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Open Houses Defended as Valuable Sales

November 11, 1990

I read "Open Houses May Be Waste of Time" (by Ellen L. James, oct. 28) with great dismay.

More than 12 years ago I began selling real estate for Fred Sands Realtors. I was advised by many people that Sunday open houses weren't worthwhile. I heard, "Do everything you can to get out of doing open houses. Convince the sellers it's just a waste of time."

Initially, I heeded their advice. I then had an exerpience for which I am very thankful. I listed a home in Beverly Hills. On a Sunday afternoon I saw the owner's brother at a local restaurant. He asked why I as not holding his siter's house open. I told him, "Open houses are a waste of time." He said he had recently purchased his home after seeing it at a Sunday open house.

That evening his sister called me to request that I hold her home open on Sundays. I reluctantly agreed, and a few weeks latewr the house was sold thorugh a Sunday open house. After that, I held homes open every Sunday. That same year I sold my own home to a couple who saw it at a Sunday open house.

I never insist that my sellers have open houses. If they prefer not to, it is their choce. I try to use every tool available to sell the properties I represent. Sunday open houses make the sale in at leat 10% of my listings.

Open houses are only a waste of time if your home is overpriced. When your property is priced competitively, a Sunday open house can only increase your chances of selling.

CLAUDIA DEKOVEN, Brentwood

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