Stranger danger is taught in schools every day yet we still host open houses every day as well.
Is it smart to open your private home to complete strangers?
Robbery, assault, or staking out a house to return later are risks of an open house yet agents and sellers continue to put themselves in harm’s way.
Back during the “old days” of real estate, in the 1980’s and early 1990’s, open houses were one of the common ways to see homes. Listings were not available to view on the internet, so seeing them in person was the only way to rule them in or out.
During this pre-internet time, buyers had to come into the real estate office and sit down with their agent to view the sought after “listing book”, choosing homes to see based on only one small black and white photo and a few lines of text. So open houses flourished in the “old days” of real estate. If you don’t know what a phone book or a listing book is, you probably were born in the 1980’s or later.
In the 1990’s the first listings were put on the internet and things haven’t been the same since. Virtually all homes are online and syndicated to hundreds of search sites now, with multiple photos and extensive information and mapping available.
A Virtual Open House Is Safer
The internet is essentially a 24/7 open house, so buyers can see hundreds or thousands of homes before narrowing it down and seeing their final choices in person. This technology based screening allows a more extensive search for the buyer, plus it is safer for sellers and agents.
The dinosaur days of open houses are gone, replaced by the Jetsons virtual open house.