It's a well-worn cliche, but first impressions can make or break your sale. In your case, the first place buyers are going to see your property is online.
Use a professional photographer
Back in the day before the digital age, the first impression you might have of a new home was by driving by the property that your real estate agent would have given you from his or her inventory of available listings that matched your criteria in terms of number of bedrooms, bathrooms, etc. You might even wait for the Sunday paper to see if the property had a scheduled open house that weekend before doing a ‘blind’ viewing of the home.
It was then that the term ‘curb appeal’ first appeared, as the ‘drive-by’ was a buyer’s first, and in many instances, only impression of whether or not that home made the list of those getting a second look. It’s why real estate agents made such a big deal with sellers about sprucing up their yards, making sure the grass was cut, the weeds were gone, and the paint on the front of the home wasn’t peeling among other things before ever putting their home on the market.
These days, a property's "pix appeal," or attractiveness in photos posted in online listings, is equally if not even more important, and often buyers won’t even bother seeing a property in the flesh if they’re not impressed by the way it looks online.
Our professional real estate photographers use the latest camera equipment with wide angle lenses and flash as well as their keen eye to stylise spaces and capture the most of each property in a single photograph.
There is no doubt this is a beautiful home, but can you tell the difference between the self taken photos and the professional shot?
Staging your home
Take the time to prepare for the photography by having your home cleaned. Make sure the space is de-cluttered and free of excess ‘things’ such as knick-knacks and personal items. A bathroom bench should not show all of your make-up or daily face scrub routine. A fresh bar of soap and clean towel will suffice.
Let there be light!
Create as much natural light in every room as possible. Letting your buyers know that there is a healthy level of vitamin D flowing through your home will give them a positive outlook and make them comfortable that your home is inviting and fresh. That being said, each home looks better in a different light, and who knows more about your place than you? So, don’t be afraid to shoot at a few different times of day and then choose the best one for you.
Only show people what you want them to see
Most people usually have one room in the house that they may have named the 'Junk Room’. If you have a ‘Junk Room’, exclude this from your online advertisement. Let the buyer discover it when they’ve seen the rest of the property and are already impressed with how well you have presented the rest of the house. Remember, the photos are your first impression. Getting them to your open for inspection is where you’re going to push the sale over the line.
Remove ‘you’ from the equation
Although we all love looking at family photos or holiday snaps, when selling a home try to remove as much of ‘you’ as possible. Replace wall hangings with neutral art and remove photo frames all together.
The more the merrier
Thankfully in the 21st century, we no longer have to count how much film we have left on our Kodak cameras, so make sure you take a few photos of the same room, from a number of angles and different areas. What might look ok in the view finder of your digital camera might not look the same when you upload them to your computer. A large range of images will allow you to make the best decision possible.
If it doesn’t come with the house, don’t shoot it!
You may be very proud of the wall unit you purchased with all your crystal glassware inside for those fancy dinner parties, but taking a photo of furniture that doesn’t come with the property is a waste of a photo spot, not to mention a call of action to any thieves out there with an eye for quality crystal!
Garden of Eden
The same rules apply for shooting the outside of your property as they do for the inside. Remove rubbish bins, cars, seasonal decorations, clothes from the hills-hoist and wipe down any outdoor furniture. Make sure your lawn is mowed; shrubs are neat and try shooting the garden area while standing on a ladder to get a more appealing shot.
Double check all photos to make sure your reflection cannot be seen in any mirror or glass surface. If you're not wearing your Sunday best, these photos could be somewhat embarrassing!
Make the bed!
Some might think this to be an obvious one, but on many occasions we have seen photos where you can see last night’s bed-wear sitting on the floor with some ruffled sheets. Make the bed, plump the pillows and put all your clothes away.