Less than 10 seconds. That’s all the time you have to impress a prospective buyer for your house, according to the stats. That’s how long most home buyers spend looking at the first picture in a listing before deciding to look at the rest of the listing or move on to another house.
Good photography is vital to a successful listing, and good photography starts with good preparation. By following these simple seven steps, you can prep your home for the best possible listing photos.
1. Remove flashy decor and personal items that clutter the space.
This may sound obvious, but keep in mind that you’re selling your home, not your furniture or personal belongings. Leave large pieces of furniture in rooms that help frame the picture, but remove flashy decor and personal items that clutter the space. You are trying to appeal to as wide an audience as possible, so keep everything relatively neutral and free from clutter.
2. Beautiful front door framing shots welcome the buyer to look further.
Since the buyer’s initial impression comes from the first outdoor picture, have the lawn mowed, the leaves raked, and the bushes trimmed. Add a pop of seasonal color to the front flower beds. The cars and trash bins should be tucked out of sight. Beautiful front door framing shots welcome the buyer to look further.
3. Rely on natural light to show off your rooms.
Whenever possible, rely on natural light to show off your rooms. Open your blinds, tie back your curtains, and let rays of sunshine in. It’s also not a bad idea to turn on the all of the lights. Replacing all bulbs that are out gives the home a warm glow whether photographing in daylight or twilight.
4. Remember; the kitchen is the heart of the home.
The kitchen is the heart of the home. Stow all small appliances, remove art from the refrigerator. Put soaps, towels, sponges and cleaners away. The counter tops and stove should be clutter free. Place a bowl of fresh fruit on the counter.
5. Give each room a purpose.
That spare room you’ve been using as an office/guest room/dumping ground won’t help sell your home unless you show buyers how they can use it themselves. So pick a use (office, guest room, crafts room) and clearly stage the space to showcase that purpose.
6. Highlight those unique features.
If your home has unique features, be sure to point them out. Every house has characteristics that make it stand out. Perhaps you have beautiful arched windows, a hand-carved banister, or funky, colorful doorknobs. This is your chance to show off!
7. Pay attention to the details.
Just like you would with a writing assignment, go back and “spell-check” your work for errors. At first glance, your home may look just fine, but look closely at small details: are there any exposed wires or cords? You may even want to ask someone else to look over your home with a fresh set of eyes to catch any other minor issues. You’ve seen your house a million times and may not notice things that would stand out to an outsider.
Taking great photos have an enormous impact on how your home will perform on the market. At Properly, we provide a professional photographer for every homeowner we serve, as part of our flat fee service. Our photographers can only work with what they’re given. A little planning goes a long way, and it can make a big difference in the number of buyers you attract. And in our experience, the more interest in a home mostly leads to a better sale price.