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Everything You Know About Open Houses Is About to Change

May 27 2020

From its invention more than 100 years ago and until recent events, the open house has remained much the same. While agents rushed to provide virtual showings to fill the immediate void, "open houses" are starting to return, but they are not the same.

voicepad ohedIn fact, everything you know about open houses is about to change again with an innovative new service: Open House Every Day.

Randall Standard, CEO of VoicePad, who parlayed nearly 20 years of experience in the wireless industry into the creation of the VoicePad platform, has applied his penchant for innovation to creating a new kind of open house.

Open House Every Day is safer for sellers and one that buyers can schedule from the curb. And it asks this basic question: Why wait until Sunday?

And while Standard admits he didn't invent the concept of holding an open house every day of the week, the new out-of-the-box service he is offering real estate agents is innovation and iteration at its finest. The result is a solution tailored to our times that can help agents and teams win more listings.

How it works

Open House Every Day is driven by the same well-proven call-to-action process that VoicePad has perfected for its core platform. Standard notes that for all real estate tech, great ideas are defined by the processes behind them.

"Good processes always make their way to the bottom line," he says. "Open House Every Day has taken a good call-to-action message and improved it with an exceptional process."

Like all traditional open houses, it begins with the yard sign, which is amplified in online listings and social media posts. VoicePad provides an agent with a custom, text-enabled phone number for the agent's Open House Every Day yard sign or yard sign hanger.

When a potential home buyer calls the phone number on the sign, up to 10 agents' mobile phones will "ring" simultaneously. This assures that someone is available to take a call. The first available agent to answer the phone gets introduced to the potential buyer. Agents called are limited only to those the listing agents know and trust to show the listing.

When an agent's phone rings, they immediately know it's an open house lead calling about scheduling a showing — so the call gets answered. The system delivers the potential buyer's contact details to the agent who was first to accept the call. The system also automatically assigns the caller to the agent in the system's CRM. The Open House Every Day mobile platform allows the agent to schedule the appointment instantly with the buyer, offering available times that are pre-determined by the agent and the seller.

The dealmaker feature

The Open House Every Day yard sign has a dealmaker feature: an auto-scheduler via text. With millennials comprising a growing share of home buyers, this text feature stands apart in the Open House Every Day offerings. The mobile web schedule interface is attractive, intuitive, and very easy to use.

A potential buyer texts the keyword "Open" to the agent's Open House Every Day number. The buyer gets a return text with available showing times. The location of the request is geo-located, so an agent can see where the showing request was initiated.

Listing agents control appointment availability as well as the last appointment time of the day, all from their mobile phone. Potential buyers are prompted for additional information (best phone number, name, and email address) to complete the scheduled request. This information is collected and added to the appointment request notification.

It just might be the safest open house ever

An additional — and essential — benefit to agents using Open House Every Day is the enhanced level of security and safe viewing that it provides. Because of how the process is designed, an agent or team can limit the number of people visiting the home to one client at a time.

Safety is increased as agents can vet potential buyer candidates before they enter their client's home. The automatically captured contact information can run through agent safety systems, ensuring the protection of everyone involved.

Open House Every Day can also optionally be set up to record agent-client phone conversations automatically. The voice prompt alone is likely to deter someone with evil intentions: It notes, "This call is being recorded for safety and training purposes."

Consumer-focused

Open House Every Day addresses the elephant in the room when it comes to the "why" when buying any real estate technology: It makes home buying and selling easier for consumers.

"Agents and teams suffer from tech fatigue," Standard says. "But agents and teams still desperately want technology that significantly improves the consumer experience while keeping more income 'in-house.' It's also an excellent way to generate additional referral income from agents who show your listing."

Agents can win more listings

Open House Every Day is available at a flat rate of $39 a month. That makes its benefits-to-investment ratio remarkably attractive. Agents can offer a better open house for sellers as it maximizes the exposure of their home. It's better for agents because it eliminates wasted time that comes with house-sitting.

Agents can win more listings by offering sellers what nobody else will: "an open house every day."

Agents receive the best leads as the system is designed to capture ready-to act-home buyers. The auto text feature gives consumers — and especially millennials — what they want, when they want it. Plus, that text feature captures contact details automatically and delivers it to the agent's CRM.

And Open House Every Day follows the rules of real estate. It can filter out buyers who are represented by another agent — because friends don't hand out buyer leads when they already are working with another agent. Open House Every Day asks the caller if they are an agent or represented by an agent.

With Open House Every Day from VoicePad, leads can be answered in real-time, helping customers avoid what they dread most: voicemail. With Open House Every Day's "simul-ring" technology, buyers' calls are answered by an agent, which is what buyers want.

Standard says early adopters have found another way to leverage Open House Every Day by using it on existing listings that are not selling. "It's a great way to avoid a conversation about a price reduction, refreshing an otherwise stale listing." This can be the go-to option when an agent's digital strategy fails.

Open House Every Day is today's way to hold an open house: it's better and safer than ever. The days of sitting an open house while juggling groups of prospects touring all at once apparently are gone, but most agents will tell you that's a good thing.