Make A Great First Impression
The first impression a buyer has of your home is the most likely going to be the photos online. So it is extremely important to that the listing for your home have photos that impress and whet buyers’ appetite for a visit. If you have a Realtor® insist they take or commission great pictures from a real estate photographer. If you are selling For Sale By Owner (FSBO) pay someone to take great photos, click here to get free professional photos or take them yourself using the tips below.
Remember, if people don’t like what they see, they will not come to see your home. And if you are really motivated to sell don’t you want people to come by? I have been a photography aficionado for decades and happen to know a thing or two about pictures. I take my own pictures for my listings and even photograph homes for other Realtors® on occasion. So I cannot underscore how important it is to have great pictures of your home – it matters a lot!
Clean Up Your Home
The first step to taking great photos is actually getting your house ready for them. Make sure you declutter and depersonalize your home. Remove toys, any stuff that is laying around, refrigerator magnets and the like. You don’t have to pack up the house but you definitely want to show off the space. If the home seems a little lifeless after you clean it up liven it up with tasteful accent items. The good news is is that you would need to do this anyways in order to show the home. So this is a two-for-one!
You will need some decent photography equipment. Don’t try taking pictures on your phone! There is a very slim chance they will come out nicely. Use a camera that has a wide angle option or a camera onto which you can put a wide angle lens. If you don’t have this equipment, borrow it, rent it or buy it. It will be well worth it. Good photography is simply not a detail you can overlook when selling your home.
Light & Bright on the Inside
Try to let in as much natural light as possible in order to avoid having to use your camera’s flash. The flash can cast shadows and make pictures look bad, so let the light shine in! Use a tripod to avoid having to use the flash.
Turn on lights even though they may not necessarily contribute to the overall lighting. In some cases it may be better to have the lights off, but you will have to be the judge of that. If you are in doubt, take pictures with both the lights on and off. You can always fix lighting issues in a photo editing program.
Photos of the outside are just as important as photos of the inside. You will need to clean up the outside of the home to give it great curb appeal for photos and for showings. Another two-for-one, not bad!
Make sure you open the curtains and photograph the outside on an overcast day. This may seem contrary to logic but the lighting is even on days that are overcast. The gloomy look of the day can be brightened up in an editing program, and it will be very easy if the lighting is even from the get-go.
Last Bit of Photo Advice
Make the effort to take great photos, but whatever you do, don’t misrepresent your home. Misrepresenting your home is worse than posting bad photos of it. If you misrepresent it and buyers come to see it, and it is not what they saw in the photos, you can bet you will never hear from them again. Keep it real.
Désirée Ávila was an award winning teacher for 10 years and has a doctoral level education in Educational Technology. Désirée is now a licensed Florida Realtor and committed to a high-level of professionalism and to helping others with their real estate endeavors through education.