If I sent a real estate photographer to your home right now, what would photos of your home look like? Very few homes are photo ready and if you are thinking about selling your home, you might have your work cut out for you.
I love writing about home design and decor. They are important to me for a number of reasons. Those cute embellishments help create a warm, cozy atmosphere when family or friends come visit. They stamp homes with the personalities of everyone that lives there, tiny museums to lives well lived.
And sometimes they can help to sell a home. If you have ever gone through the ordeal of selling your home, you know how important online photographs are, and how important it is to prepare your home for a real estate photographer, even if that photographer is you.
A good real estate photographer can help you to stage your home, but its not always part of the deal. If you do a little work before they get there, the job will be faster and cheaper. Here are a few tips to help you get your home picture ready!
Your photographer will take a quite a few pictures to give the viewer an idea of what your home is like, and what it might be like for them to live in that same space. The camera will capture every detail. Dirty walls, floors, ceiling will show up in photographs.
Zooming in and out of images means you should leave nothing to chance. Your real estate photographer can photo shop these out but you will still need to deal with them when there is an onsite inspection. Clean your windows, counter tops, walls, and repair and paint any place with mold, scuffs or holes.
Strong lighting is vital for good photographs. Natural lighting is first one the list. Open all the blinds to stream in as much natural light as possible. Repair or replace blinds or curtains that are either damaged or not working.
Make sure every light works and that they are bright enough to make your rooms look fresh and light. Light bulbs should be either incandescent or compact fluorescent. Ask your real estate photographer which one they prefer to work with for the best photographs.
This tip is one of the most difficult for most people. Because you are looking to sell your home, possibly to someone with completely different style and tastes, you should remove everything in your home that makes it feel lived-in. A buyer needs to grasp what their things might look in the space. Leave too many of your items out on display and they will lose focus on making it their home, and drift through your home, thinking about how you live.
What should you remove? Any personal items like photographs or rugs. Instead add neutral pieces, landscape photographs, or object photographs. In essence, you want to make your home as neutral as possible because this helps potential buyers visualize their decorating tastes by taking yours away.
Its about now that most people become overwhelmed. Its one thing to take things out of a room, but where do you store them, and if you sell your home, are they coming with you?
Like tip number 3, this is a difficult tip. After removing items its time to work out if they should be stored, sold or given away. This tip is super difficult if you are not too sure where you are going, how big your new home might be or even the style of your new home.
If you have lived in your home for a long time, its a great time to clean up but it can take more time than you imagine. For now, remove items for the real estate photographer to take photos and then deal with items one by one. Get family and friends over to help, it will be less emotional and easier to deal with.
Its time to pay attention to the exterior of your home. Real estate photography showcases the interior and exterior of your home, which means making the exterior look as inviting as possible by adding curb appeal. You want people to love the outside enough to go inside with just as much enthusiasm.
Try some of the following:
Your loving garden might be hiding the look and potential of your home. Apart from removing toys, sports material, water hoses and your car, your garden needs tidying and cropping back, particularly around your front door.
What you are looking for is symmetry to anchor your home. Once you have cut back as much as possible, and that might even mean removing a tree or two, its time to add greenery on both sides of the door, steps or windows.
Flower boxes under windows and updated, working outdoor lights can make a difference to the front and back of your home. Painting or even replacing your front door can make all the difference to the look of your home. These small changes can give you great photographs that can really sell your home.
That goes for your garage too. A garage with lots of storage, which you can use too, will give potential buyers an idea of what they might do with the space if they buy it. Going right back to the bones of your home will help the photographer sell your house for you.
For the best photographs, and the best sale price, you will want to take the outside to the next level. That includes sweeping away cobwebs from eaves and door frames, removing branches from your roof line, mowing and trimming shrubs.
What can be more time consuming and less fun, is cleaning windows and exterior walls, which you could do using a pressure washer or hire a professional. Either way, just clearing away the dust and dirt will make your home feel new again.
Make sure that every aspect of your front yard or backyard is highlighted. Make the most of your yard, porch and patio areas. Add seating, stain your porch, paint your steps or steam clean bricks or tiles.
If you have a pool or water fountain, make sure they are clean and in top condition. For photographs leave porch lights or any other exterior light on, this will help to highlight the exterior of your home.
Don’t take your photographer’s tips for granted. If you hire a professional real estate photographer, ask them for guidance. They have been photographing homes for sale as a career and has an idea of what potential homeowners want to see and what sells. Ask for additional tips that you can complete before the photo shoot.
It may take some time to get all these tips completed but online buyers love to see detailed photographs about potential homes, so it is definitely worth the time and trouble.