Can open house sign-in sheets really go the way of the do-do? That’s the promise of AM Open House, a new tablet-based open house sign-in app from New York Realtor Anthony Mann.
So imagine this. It’s Sunday, and you just finished a great open house. Your open house sign in sheet is completely populated, even if it is a little hard to read, between the chicken scratch of several visitors, and coffee ring that’s blurred the ink in one section.
Still, you’re happy. On your way back to your office (where you plan to input all the names and email addresses from the sign up sheet into your CRM), you call your clients.
You’ve got great news: Eight bona fide prospective buyers stopped by and five of them are potentially interested in submitting an offer.
You hang up and decide that it’s such a gorgeous, fantastic day that you’re going to roll down the window for some fresh air — and just as you do, a blast of wind blows your contact sheet out the window and down the road.
AM Open House • Open House Sign-in App • $4.99/month • Premium Version
Okay, maybe this whole paper-flying-out-the-window is far-fetched, but the inconvenience and looming disaster around relying on printed sign-in sheets (think spilled coffee, water, or just plain losing it) inspired Anthony Mann, AM Open House’s founder and CEO, to create a new iPhone and Android app to eliminate open house sheets.
As a real estate agent with seven years of experience who specializes in REOs and short sales, Mann says his open houses typically attract more than 30-40 prospects, each of whom Mann would urge to write down their names on a piece of paper.
For obvious reasons, Mann dreaded the thought of losing a hand-written sheet of paper with names. But it was more than the fear of losing paper that inspired Mann, to create AM Open House.
“I wanted an app that just focused on open houses,” Mann explains. His goal: Provide an open house solution that managed the entire open house process for agents who might not be comfortable with technology.
While he admits that turning your iPad or tablet into an open sign-in sheet isn’t new (think OpenHomePro), Mann says that he’s tried many of the apps out there and found them to be too complex for the average agent.
How AM Open House Works
AM Open House manages the entire open house process from start to finish, including follow-up.
To start, you add a property to the app with the address, price, beds, and baths. Choose a photo from the photo library on your phone, and click submit.
Once a property has been added to the app, you can schedule an open house by clicking “Add Open House.” Give your open house a title, fill in the details (date, start time and end time), and voilà, it’s scheduled.
The app lets you specify the type of open house you’re holding — broker or consumer — which determines the types of information that the app will ask people when they sign in at your open house.
Once your open house is scheduled, you can share it directly from your phone via text, email, or social media.
As attendees come through your open house, AM Open House enables them to sign in on an iPad or tablet with their name and contact information. All properties and contact information will synch to your other devices when there is an Internet connection.
It’s worth noting that the app will ask attendees which company they’re from if you’ve selected the “broker open” option when creating your open house. In either case, the app will also ask open house visitors how they heard about the open house.
After the visitor finishes touring your listing, the app asks them to sign out. They’re then prompted to answer a few questions about the property.
The sign-out questions include inquiries about the house’s condition to whether the visitors would like to see the home during a private showing. The sign-out process also gives them an opportunity to give additional feedback about the listing. Maybe they loved the wallpaper?
On the Spot Feedback
Since AM Open House collects feedback when users sign out of the app when they’re leaving, the app creates a real time log of what open house visitors really think of the property. This information can be shared with your sellers.
Once you end the open house in the app, everyone who signed in and out on the app receives an email from you (as the agent) to thank them for coming. The email includes links to school district information, things to do in the area (via Yelp), and the Walk Score for the property.
In addition to the app, AM Open House offers a web portal where you can track open house attendees per property or per open house and download their contact information into a CSV file.
All of these features are free, but there is a premium version ($4.99 a month or $49.99 a year) available for agents who want more bells and whistles
You can add or edit a property to the app via the website if you’re a premium user, and edit it. Non-premium users must use the mobile app to make changes to properties.
The premium version of AM Open House will integrate with your CRM. If you use Top Producer, iXACT, PropertyBase, Salesforce, or Contactually, the information that visitors of your open house enter will automatically sync with your CRM.
OpenHome Pro vs. AM Open House
While it’s true that OpenHome Pro is the granddaddy of tablet open home apps, users who just want a simple app to manage open houses may prefer AM Open House.
It’s less than half the price for the premium version ($49.99 a year for AM Open House, vs. $9.99 a month for the pro version of OpenHome Pro).
But your decision to utilize a tablet open home app should not be based on price alone. Mann’s application relies on a fixed presentation of listings with seriously limited editing options, while OpenHome Pro enables you to add notes, custom questions and photos to your listings without being connected to Wi-Fi.
The ability to customize a listing (beyond simply putting in address and a picture) can be invaluable when you have a unique or hard-to-sell property.
Yet’s Mann’s application is attractive, because it’s simple by design, and contains a limited feature set the vast majority of agents are likely to use for most listings.
Either way you go, it could be time to put aside the paper and pencil once and for all.