What do you do with the "leftovers" from your Open Houses?

The challenge

It’s 5 o’clock in the evening. Your last potential buyer has departed with your business card in hand. The open house was a success, and you stop a moment to bask in the moment, realizing that all of your hard work had paid off. You start helping your agent with the cleaning and straightening back up the the home.

You walk towards the kitchen of the home that still smells of fresh cookies, and you unexpectedly realize that the tables hold a mass of uneaten appetizers and refreshments. You’d given the caterer a number of expected guests, and you take a moment to tally up the guest sign-in sheet, only to realize that the total given to the caterer was over estimated. So what can you do with all of this leftover food from your open-house?

The solution

By taking the time to do some research before your event, you can easily deliver the leftovers to your local fire/police dept or a charitable organization that feeds people that are in need. I use to first ask my realtor if he/she wanted them for themselves or their office. 95% of the time they would say, “no.” I would then recommend and offer to bring them to the local firemen down at the firehouse. I would tell the agent to hand me a dozen cards and let him/her know that I will leave both our biz cards with the platters of food. I swear that this lead to well over 100 loans over a 10 year period with just local fire departements that I would "think of first." We supported their “toys for tots,” and built a relationship with the fire departments that was very beneficial and rewarding.

Another option:

Here are 5 websites that accept food donations from events, caterers, and restaurants.

  1. Great Non-Profits is an organization that allows you to search for a charitable organization by City or State, or by issues.

  2. Homeless Shelter Directory is another website that offers a clickable map allowing you to find Homeless Shelters, Food Banks, and Soup Kitchens within your area.

  3. Transfernation is an app that works similar to a rideshare app, however, instead of requesting a ride like you would with Uber or Lyft you’re seeking a pick-up of your New York City event’s leftovers. These leftovers are then delivered to the closest homeless shelter or food bank in your area.

  4. Feeding America’s website is a Food Bank locater, in which, you can locate food bank’s in your area.

  5. Food Rescue.US is another organization that is committed to ending food insecurity. They currently operate out of 14 cities in the US.

So, the next time that you host an open house make sure that you prepare to donate your leftover refreshments to those that are in your community or those that need and join the thousands that are stepping up also to become good Samaritans.

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