The very competitive housing market here in St. Charles and the Fox Valley requires that a home be perfectly presented to potential buyers. 90% of home buyers start their home search on the internet and we’ve learned that poor photographs can keep a buyer from asking for a showing of the house.
And now that consumers are viewing homes on high resolution TV screens, iPads and other mobile devices, the importance high quality photos is more important that ever. (Photo above from 43W898 N Sunset Views Drive, St. Charles here).
Mary Umberger of the Chicago Tribune recently interviewed Brian Balduf, chairman of Chicago-based VHT Inc., here. VHT provides professional photography to real estate firms.
In the article, Brian says: “You’re starting to see more progressive real estate firms saying this is important, and they’re having their listings professionally photographed. But it varies a lot, regionally, and the number of professionally shot houses is small, maybe 10 to 20 percent of the market”.
I’m glad that Baird%Warner has every single listing professionally photographed to make sure that our listings look their absolute best online.
Some houses are pretty challenging to photograph. This fabulous mid-century modern at 5n477 Curling Pond Rd in Wayne here has natural redwood ceilings and floor to ceiling windows in every room. The dark ceiling plus the glare from the windows meant that the rooms could photos could have ended up under-exposed or over-exposed. My VHT photographer Jason Bryne used a technique called Clear View to solve the problem. He takes a series of shots of each room at different levels of exposure and then a technician builds the photo combining multiple layers.
Another good quote from Brian Balduf:
“Technology is making it easier to shoot bad photos — camera phones don’t have enough flash or depth of field (for rooms). Your drunk friend at a Cubs game, a camera phone is great for that.”
We always take photos with an iPad or an Iphone during the pre-marketing phase so we can lay out the marketing materials. But we never list a home or print brochures with these working photos. We believe that it is much better for a home to hit the market looking it’s very best. Buyers have short attention spans and may not take another look if the home looked bad. You never have a second chance to make a first impression, and quality photos really do make a difference.