Mmmm, Mmmm, Not-So-Good? The Baked Cookies Open House Aroma

Most real estate professionals have heard the advice of baking cookies before an open house, but did you know there’s a science behind which aromas will trigger pleasant, potentially home-buying feelings and which will not?

Smells to Spend

According to a study completed by Washington State University, there are some smells that make a person more willing to spend money.  The top wallet grabber?  Oranges.  orangeThe simple smell of oranges was found to make shoppers spend 31.8% more than an average smelling store.  Surprisingly, the more complex the orange smell got, either by adding herbs or blending the orange with other aromas made people less likely to spend more (though it was still better than nothing).

Smells to Focus

When your buyer is evaluating your granite marble tops or beautiful fireplace, you want their full attention on your home.  Just like loud, complicated music, complex smells can be distracting.  To create an aura of focus, keep the smells simple.  Use a single fragrance rather than a mixture, and keep the intensity down.  You want to create a pleasant atmosphere, rather than forcing the buyer to stop and try to figure out what that overpowering smell is.

Smells to Avoid

Having established that complex smells are a no-no, you’re likely wondering what constitutes a complex smell.  Two basic examples are baked goods and potpourri.  Both use several components, and each piece competes for attention.  Cookies straight from the oven may put people in a good mood, but it isn’t going to be a spending mood.  Do you remember the last time you tried to have a conversation when some delicious aroma caught your attention?  The conversation likely immediately switched to that smell and how good it would taste.  During an open house, you want the conversation to stay on the house.

Smells to Find

With simplicity in the forefront, there are still several smells you can choose to incorporate in your home.  The top choices to help buyers feel inclined to spend are oranges, lemon, green tea, cedar, pine, basil, and vanilla; pick one and stay consistent.  Another thing to consider when choosing the right aroma for your home is the environment.  Pine is a fantastic choice for its simplicity and peaceful effect, but it isn’t going to work very well if you’re selling a home on the beach.  The smell should flow with your natural environment.

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