COVID-19 has changed the landscape of buying and selling homes. In San Diego, real estate agents and home sellers are now required to host virtual open houses instead of in-person ones.
Currently, virtual open houses are a safe and effective way to show and sell your home. If you’re new to home selling, hosting an open house can feel intimidating. And hosting a virtual open house comes with its own challenges.
Luckily, we’ve compiled a list of helpful tips from an experienced San Diego real estate agent to make your virtual open house a complete success.
With great lighting, home organization, attention to detail, practice, and more, you’ll have a seamless open house that helps you achieve your goal: selling your home! And if you haven’t checked out our article on How To Stage Your Home For a Virtual Open House, we offer lots of great resources there too!
Read on for a complete guide on how to host the ultimate online virtual open house.
What Is a Virtual Open House?
A virtual open house is an open house done via a video streaming platform. Sometimes this means taking a detailed video tour of your property and posting it online. But often, virtual open houses are hosted live!
This means interested buyers will be watching you live stream a tour of your home. This can be daunting, especially if you don’t have a lot of experience with filming video. Your home might look great in person, but if you aren’t able to capture that on video, you’ll lose the interest of a lot of prospective buyers.
A lot goes into making a property look good for a viewing, and this is doubly true when it comes to a virtual one. Mike Myers is here to help. As a San Diego real estate agent, Mike assists with all aspects of your home sale and virtual open house, including setting up your home, staging, and filming!
But before you get to the big event, you’ll need to prepare your home and your digital streaming platform.
1. Choose a Video Hosting Platform
One of the biggest challenges of virtual open houses is the technological challenges. You’ve probably come to grips with Zoom over the past year, but there are a lot of other great video hosting platforms out there you might opt for for a virtual open house.
It’s important you choose the right platform to host your viewing, to maximize your potential audience. You want to choose something with high-quality video streaming that’s also easily accessible to potential buyers, i.e., a platform that doesn’t require a lot of downloads or bandwidth.
Before choosing your video hosting service, you need to decide whether you want to host a live virtual viewing, a recorded one, or both. There are advantages to each option.
With prerecorded viewings, you can edit your videos, re-record pieces where things went wrong, and edit the lighting and other aesthetics in post-production. With a live video, you don’t get the chance to do this, but it’s more interactive, and viewers have time to ask you questions as you go. In this way, it’s more like a traditional viewing.
For live videos, Zoom, Facebook, and Periscope are your best options. Especially if your real estate agent has a large Facebook following, a live video on Facebook is a great idea. For prerecorded viewings, YouTube, Vimeo, or again Facebook all work well.
2. Advertise on Social Media
Speaking of Facebook, social media platforms are a great way to alert potential buyers to the fact that you’ve got a property they might be interested in.
One positive that has come out of the rise of virtual open houses is that it enables people from anywhere in the country to check out your listing. Hundreds of people can now attend online open houses, which can only be good for business.
Remember: don’t just stick to Facebook. Posting your video on as many platforms as possible will show you the most success and get the widest reach. This way, as many potential buyers as possible, will see your listing, even if they’re in another state!
Make sure to utilize relevant hashtags, geolocations, and, if you like, paid advertising techniques to get the word out even further. Discuss all these tactics with your real estate agent for the most success.
3. Test Your Internet Connection
Now you’ve chosen your video platform, you need to think about the technical details. This will ensure your virtual viewing goes off without a hitch on the day you film.
One of the most important steps you should take when setting up your virtual open house is to test your internet connection. This is especially important if you’re planning on doing a live virtual viewing. But even for a recorded video, a low internet connection will lower the quality of your video, making it less attractive to buyers.
In a live stream, the last thing you want is to lose your connection—and your viewers—halfway through the tour. A crystal clear and high-speed connection will give you the highest resolution for your video.
Test your connection by using the video platform of your choice, and use one of the many free websites, like SpeedTest, to check your internet speed.
You also don’t want a video that is grainy or low quality. You need a high-res recording with a crystal clear connection.
4. Practice Your Tour
Before you give the tour, you should do at least one test run on camera. This will ensure you know what route you’re going to take through your house and what you’re going to say in each room.
Before you start your video, turn on any lights and open any doors ahead of the recording, so you’re not fiddling with door knobs and switches while on camera.
This will also help you practice using the streaming platform of your choice. It’s a good idea to have someone watch this practice test online, so they see what your potential buyers will be seeing. This will help you spot anything out of place or any issues that need to be addressed before the real virtual open house.
Or you can record your video and watch it back to identify any mistakes. You may want to practice this a few times to make sure you are showing your home to its utmost potential.
5. Be Friendly and Welcoming
You’re now ready to record your open house. To make your video as appealing as possible, try to be welcoming as if you were actually inviting people into your home.
Introduce yourself at the beginning, and try to talk as naturally as possible throughout the tour. Begin your video outside the property, and make sure to show any outside space in detail.
At the end of the tour, don’t forget to sign off, leaving your details. If you are live streaming, always leave lots of time for questions and comments. Be prepared to answer questions about each room in the house and all appliances and recent repairs.
It’s always better to be over-prepared than under-prepared, so think about any questions you might ask if you were buying a home and be ready to answer them. Your real estate agent can help you with this as well.
Virtual Open Houses Made Easy
There’s a lot that goes into hosting a virtual open house. From honing your videographer skills to advertising to streaming and answering questions, it’s a big job!
Luckily, Mike Myers is here to help. Mike Myers works with you every step of the way through the entire home selling process. From advertising to setting up to streaming, Mike is there to make the whole process easy, smooth, and successful.
Mike is passionate about real estate, has years of experience working in the San Diego market, and is dedicated to helping clients achieve and surpass their goals.
Enthusiasm, reliability, loyalty, and fairness are the core values of Mike’s business, and he’s dedicated to ensuring his clients’ complete satisfaction with every detail of your home sale. Contact Mike today and let him help you find an amazing offer for your home.