LISTING PHOTO BY KATHLEEN HEITHORN-ALTHOFF
I want to bring up the issue of listing photography again because I still continue to see a lot of bad examples of it on MLS.
The Internet is now for most people the first point of contact when shopping for a home. This is their first impression, not the curb appeal and front foyer as I would normally highlight in my staging consultations.
Because of this fact, you simply need good listing photos. You could spend thousands of dollars on staging, revamping, painting - lots of elbow grease that could easily be massively impacted by the lack of good listing photos. Talk to your realtor, or if you are a realtor make a very small investment in hiring a professional photographer to take the photos. It will make a world of difference. As everyone knows, sales is a numbers game, the more people you bring into your listing the higher chance of success and good photos are going to do this.
Things I see in local MLS listing photos that could benefit from professional photography:
Poorly lit rooms making them appear dark and unwelcoming
<TURN THE LIGHTS ON AND OPEN THE WINDOW TREATMENTS>
A very narrow field of vision
<A PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHER CAN PROVIDE A WIDE ANGLE LENS SO YOU CAN SEE THE WHOLE BATHROOM NOT JUST THE SINK>
Unneeded artistic nuances such as fuzzy edging, soft focus etc.
<YOU DON’T WANT YOUR LIVING ROOM TO LOOK LIKE THE SET OF A SOAP OPERA - THERE’S NO NEED FOR ADDED AESTHETICS TO PHOTOS - CLEAN, SHARP, PROPERLY EXPOSED PICTURES ARE BEST>
Photos of properties in the winter and it’s now July
<IF POSSIBLE RESHOOT YOUR LISTING SO IT REPRESENTS THE RIGHT SEASON (i.e. no Christmas tree shots in March) - EVEN IF IT’S FOR YOUR OWN WEB SITE SO IT DOESN’T AFFECT THE LISTING - IF YOU’VE HAD YOUR PROPERTY ON THE MARKET THIS LONG THEN MAYBE HIRE A STAGER ;)
Photos of messy rooms
<YOU DON’T NEED A STAGER TO CLEAN UP A ROOM BEFORE PHOTOS ARE TAKEN - MAKE SURE THE ROOMS ARE AT LEAST CLEAN AND TIDY>
<SOMETIMES THE FAMILY PET MAKES A CAMEO APPEARANCE IN A PHOTO OR THERE IS AN ODD SHOT OF A STAIRWELL AND NOTHING ELSE; SHOW THE SPACE AND THE HOME, NOT IRRELEVANT SUBJECTS> Gloomy exterior shots
<AVOID TAKING EXTERIOR SHOTS THAT GIVE THE HOME A GLOOMY, GRAY APPEARANCE. IF POSSIBLE SHOOT ON A SUNNY DAY WITH THE SUN ON THE HOUSE NOT IN BEHIND. A NICE TIME OF DAY TO SHOOT IS EARLY IN THE MORNING (AFTER A TRIP FOR COFFEE) OR LATER IN THE DAY, THIS IS ESPECIALLY IMPORTANT IN THE WINTER WHEN THERE IS VERY LITTLE GREENERY>