Merc News Market Wise Q&A: Why Did the Agent Cancel our Open House?


Pat Kapowich for the San Jose Mercury News Q;  We are handling the sale of a vacant property where our Aunt used to live.  She is living in a Board and Care situation and will need the proceeds of her home to complete the financial picture of her estate.  The Agent who is handling the listing and lives on the same street, seems lax at best.  We were told by a former neighbor that the Agent cancelled the Open House last weekend because her company “did not advertise it.”  We are appalled since the property is off a busy main street in town and surely Open House signs alone would draw interest.  What does a company ad in the local newspaper have to do with this Agent’s responsibility to sell our Aunt’s home? 

A: Not much; especially if the For Sale was on the lawn for a week with a sign-rider attached proclaiming “Open This Sunday.” Thanks to the World Wide Web, an Agent with the proper clicks of a mouse can broadcast an Open House to almost every prospective buyer who is interested in your neighborhood or city.  It’s important to note that the majority of buyers are shopping for homes on third-party websites as well as the real-deal local Association of Realtors’ sponsored websites, all of which publicize Open Houses.  Also, there is the Agent’s own Multiple Listing Service, (MLS) which notifies other Agents, who in turn can/will direct their clients to Open Houses. Local newspapers and their busy websites are a great icing on the “Open House” cake, although large and small firms often use a lottery process to decide which ads to place in a newspaper on a particular day.  Regardless, cancelling any Open House because a company sponsored newspaper ad was not run was a common excuse ill-equipped Agents used before the internet; even then it was inexcusable.



Realtor Pat Kapowich, Kapowich Real Estate, is a Certified Residential Broker and instructs quarterly in real estate at De Anza College.  Contact him at (408) 245-7700 or


Realtor Pat Kapowich. Broker/Owner Certified Residential Broker ABR, CRS, GRI & SRES Home Sales Expertise and Experience (408) 245-7700