Please fix your mls pictures

Real Estate Agent with Long & Foster

When i take on a listing, i belive that the mls system is our most powerful tool. I would also like to say that the picure on the mls is the first thing that customer and agents look at. In most cases if there is not a picture the listing will not even get looked at. Below i have listed a few things about listing pictures that i do.

1. Do not submit a listing without a photo. This is something that i cant personally belive that agents do.

2. Post multiple photos. It doesnt take too long to snap a few photos while your already walking a house. Please tell me that  you are walking your listings.

3. Edit your photos. It only take an extra minute to run your photos through Publisher or any number of other photo programs.

4. Take some spring time photos. If the pictures of your listing has something covered in snow please take a new photo. This also applies to new construction photos, when the house is complete, take a fresh photo.

5. Clean up your photos. If there is a trash can in the photo, move it before you take a picture. If your taking your main picture and there is a window unit a/c, see if you can get it moved. There are lots of these examples but just use common sense. Make sure you have homeowner permission before moving anything.

6. Take neighborhood photos. With lots of developments there are great views, or amenities that would be great to show as part of your package. Not too many agents do this, so you can set yourself apart.

These are just a few ideas, but the point is pictures are a valuable resource so dont ignore it. You owe it to your lising and to yourself! Thanks for reading.




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Amanda Wilson
EWM International Realtors, Inc. - Fort Lauderdale, FL
Real Estate Advisor

Walter..thanks much--what i really love is when the listing agent rants and raves about the listing and then only provides 1 or 2 pictures of the outside!  it's crazy...we have 16 photo spots on the MLS--use every one with pride! 

Apr 22, 2009 04:27 AM #1
Robert Wall
Sun Real Estate, Inc - Millbrook, AL

Great points Walter! I hate when the picture is just plain awful....turns the buyer off instantly. But on the flip side some photos can be very deceptive...and when you take the Buyer out they can't believe it is the same house. We need to do what we can to be both honest and present the home in the best light.

Apr 22, 2009 04:27 AM #2
Cherry Wings Realty
Cherry Wings Realty - Traverse City, MI
Your Traverse City Michigan Realtor


Great advice.  In this market with so many options to choose from, sometimes the first look at the primary picture is enough to make us want to just move on to another listing.  Just like anything else, we only have one shot to make a first impression of the properties that we are marketing for our clients.  Make it a great one.


Apr 22, 2009 04:33 AM #4
Georgia Weaver
Weaver Realtors - Storm Lake, IA
A Promise Made is a Promise Kept! 712-291-0118


Did you know your MLS can set rules that pertain to the listing pictures? Ours just made it a rule that no listings go on without at least 1 picture.  We still have some pretty poor pictures but that is another battle to be fought!

I believe in great pictures, I know the picture quality is akin to the agent/brokerage quality and attention to detail. Now days you don't have to be a camera geek to get good pictures and your clients should expect top quality pictures, it is part of my service.

Great article

Apr 22, 2009 04:45 AM #5
Konnie Mac McCarthy
MacNificent Properties, LLC - Cobb Island, MD
Broker/Owner - VA & MD "Time To Get A Move On!"

I agree..I have seen some of the nicest homes, with no or bad photos...Photos sell homes..they really do..

Apr 22, 2009 05:00 AM #6
Erik Hitzelberger
RE/MAX Alliance - Louisville REALTOR-Luxury Homes - Louisville, KY
Louisville - Middletown Real Estate

Excellent points Walter.  I am writing a post about my recent experience as a buyer and I can assure you one of my biggest complaints is photos.  It is 10 times as frustrating from the buyer side as from the agent side. 

Apr 22, 2009 05:04 AM #7
Associate Broker Falmouth MA Cape Cod Heath Coker & - Falmouth, MA
Heath Coker Robert Paul Properties Falmouth MA

Many agents hee have pictires of a beach and a sunset in their pic pack.  Many of the homes aren't close to the beach.  All the more reason to be getting advice from a pro.

Apr 22, 2009 05:19 AM #8
Aaron Poling
Long & Foster - Martinsburg, WV
Working to get YOU the BEST Deal!

Thanks for all the comments. I think this is very relevant in todays market when buyers do so much of their own research online. Buyers Love pictures, and so do I.

Apr 22, 2009 05:20 AM #9
Michael S. Mackey
CENTURY 21 All Islands - Mililani, HI

If everyone takes all your tips I won't have as much fun laughing at those photos with unmade beds, sinks full of dishes, dogs chewing their favorite toys on the couch, and beerbellied homeowners standing in the doorways!

Apr 22, 2009 05:25 AM #10
Mike Eddy
Coldwell Banker Island Properties - Wailea, HI
Maui Real Estate Broker

Aaron - These are all right on target. Our MLS also requires at least one photo when the listing is entered. I also think it's important that the first photo be the one to really showcase the property, not the one you took of the toilet with the lid up :-)

I'm new here so I have to ask, why is everyone calling you Walter? I see no mention of that name anywhere on this page or in your profile? Inquiring minds need to know.


Apr 22, 2009 06:00 AM #11
Joe Garcia

Good advice.. Can't agree more. I have people that won't look at the listing or say they don't want to sell it bad enough cause of pictures or VT



Apr 22, 2009 06:10 AM #12
Tom Boos
Sine & Monaghan Realtors, Real Living - Grosse Pointe Farms, MI
Providing the very best of service to Sellers and

Good advice for all of us who've been lax in this department.  Thanks.

Apr 22, 2009 09:09 AM #13
Aaron Poling
Long & Foster - Martinsburg, WV
Working to get YOU the BEST Deal!

Mike, great question i didnt think anyone would really notice. My first name is Walter. Until yesterday midway through this post my Name on activerain was Walter Aaron Poling, but my clients for real estate know me by Aaron so i figured i should take out the Walter. Thanks for noticing!

Apr 23, 2009 12:01 AM #14
Raina Wells
Keller Williams Realty - Dallas, TX

I hate it when there is not a photo on the house.  You automatically think foreclosure or something is wrong with the agent.

Apr 30, 2009 10:41 AM #15
Kathryn Gorham
Green Key Realty - Emerald Isle, NC
Emerald Isle NC Crystal Coast

Yes they are all good points Mike and don't forget when you say clean up you photos - you don't mean to DOCTOR them. That is illegal to remove the "tower" in the back yard with photoshop or other program. Also your point on the number of photos; our homes and land magazine rep gave a class on internet marketing and told us that if you want to increase your interenet effectiveness by 300% just be sure to have a minimum of 6 photos.

Jun 23, 2009 11:33 PM #16
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