Table of Contents Show
As the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. It is taken as a given when it comes to buying real estate. Nowadays, more than ever, homebuyers are making full use of home listings on the internet to comb through all the properties on the market in search of their dream home. It makes the photos you use with a listing of prime importance. However, there’s just one problem. Too many homeowners and real estate agents forget about photo quality. Blurry, out-of-focus, and poorly angled photos can positively affect your property listing. To attract buyer interest, you need a trained professional photographer listing photos.
Naturally, this means paying an additional expense, so many sellers resort to old listing photos or their cell phone cameras. Hiring a professional photographer can be a worthwhile investment, although many think it is a needless expense. But don’t take our word for it; let the facts speak for themselves.
Why Photos MatterWhy Photos Matter
The National Association of Realtors published its 2019 buyers and sellers profile late last year. 87% of buyers who searched for a home on the internet found photos one of the most valuable features when deciding on a purchase.
Almost no one made it to the following two steps if the photos weren’t enticing enough. Additionally, a 2011 scientific study that tracked participants’ eye movements as they reviewed online home listings found that 95 participants’ eye movements the photos of the home. The study further says that participants would turn to the property description section after viewing the images and the real estate agent’s open remarks section. It confirms what most of us already know that listing photos are essential. But what about the sales price? Do photos affect that?
Another study completed a few years ago found that the quality of listing photos could add anywhere between $934 and $116,076 to the final sales price. That’s a big difference, and, what’s more, higher quality photos also increase the number of people clicking on your listing. With more clicks comes more offers and the potential for a bidding war.
What Makes Professional Photos BetterWhat Makes Professional Photos Better
You can always distinguish between amateur photography and professional real estate photography. There’s simply no comparison. But what does that difference boil down to, and what are you getting for your money?
- Art Direction – A professional photographer doesn’t just aim to take photos; they aim to create art. This means shooting hundreds of pictures from different angles and lighting setups to ensure your home looks as good as it can be. Of course, you won’t need hundreds of listing photos. But this approach will ensure you get only the best pictures.
- Staged Photography – Emotions drive most home sales; nothing creates emotions like a staged home. It allows potential buyers to envision living in the house. Staging your home and getting a professional photographer should be considered the twin tracks in your marketing campaign.
- Perfect Composition – Great real estate photos need the right light, angles, and composition to create the emotion you need homebuyers to feel. A professional knows how to bring all this together to create spectacular photos.
- Scouting Before the Angles – A proper photoshoot requires preparation. When you hire a professional, they will spend time before the shoot viewing the property. They’ll find the best angles, analyze the home’s light exposure, and determine what equipment they need. Doing all this ensures that everything goes perfectly on the big day.
- Post Production Editing – After carefully selecting the best photos, the photographer will enhance each. They will brighten colors, edit unpleasant features, and add contrast to give the photos a real punch. This is no simple task, and to do it well requires a high level of experience. Post-Production – Photo editing software is expensive, so hiring a professional with this software and the expertise to use it properly is cheaper.
Put all this together, and you have some stellar photographs that immediately hook buyers in. These buyers won’t know why they love these photos. They’ll know they do.
How Much Does a Professional Real Estate Shoot Cost?How Much Does a Professional Real Estate Shoot Cost?
On average, the cost of hiring a professional real estate photographer can be anywhere from $150 to $300. The price will vary depending on the home’s size and the photographer’s experience level.
How to Find a Real Estate PhotographerHow to Find a Real Estate Photographer
Your broker will likely help you find the right photographer for the job. This will usually be someone they’ve worked with previously and can vouch for. But if you want to find one on your own, then this is what to look for:
- A Strong Resume – They should have experience working in the industry for at least 1-2 years. Not just general photography, but specifically real estate photography.
- An Impressive Online Portfolio – Always review their work ahead of time. Almost every professional photographer will have their portfolio website showing homes they’ve photographed in the past.
- The Right Equipment – Professional real estate photography requires more than a good DSLR camera. At a minimum, they should also have a wide-angle lens, a tripod, and access to photo editing software like Adobe Photoshop.
- A Good Reputation – Great real estate photographers will have a long list of references and referrals from previous clients. Ask for these if they’re not included in their resume.
How to Prepare Your Home for the ShootHow to Prepare Your Home for the Shoot
Time is money in this business, so if you want everything to go smoothly, you should prepare your home for the shoot day.
- Clean – Perform a deep clean of every room in your home. A professional cleaning company is recommended if you want it to look picture perfect.
- Declutter – Get rid of all objects that might clutter up the home. This includes small appliances, personal effects, and unpleasant eyesores like cables and wires.
- Depersonalize – Potential buyers need to visualize living in the home. So remove anything that can get in the way of that. This includes family photographs, fridge magnets, toys, and pet accessories.
- Stage – Go through every room with a critical eye and tweak things to make them look their best. You should remove window blinds and screens to allow plenty of natural light. You can also add splashes of color like fresh flowers or a plush throw pillow. Small touches like this can make a big difference in making your home feel more welcoming.
Final ThoughtsFinal Thoughts
Once you have your listing photos, you’ll see they were well worth the expense. Your sales listing will stand out like a shining star, and you should immediately start getting phone calls. You can now use these photos for your entire marketing campaign, not just your online listing. Your listing broker can share these with private contacts and social media accounts to generate even more attention. Considering the small cost of hiring a professional photographer and what you stand to gain, this is a marketing investment with perhaps the most significant ROI.