How Professional Photography Can Be Your Secret Weapon

How Professional Photography Can Be Your Secret Weapon

You’ve decided to sell your home, and you know what it looks like. If you close your eyes, you can picture everything from the front entrance to the colors of each room. You’re probably so familiar with the layout that you can navigate coffee tables and ottomans even in the dark.

You could describe your home with words to potential buyers, listing the number of bedrooms, baths, and floor space. But does that honestly portray everything about your home? In today’s competitive real estate marketplace, you need something that distinguishes your home from other Cherry Hills homes for sale.

A picture is truly worth a thousand words

Today’s buyers want visuals. With a tap on their phone, they want to see the inside and the outside of your home — a home that could one day be theirs. One simple photograph can tell a buyer more about your living space than any descriptive paragraph.

And buyers make judgments about your home quickly. In the blink of an eye, they evaluate a wide range of thoughts: Could I see myself living in this space? Is the house well maintained? Is there space for my heirloom armoire? How big is the yard? Good photography creates interest and invites buyers to learn more about the property. Lousy photography can drive potential buyers away.

Taking your own photos

One way to market your home is to take your own pictures. You may have a phone or DSLR. And maybe you’ve taken lots of pictures previously. Before you start snapping, research how to take professional home photos. It’s not easy. Do-it-yourselfers risk making blunders that can even end up on the internet, not to mention turning off buyers.

One of the biggest problems amateur photographers make has to do with lighting. Proper lighting is a technical art and can make or break a shot. Windows and lamps create bright spots, whereas furniture creates shadows. Your goal is to even out the lighting so that the room is bright and appealing, and it’s challenging for amateurs to accomplish.

After you have taken your pictures, you may think you’ve done a great job digitally capturing your home. Now it’s time to let your agent be the judge. The critical eye of a real estate agent can discern amateur from professional home photos. Your agent may think your work is top-notch and will benefit the sale of your home. On the other hand, your agent may tactfully suggest that you might want to consider the services of a professional real estate photographer.

The better choice: Professional images

Professional real estate photographers have better cameras and lighting gear and know what makes a room pop. They make their living by knowing how to take professional home photos. So they can quickly assess a living space and frame the shot to highlight your home's best features.

One study found that listings photographed by a professional sell faster than homes that did not use professional services. Additionally, the work of professional photographers can boost the asking price of a home. Of course, there is a cost to retaining a professional. Yet, when you have a multi-million-dollar Cherry Hills home for sale, expenses are minimal compared to the potential return.

Prep your home for the pros

One of the biggest challenges professional photographers encounter is the seller being unprepared for the photo shoot. The photographer may make suggestions and adjustments on-site to complete the shot, but your prep work comes first. If you aren’t sure what is involved, ask the photographer or your real estate agent for a to-do list when preparing for a real estate photo shoot. Their list will probably include some of the following tips.

Make it shine

Deep cleaning is a must. There’s a saying that goes, “The camera does not lie.” The reason behind this expression is that the camera captures everything within its field of view. It does not discriminate between what you want the buyer to see and what’s physically in the scene. The camera can even accentuate spots and blemishes.

Clean all surfaces, from walls, floors, and counters to mirrors and windows. And don’t forget about the outside of your house. Pressure washing can make driveways, decking, and masonry look like new. Trim the hedges and eliminate plants that look not long for this world. Some sellers even turn to professional cleaning services to detail the home. They can find the imperfections you may overlook and know the trade secrets to getting out the blemishes.

Stage your house for the camera

Staging removes the clutter of daily life, eliminates personal items like family photographs, and leaves just enough furniture and decorative detail so buyers can envision themselves living in your home. Again, the camera reveals everything. Too much furniture in a space may seem cozy, but the buyer may sense that the room is small and cramped.

Look at the listings of other Cherry Hills homes for sale to understand what’s involved in staging a home. Remember also to pay as much attention to staging the exterior of your home. Similar to professional cleaners, professional staging services are available for a fee. These pro stagers have art, flora, and other decorative details that elevate your home to professional photo readiness.

Every detail matters

You may think nothing of the cute cat bed in the corner of the room, but the home buyer immediately assumes pet damage. Similarly, you may not think about the extension cords that extend along baseboards, but the homebuyer may question the number of outlets in the house. Examine every picture for small details that may detract from the value of your home. Pay special attention to items that may date the photograph. Holiday decorations do not help to sell homes weeks or months after the holiday has passed.

More options

Professional real estate photographers offer services beyond two-dimensional photographs, such as 360-degree panoramic photos or three-dimensional walkthroughs/virtual tours. Drone photography can capture unique exterior views emphasizing the landscaping and spaciousness of the home’s surroundings. All these tools allow potential buyers to engage with and experience your home's beauty.

Good agents know the best photography services

Experienced real estate agents have established connections with high-quality real estate photographers in your local area. They know which photographers have the expertise to show off your home's qualities and catch buyers' interest.

If you have a Cherry Hills home for sale, consider contacting Ashleigh Fredrickson for assistance. Ashleigh thoroughly understands the Denver real estate market and ranks among the top real estate professionals in the nation. She can help you prepare your home for marketing and ensure you choose the best professional photographer to help sell your home faster and for the best price. Reach Ashleigh today.

*Header photo courtesy of Shutterstock


Her commitment to understanding and staying ahead of real estate market trends, extensive knowledge of Denver's neighborhood dynamics, and white glove service to buyers and sellers alike have led to her continued success.

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