With these, you can get all the great marketing opportunities without having anyone visit.
You can perform a virtual open house in conjunction with your real estate agent who’ll promote the event through their personal and professional social media platforms.
It could be you need to sell right away and don’t want to deal with Covid restrictions. If that’s the case, there are plenty of agencies that offer cash for homes.
Limit the Number of People
Traditional open houses allowed any number of people to walk through your door and tour your house. The CDC recommends limiting that number to 10 or less.
To ensure maximum safety, you and your real estate agent can advertise a modified, reserved open house. This helps limit walk-ups and any possible gathering and crowding outside your home.
Ensure Social Distancing
If you’ve dined in a restaurant or pay attention to the news, you know how important social distancing is. If you can, set up markers that guide people through your home to stay at least six feet apart.
One of the best ways to do this is to post arrows that guide people through your home in one direction. Like grocery store aisles, one-way paths prevent mingling and help enforce social distancing.
Make sure everyone who walks through your door wears a mask with no exceptions. While you risk alienating some possible buyers, masks are a proven tool to help prevent the spread of Covid-19.
Sanitizing Stations and Timing
If you insist on conducting an in-person open house, set up stations in the house with hand sanitizer.
Stagger the groups of people in your home, too. Give yourself 30-45 minutes between showings for ventilation and sanitation.
Staging for an Open House
When it comes to having an open house during Covid, much of the work you do to prepare remains the same. You want to make your home as appealing as possible to any buyers.
This means staging. Home staging during Covid or any other time follows the same principles. You look to accentuate the unique features of your home’s most important rooms to attract the eye of possible buyers.
Before you invite people into your home via a physical or virtual open house, you and your real estate agent should collaborate on staging. Here are a few important staging tips.
Target the Right Areas
When it comes to staging your home for an open house, know that buyers focus on four key areas. These are the exterior, kitchen, living room, and master bedroom.
Why? The exterior is the first thing prospective buyers see, and first impressions are important. The kitchen, living room, and master bedroom are the rooms where people spend most of their time.
A home that’s clean and free from excess clutter has a better chance of selling. A filthy, cluttered house is unattractive to the buyer’s eye and downplays all the attractive features you want to show.
During the age of Covid, deep cleaning is even more important. If buyers don’t feel safe while touring your home, they’re less likely to buy.
Keep the Windows Open
A bright home full of natural light appeals to buyers. Dark rooms are depressing and don’t show your home in the best possible way. Make sure to have plenty of natural light shining through.
Open windows are even more important during a Covid-19 open house. You’re aware of how Covid-19 spreads rapidly in spaces with little ventilation. Open windows keep the air moving and everyone safe.
Bright colors and unique art pieces are a luxury of owning a home. You can decorate to your tastes. Staging a home to sell is different.
You need to give a possible buyer mental space to imagine the possibilities of their design aesthetic in your space. To do so, slap on a fresh coat of neutral-toned paint and remove any ostentatious art.
Open House Tip Guide for Covid-19 Safety
Covid-19 changed business. Selling your house is no different. While the strategies and marketing tools remain the same, the way you conduct these changed dramatically.
Conducting an open house during a pandemic means an extra focus on safety and well-being. You can do this with a virtual open house.
If you follow the state and federal guidelines along with this open house tip guide, you help mitigate the risks of an in-person open house as much as possible.
For more real estate tips, check out the rest of our business section.