Ask yourself, "What makes my $165,000 listing better than  the twenty other  $165,000 listings?"  Hopefully, your answer will include the fact your property STANDS OUT from the others.  For one thing, it just LOOKS better.  It ATTRACTS ATTENTION more than the others do.  People are compelled to "drill down" online, and then go see it in person. 

A SIMPLE TRUTH: Great Images and tours have POWER to persuade.

. . .  So, how do you make that happen? These useful articles will help you find out.  Enjoy.

20 Seconds is all you have to grab the buyer's attention!

Here is some great information regarding just how long someone looks at your listing online ... and why! Here is an interview of Sanette Tanaka, a feature writer for the Wall Street Journal.

Read the full article published by the Wall Street Journal, click here.

Staging Tips

You know how important proper staging is, right? The buyers must "see themselves" living in the home and also see it at its best.  Great online photos are the first ingredient of SUCCESSFUL staging!  Think about it -- its all about what meets the buyer's eyes and engages the other senses.  So, be sure the home is staged not only for showings, but for the photographer in the first place!

Here is a practical checklist for staging that results in a faster sale:

Credit for this list goes to Jane Haas, Jane Haas Photography of Davenport, Florida.
To print, right click on the image and choose "view image" then print normally.

Steps to Great Photography

Okay, let's say that once in a while your listing is too remote, too small, too...anything to arrange for professional phoptography. Or maybe you need the images TODAY! Here are the basics of what you need to do with your own camera in order to get good results that will attract buyers.

Selling a home used to be all about "curb appeal," or the first impression a property conveys to potential buyers as they pull up in front. A house that looks unattractive from the street won't sell, the mantra goes.

These days, a property's "pix appeal," or attractiveness in photos posted in online listings, is equally important. Close to 90 percent of homebuyers use the Internet to search for a home, according to a National Association of Realtors survey.

"Without [great] pictures I am much less likely to go see a house," says house hunter Dan Dillbeck, of Grand Rapids, Mich. In most cases, online photos are his first view of a home, he says, adding that poor pictures tend to turn him away.

Photographs are powerful bait. Good ones can lure buyers; poor ones can do the opposite. Follow these tips to create flattering photos of your property.

1. Use a wide angle lens. For interior shots, nothing beats showing as much of a space as possible, and today many “point and shoot” cameras are equipped with ultrawide lenses (usually referred to as “24mm equivalent.” Look for a camera that offers 20 to 24mm wide angle and certainly no more narrow than 28mm. 

CAUTION: Be careful to line up your shot so that the walls, appliances, and furnishings to not create an unnatural angle converging toward the top or the bottom of your image. Studies have shown the viewer’s eye does not correct these angles, which can be confusing or misleading.

2. Lighten up. For exterior shots, shoot in the middle of the day when the sun is shining and the sky is blue, says Gregory Haberstick, who trains professional photographers for Foxtons, a real-estate company serving New York and New Jersey.

For interior shots, Bill Bayless, a real-estate photographer in Damascus, Ore., suggests turning on all the lights and using a flash. "The flash adds in all of the correct colors and fills in the shadows, making the room look brighter," he says.  

3. More is better. Homebuyers want to see more than just the front of the house. Buyers also want to get a look at the living room, kitchen, dining room, family room, master bedroom/bathroom and the backyard, Bayless says. He suggests including your residence's best features, such as a home theater or an exercise room.

For condos and apartments, include shots of amenities such as a pool, tennis court or gym, says Kevin Grolig, a real-estate agent with Llewellyn Realtors in Rockville, Md.

If your home has a spectacular view, say of a beach, lake, mountains, park or golf course, by all means post photos of those as well, says Ron Luxemburg, a photographer in Pasadena, Calif.

4. Get a clear shot. Remove clutter from an area before photographing it. Clear counter space and remove fridge magnets, children's toys, dirty dishes and other distractions, says Haberstick.

"I've been known to spend a few hours moving things around," says Grolig. He relocates appliances and makes beds to get the best photo.  Most photographers will not do that, for many reasons.

For outside shots, put away garbage cans and remove the car from the driveway, he says. Try not to include telephone poles, wires and other distractions or homes in the scene. BUT, be honest with your images and do not “photoshop out” any permanent features that sneak into the image unless it is understood they are present (e.g., occassionally power wires may be removed from view if not deceptive – use good judgement!). Never, ever, “repair” a bad roof or “patch” a badly pitted driveway. If a lawn does look good in the Spring, it is okay to show it that way. Be ethical.

5. Edit the Images. Look at each of your images in a computer-based program and correct the exposure and cropping if needed. Many good software programs are free or included with your computer. Others can be had for low cost, and still others like professionals use are quite expensive. Be mindful that many MLS systems also require images that are a certain maximum size and ratio of width to height, such as 4:3 (most common) or 3:2.  Very few listing services can accommodate sizes such as 16:9 wide angle without creating distortion. NOTE: When using a professional photohgrapher for your MLS, make sure he or she can make adjustments to still pictures which conform to size constraints.

Some exerpts above are included from an article by Dana Mattioli of the Wall Street Journal

So there you are... but remember, if you want terrific results, the very best decision is to hire a professional like Phil Tuggle!  Your listing will probably sell faster!

Call Aerial Lens LLC at 803-464-8349


STUDIES PROVE: Great Photos and Tours Pay Off!