Our Property Expert, Andrew Winter, explains why the photographs you use to sell your home are so important.
When I first worked in real estate, in the mid 1980s, things were very different. I was young, of course, and the most high tech thing in the office was an electronic typewriter, for the secretaries exclusive use only - while he or she was not busy emptying his or hers sale colleagues ash trays!
Real selling was the word of the day, no Internet, social media etc. People had to come to us, we had to talk to them, phone them and send bits of paper to them to entice them to inspect and buy a home. Yet despite the importance of the ‘property details’ hand out, the window display in our offices and the printed ad, in that era the imagery of a property almost came second place to the wording. A single Polaroid was flash, more than one image per home was almost excessive. As I've already said, how times have changed!
Selling in this decade is all about the image. However, it is still all relative. If everyone in your local market is selling using one rather poor picture, you may get away with it, but I doubt that is the case anymore?
So here are a few tips as a guide –
- Employ the professionals – using your smart phone or your Agents is not good enough, interiors are particularly difficult to capture because of lighting so a good quality camera and someone who knows how to operate it is the key.
- Always have an exterior front shot, some unit owners, even some home owners either don’t post it or leave it to the end of a posting, buyers really want to know what their investment will look like from the street, exclude this and it gets buyers very nervous.
- In print and online, the main picture or thumbnail of any advert or listing is the difference between you attracting or detracting buyers. It really can be a simple as that. So make sure you consider your choice carefully.
- Beware of picture overload. Typically 10 – 15 images maximum is enough, go for quality rather than quantity and ensure they show not just furnishings but the room themselves. Lifestyle shots, twilight images etc. have to be thought about carefully and only utilized in conjunction with more traditional shots.
- Be wary of the wide angle or fish eye lens. Making your 4m x 4m room look 8m x 8m is not good, you entice buyers who inspect and are instantly disappointed.
Please consider the order of pictures online. Remember you only have seconds before someone may get bored and move on. Generally a typical home should first feature exterior, some prime interior shots including kitchen first, but any of your unique selling points, such as views, a pool, a terrace in an urban location if it is special, make sure it’s at the beginning!
So ignore the importance of images when you are selling at your peril, I remember on a trip to Brisbane in the mid/late 1980s where Agents used black and white sketches to sell homes! Things really have changed.