Where Do The Buyers Come From?Several studies from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) will help clarify where the buyers really do come from.
First, it's definitely NOT from open houses. As you can see on the graph below, only 1% of buyers come from open houses. Why on earth do agents hold open houses then? Why waste time if the odds of selling your house is only 1%? Good question. The answer may shock you: Agents hold open houses to troll for more clients. Agents always need fresh clients, and what better way than to have a parade of buyers come strolling through your house so the agent gets to meet these buyers. Chances are almost zero that your house will fit the criteria these buyers want. But the agent tries to sign them up so they'll use him to buy their next house. Ingenious! Free advertising with ready-made buyers walking in the door!
So you get kicked out of your home for several hours on a Sunday afternoon and have a bunch of strangers snooping around your house, getting into your personal belongings, maybe helping themselves to a few items. In the mean time, the agent is busy trying to reel in a prospect in the other room and has no idea what is happening upstairs.
Maybe you guessed it - we do NOT recommend open houses. People have come to expect them and think they are even necessary, but you can see the data for yourself - they do not work! Agents are trained to do them so they can pick up new clients. Period. I have worked in several brokerages and this is what agents are taught to do to get new buyer clients.
As you can see from both charts, almost 80% of buyers come from other agents plus internet. NAR found that 87% of all internet shoppers ultimately have a buyer agent represent them in the transaction when they do finally buy. Hence, we can see the truth again: most buyers come from other agents. Even the 10% that come from yard signs call their own agent to make arrangements to see inside. Add the "friend/neighbor" catagory and we're over 90%. The listing agent simply does not bring the buyer over 90% of the time.