Most Saskatoon real estate practitioners are keenly aware that home buyers are flocking to the internet to search for Saskatoon homes. Some surveys indicate that as many as 85% of prospective home buyers start their search online. Next to the awesome power of the Multiple Listing Service® to expose a listing to agents, the Internet is now the single most important marketing venue for real estate. Naturally, photographs are an important part of the internet and MLS® marketing plan. Many times, buyers will decide if they’ll visit a house, and agents will decide if they’ll show a property based on the strength of the photos which accompany the listing.
With that in mind, I can’t help but be amazed at the substandard work which agents and sellers seem to be prepared to accept when it comes to photography. If you’ve spent any amount of time looking at homes on the internet, you’re already aware that there are far too many lousy and useless images out there. This afternoon, I spent just thirty minutes on a real estate website and found enough awful photos to prepare a virtual tour titled, “The Unbelievably Bad Real Estate Photography Hall of Fame.” You might check it out, just for fun. I actually found a photo of a living room with an old man apparently sleeping in a recliner. I wish I was kidding, but I’m not.
Good quality photographs are difficult to achieve and it’s very clear that a real estate agent can’t be expected to have professional photography skills. They should however be able to recognize a completely terrible image and keep themselves from posting it where the whole world may see it. Common sense should tell us that some routine tidying up will enhance our images, that proper lighting is essential for good exposures and that we shouldn’t take pictures of rooms that can’t adequately be captured with the equipment we’re using.
I purchased my first digital single-lens reflex camera approximately 18 months ago. Since that time, I’ve invested in a super wide-angle lens and a high-quality flash. I’ve invested hundreds of hours in studying photography and image processing. I’m starting to feel pretty good about the images I’m able to capture.
If you’re thinking of selling your home, here are a few things to keep in mind.
- Ask prospective agents to show you samples of their photographic work and understand that what they show you probably represents their best effort.
- Insist on reviewing images before they are posted to the MLS® or the Internet.
- Demand retakes of images that don’t show your home professionally.
- View my report, “Preparing for a successful photoshoot.”
- Hire me! I will do a fine job of presenting your home to agents and home buyers.
I’m always happy to answer your Saskatoon real estate questions.
Royal LePage Vidorra