Clients often ask what they can do to secure their belongings when hosting an open house. While many agree the probability of theft is low and outweighed by the potential exposure of open houses, there are some things homeowners can do to be proactive and safeguard their valuable possessions.

Benefits of Open Houses

First, remember there are real benefits to this marketing opportunity. When sellers hold an open house, they increase the foot traffic through the home exposing it to more potential buyers. While buyers can make an appointment with their real estate agent to see a house, no appointment is necessary with open houses.

Another advantage of holding an open house is that it reaches buyers driving through neighborhoods of interest and gets them inside the door.

Some real estate agents turn open houses into an event, which helps buyers get a feel for what it might be like to live, and entertain, in the home. One example is Keller Williams associate Jason Berns and The Berns Team, who have changed the game by focusing on “creating the magic” for their clients. They call it the 10 Day Blitz.

Securing the Home

Back to the safety front, below are some tips to help secure the home during an open house.

Lock or hide small valuables such as:

  • Jewelry
  • Small electronic devices such as smartphones, laptops, tablets
  • Prescriptions
  • Checkbooks, bills, bank statements, passports, ID cards – anything with personal information
  • Heirlooms, irreplaceable and/or valuable possessions
  • Extra keys

Tips for added safety:

  • Consider self-installing home security cameras.
  • If the home is multi-leveled, consider assigning someone to each floor.
  • Pets should not be present during open houses.

While the concern of theft shouldn’t be the main thought on open house day, it doesn’t hurt to do one's due diligence. These are just a few ways to help homeowners feel more comfortable about their upcoming event.