The National Association of Realtors every year holds a “National Open House Weekend” and they spin it as an, “endeavor to promote the message to prospective buyers that homeownership matters.” See our most recent story on this by clicking here.  The one thing that they do not tell you is that Open Houses do not sell houses, they create leads for Realtors.  For sellers who vacate their homes every weekend, that is an expensive and highly disruptive deception.

CAARE does have an open house form that you could use which instructs the listing broker to share their commission with you, but you would need to get them to sign it.  If they do not sign it, flip it over and it is a letter to the seller explaining what happened.

Sellers, CANCEL your open houses.  Buyers, don’t EVER walk into an open house or set up an appointment with the agent listing the house. 

Our data comes from Realtors themselves.  Most surveyed Realtors agree that open houses do not sell houses, that they are a security risk to sellers, that they attract buyers who have little interest in buying the showcased house and that open houses serve to generate business for Realtors, not their clients.  Yet nearly 97% of those same Realtors regularly subject their clients to open houses….

Buyers who sign in to an open house or call on a listing agent’s ad are unwittingly forfeiting their right to representation and guaranteeing that the seller’s agent will receive a double commission (they pocket the amount intended for the buyer’s agent).  In that situation the seller also loses his right to advice from his Realtor on negotiating price and terms.  Open houses and online ads lead to a relationship called dual agency where the buyer and seller lose all their representation and the agent gets to keep both parts of the commission (they actually call this a “hogger”).   For buyers and sellers it goes by another name: “bait and switch.”