The Ambiance of an Open House

February 14, 2019

Creating the perfect ambiance can make or break an open house. Potential buyers want to be able to picture themselves living in the space you are showing off, so pay attention to the tiny details that will make them feel right at home in a foreign space. Here are some easy details that can take your open house to the next level.


The most crucial part of setting the ambiance for an open house is knowing your audience. Are you in an up-and-coming neighborhood with a lot of millennial potential buyers? You will have to set the ambiance differently than if you are appealing to retired downsizers in a quiet neighborhood. Do not have one single formula for creating the perfect home ambiance. Switch it up to appeal to the target audience for that property.


Do not be afraid of adding music to your open house, but also keep in mind that it should never feel like a house party. Even if you are appealing to a younger audience, people need to be able to picture themselves living everyday life in the space you are showing. The music should not be the most noticeable thing when potential buyers walk in the door.  Music should add to the open house experience in a way that makes the space feel more comfortable and natural to homebuyers.

The music you play should be nothing that people will have any kind of strong opinion about. You do not want to play anything that could annoy people as they walk around. Jazz is a safe bet, as well as instrumental/acoustic versions of popular songs. Or for luxury properties, consider hiring a live musician to play in the background.


Most everyone has heard of the classic cookie baking for an open house- and that’s because it is effective! You can rely on the classic technique, or go more modern with candles or essential oil diffusers. Try to select a scent that appeals to a wide variety of people, and if the home is still lived in, make sure to get the owner's okay before scenting their home.

Keep it Neutral

Unless you are working in new construction, you will be selling a home that has been lived in. While the people have likely made a great life there, you want to present the home as comfortable, but also as a clean slate. This means taking down personal touches that may prevent people from feeling like potential homeowners rather than visitors. You want to keep the right amount of home details that make it feel like a real, liveable home, but you will want to remove the things that are very personal and specific to the people who lived there before such as, kids art or family photos or monogrammed/family name decorative items.

When in doubt, follow your instincts! Consider what things make you feel most comfortable and at home and adjust those details to appeal to the general demographic that will be viewing your home.

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