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The importance of digital photography when selling your Greater Cleveland Home has never been more important than today. The only exception will be next year, when it will be even more important as the number of buyers who start their home search online is growing each and every year.
What prompted this post was the other day...I was looking through homes for sale in our local Cleveland Ohio MLS system and noticed that the most expensive home for sale in a community (and it was an EXPENSIVE home), where the main photo was of thumbnail size, the lighting was poor and the resolution was far too low. In fact, I had to squint to make out any details.
I took a photo from one of my recent listings and made it about the same size and resolution as the one in question and reduced the quality, size, and lighting so as to make for an easier visual representation.
The bad photo in question suffered from these deficiencies:
Size. A normal sized photo in our MLS is 640x480. This one had to been about 230x140.
Resolution. 72 dots per inch (dpi) is needed for on screen display. 250-300 is needed for printing. I'm guessing this photo was more in the range of 20-40dpi from just eyeballing it, but who knows, it was poor.
Focus. Ensuring the image is in focus, the main subject area is what is in focus, and ensuring the camera is still when taking the photograph is also very important.
Lighting. Shooting a photo of a room when there is a window letting bright light is a sure fire way to underexpose the shot as the camera will think the lens has far more light than actually exists, thereby creating a dark photo.
Levels/Histogram. Taking a look at the histogram on the camera or in the equivalent Levels feature in Photoshop can help improve an imbalance of white/black pixels. It cannot make magic for an extremely poor shot, but it can help improve a shot somewhat.
While some of the eight bullets play off each other, it's amazing to me in 2010 how many photographs of residential real estate for sale in the Greater Cleveland Ohio marketplace suffer from one or more of the above problems. Not that a photo needs to be professional quality to entice a buyer to view a home (that is always the goal), but there is so much out there today with wide-angle lenses, digital editing software, better quality lenses for reasonable prices as well as sophisticated digital SLR cameras, let alone a plethora of information on the web to learn, that a lot of experimentation, a willingness to learn, some decent equipment and your sellers will be well represented on the web.
To do otherwise, well, your sellers are being short changed.
I think if I were a seller today and I had a good understanding of digital photography, one of the key elements I would focus on in a listing presentation is for the listing agent to provide concrete examples of current and recent listings and go over their online photographs, printed marketing materials, etc., to see first-hand how my home would most likely be represented on the web. Here are some photos from one of my recent listings that I listed last week (which went under contract in 4 days) so one can see that this should be the minimum bar.)
After all: Do you want a buyer to click SAVE TO FAVORITES or NEXT?
Would this photo make you want to click SAVE or NEXT?
Sellers: Carefully evaluate the REALTOR you hire to represent your largest investment!
Which photo would you want displayed to the world of potential home buyers?
Same question for this photo?
I will include a few more photos of this property here that I took last week for this fine, luxury home property.
Chris Olsen, Broker, Owner, REALTOR Olsen Ziegler Realty Cell: 216.702.0537 Serving the Greater Cleveland, Ohio Residential Real Estate Marketplace
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.