Holiday Open House

Posted by: Joseph Ferrara on December 21st, 2009

Here’s my recipe for a Holiday Open House.  The goal is to celebrate the season in a warm, inviting home.  The holidays give a perfect opportunity to showcase a home.


Invite the neighbors, as well as those folks who are looking for a new home.  You can reach prospective buyers by inviting agents you know who regularly represent buyers.  The invitations should mimic a Holiday card.  The Open House signs on the street should also be festive.  Unlike other Open Houses, have the homeowners in attendance.

Home Decor

Decorate the home with traditional holiday trimmings.  A Christmas tree adorned with beautiful ornaments and flickering lights makes an inviting focal point.  Place wreaths in the windows and on the doors.  Remove furniture to make the space larger.

A crackling fire (if there is a fireplace) gives off a romantic glow and creates a peaceful ambiance.  I’ve use color crystal color sticks and pine cones, which turn the flames green, red and blue– a wow factor.

Curb Appeal

Use flood lights to create dramatic effects.  Point them to the front door and other outdoor walls.  Uplight any trees nearby.  Or you can just have an electric candlelight in each window.  Stick with classic white lights– you don’t want the Coney Island effect with colored lights. Don’t go crazy with the blow up Grinch and Santa Sleigh.


Bake a batch of sugar cookies to fill the air with a sweet aroma.  If you use a real Christmas tree and wreaths, they will release a soothing pine scent in the air.

Good Cheer

Play classic Christmas carols to fill the home with good cheer. Maybe you can have children from the choir come over to sing in person—another wow factor.  Offer guests a large bowl of fruit punch, or eggnog, to go with the sugar cookies.  Mistletoe is my personal favorite good cheer instigator.


Don’t forget the big man, Santa (the real estate agent?), to hear the requests of the children (or grownups).  He can also bellow a few Ho-Ho-Hopen-Houses. Hang some fun ornaments on the Christmas tree.  I suggest the buyer tax credit ornaments, along with current interest rates and the home warranty.

Take photographs of the kids, and the event, and collect email addresses to send them and open a communication line.  If you use social media, put the Open House photos on your blog.  Make sure you get the consent of the folks you photograph— send them the link, so they’ll know you have a blog and are really an expert, besides being a jolly fellow.

Have you ever hosted a holiday open house?



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