The Importance of Great Photos When Listing a Home

Photos are first impressions.

I know we said in our Staging Your Home In The Fall blog that curb appeal is the first impression but that’s after you’ve already got your potential buyer there to see the house in person. If your listing photos don’t make a great first impression, some buyers won’t come see the house at all. Therefore, photos are a form of curb appeal so we weren’t wrong (see what we did there?).

According to the Center for REALTOR® Development (CRD), homes with high-quality photos sell 32% faster than their counterparts. Since almost all home buyers search online during the process and 89% of them say photos are among the most useful feature, your pictures better look good.

Here are some important things to note when hiring a pro or attempting to take the photos yourself.

Hire a Pro

Professional Photographer

Hiring a pro is the best way to get quality photos.

“Listing photos can make or break a listing. So many consumers are shopping online before they even contact a real estate agent. One bad quality photo can cost a realtor an entire sale. Being a broker, it’s so difficult to see agents try and save money by not hiring a professional. If you think hiring a professional is expensive, try hiring an amateur. High-quality photos are so important to me that I provide my clients with professional photography free of charge.”

Cody Chembars of Chembars Realty Group Cody Chembars

Professional Photographers (especially if they’ve done real estate before) have the ability to capture beautiful images of homes quickly and efficiently. They are trained to find the perfect angle to make any home look big and bright. It is an investment to hire a professional but the outcome is more than worth it. Their pics can sell the home faster without you having to become a photographer yourself.

Equipment

Photo Equipment

If you are going to take the images yourself, do your homework on equipment. Unfortunately, an iPhone is insufficient for your listing images unless you happen to be a genius with photo editing tools. There are so many cameras out there to choose from, so when you are doing research make sure the camera has all the following capabilities so don’t skimp out!

  • Auto-focus
  • Video capabilities
  • Environmental settings
  • Flash

We suggest a DSLR camera with interchangeable lenses, good resolution quality, versatility, low light performance (environmental settings), and video with 1080p. Also, consider investing in a tripod. Check out this helpful article for more camera suggestions.

Getting the Perfect Photos

Perfect Photos

Once you’ve found the best camera the next big task is taking the perfect picture to represent the house to online viewers. Remember when we said to invest in a tripod? A tripod will be your best friend when taking these photos. Don’t miss out on a beautiful shot because you couldn’t keep your hands steady. Take your photos in natural light. A natural light source opens the home and brightens the photos which helps the editing process afterward. These photos should always portray an open and inviting atmosphere in the house. Make sure your home is picture perfect. Start with de-cluttering and maybe even invest in a deep cleaning. We might know someone who could help in that department.

As the saying goes, you only get one chance to make a first impression so it better be good. Beautiful pictures showcase the homes’ best qualities and entice viewers to visit. The best pictures will not only display a perfectly set interior but help the viewer see themselves in the space. Sharing quality photos are great for buyers and sellers so remember a picture is worth a thousand words and happy photographing!

9 Habits of a Great Realtor

9 Habits of Successful Realtors

It takes a special type of person to succeed as a real estate agent. According to Tom Ferry, real estate coach, and motivational speaker, 87% of all agents fail within the first 5 years. So, how do you break these odds? What habits do the successful 13% of realtors have that make them stand out in this industry?

It’s much more than the number of sales you close or the number of clients you find. You have to commit yourself to habits that will improve your craft and benefit your clients. I’ve put together 9 habits that will help make you a great realtor and make you one of the 13%!

1. Establish a Morning Ritual

morning coffee

A morning routine is a great habit for anyone in any industry. A set ritual can wake you up faster and get you out the door quicker. Everyone’s routine can be different, so make yours essential to you. If you need a coffee first thing, do it. Or, if morning yoga helps get you up and moving, do that. Do what you need to do to put yourself in the right mindset for the day’s goals. Remember a morning routine doesn’t happen overnight (get it?). Be positive and set your mind to it and you’ll see results in no time or at the very least, you won’t be late for work again.

2. Learn About the Neighborhood

map of neighborhood

As a realtor, your clients expect you to be the subject matter expert on specific areas. It’s important that you can answer their questions automatically without thinking. Learning as much as you can about a local neighborhood will extend your value and credibility if you don’t have to “get back to them on that.” Becoming an expert on one area is just the starting point, knowing one area can lead to knowing another, then another. This will broaden your expertise and in turn your client base.

3. Communicate

client phone call

Communication is an imperative skill to have as a real estate agent. Client’s come to realtors to buy or sell a home. There are many steps and confusing terminologies used in this process. Especially with first-time buyers, this is a scary and exciting time. You are fluent in all areas of buying or selling a home. Help them feel more comfortable with straightforward and simple answers to the complicated questions they may have. Make a habit of practicing your pitch with someone in a completely different profession. If they can understand all the nuances then you are on the right track.

4. Time Management

apple watch

Your time is valuable and so is your clients’. Set your calendar and keep to it. Be aware of what your time is worth and treat it with that value. Staying focused on your timeline and communicating with your clients on updates and changes will be appreciated by both parties.

5. Social Media

iphone social media apps

Maintaining updated social media platforms can be a huge resource as a realtor. Getting involved with your target audience will enhance your name and showcase the great work you are doing in your area. You can post about listings, events being held, real estate tips, or your own real estate blog. Take advantage of these free platforms to find and interact with potential new clients and promote your own personal brand.

6. Set Goals and Track Performance

tracking goals and performance

As a realtor, you will get busy and if your tasks and leads are not organized they could be forgotten. Make a habit of tracking all leads and contacts from: open houses, networking events, friend of friends, previous closings, etc. Organizing everything in a Customer Relationship Management tool (CRM) will keep you coordinated and sane during your busiest times. As a leg up, here is a summary list of different CRM tools for realtors to get you started.

7. Relationships Before Sales

Handing keys to client

Just because you are tracking sales and communication doesn’t mean you can ignore relationships. These are not just contacts and leads, these are people. They look to you for advice and guidance, and they have to trust you. The process can become almost effortless after building a strong relationship. Ask questions and be a good listener. Have empathy, the more you can put yourself in their shoes the more respect and trust will develop. It makes your clients feel appreciated and it can lead to them reaching out to you in the future, or recommending you to a friend.

8. Be Aware not Beware

Open door

Every home comes with its own aches and pains. Be aware of the condition of the property and its needs before you show it off. It’s going to come out in the inspection, so being upfront at the beginning will help you get items off the checklist quicker. Keep a policy of transparency to bring you and your client closer to the end goal – a happy new homeowner.

9. Leverage Systems, Technology, and Personnel

Jonny On It AppJonny On It App
Make it a habit to have your business reflect you and the work you provide. Hire slowly and don’t just look at qualifications. You have to work with your staff and they need to “get” you. Take a good look at your current systems and see if you can improve their efficiency with better technology. Consider downloading a few apps to make your job easier. For social media, there’s Buffer or Hootsuite. To easily take notes and sync them on the fly there’s Evernote. And, to get you through that last mile, we’d like to recommend putting Jonny On It!

 

Remember why you started!

 

Our habits define the work we will produce. A successful realtor has at least a few of the above habits down pat. If you want to be a part of the 13% practice communicating, stay organized, and send me, Jonny, to clear your checklist.