No Excuses - Pictures Can Make or Break A Sale

Services for Real Estate Pros with Midamerica Referral Network


Searching the Multiple Listing in Shell Knob, MO this week, I was again amazed at the just plain awful pictures that are posted!  Why would any seller not object to their home being marketed as a  dark pit?  When more than 85% of today's buyers check the internet before contacting an agent, why wouldn't you expose the best features of your listing?

Why would the listing agent not try to give his listing the edge in this tough market?  Digital cameras are such a great improvement over the old poloroids.  You can see immediately if you need to retake the kitchen view, or try for a brighter family room photo.

Here are some samples of what I saw on the MLS, and you can be sure I did not send any of these listings to my clients.

The first photo is probably an above ground pool, but you have to wonder what is wrong with the rest of the pool area - it isn't shown.  The other interior shots are basically too dark, but with a digital camera it would be known immediately.  It just boils down to NO EXCUSES.  The seller deserves our best efforts.  That's what we get paid for!




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bad pic


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Jon Budish
Resident Realty - Fort Collins, CO

You're right Joan, no excuses. Buyers really are swayed by the MLS pictures.

Feb 25, 2010 06:28 AM #1
Hope MacManus
Home Finders SVC Real Estate, Florence, OR - Florence, OR

Right on, Joan!  There are even lots of online listings on with only one photo.  I've had buyers tell me they don't even click through to read about a listing that has only one photo.  When I look for an agent to whom I can make a referral, among other things, I look to see how they market their listings on  If there's only one photo of the property and they've not got their own photo and bio up, I pass them by. 

Feb 25, 2010 06:35 AM #2
Wendy Rich-Soto, Realtor/Broker Associate
Keller Williams Realty, LA Harbor - San Pedro, CA
Owner of @ the WRichTeam

Take several and make them great showcasing and at the very least your showings will increase significantly!

Feb 25, 2010 06:37 AM #3
Li Read
Sea to Sky Premier Properties (Salt Spring) - Salt Spring Island, BC
Caring expertise...knowledge for you!

So true...I'm still a believer in getting a professional to shoot the photos.   This is a visual business world.

Feb 25, 2010 06:56 AM #4
Team GMS
Moretti Realty Century 21 - South Plainfield, NJ

With the power of the interenet and clients convinced they love or hate a home by the pictures they see..good pictures are NOT a option..Great post

Feb 25, 2010 07:15 AM #5
Joan Snodgrass
Midamerica Referral Network - Kimberling City, MO

Yes, Jon, and not only the potential buyer, but the agents looking for a match for the buyer client.

Feb 25, 2010 07:27 AM #6
Joan Snodgrass
Midamerica Referral Network - Kimberling City, MO

Hope - it sure seems ridiculous to me too.  We're allowed 12 pics on our mls, and unless it is a plain, bare lot, I will  always take at least 16 pictures in order to present the best on line.

Feb 25, 2010 07:29 AM #7
Joan Snodgrass
Midamerica Referral Network - Kimberling City, MO

Yes, Wendy.  The more showings the better the seller feels, and those showings can provide ammunition when needed to discuss price and condition changes with the seller.

Feb 25, 2010 07:31 AM #8
Tony and Libby Kelly
Keller Williams Realty Portland Premiere - Lake Oswego, OR

I completely agree.  There are too many listing out there to go see to waste your time on one that doesn't bother to provide an pertinent information.  Pictures are the most informative thing on the MLS.  Even if the house is a fixer and doesn't show that well, someone could be wanting a fixer and it is just what they were looking for... if you SHOW it to them!

Feb 26, 2010 06:06 AM #9
Lise Howe
Keller Williams Capital Properties - Washington, DC
Assoc. Broker in DC, MD, VA and attorney in DC

I had buyers last year decide which 5 houses they wanted to see based solely on the pictures on MLS - they were busy and looking for a million plus house - think of all those other houses that were passed by because the pictures were bad or non-existent!

Feb 26, 2010 03:05 PM #10
Evelyn Johnston
Friends & Neighbors Real Estate - Elkhart, IN
The People You Know, Like and Trust!

Wow Joan, those photos aren't very good.  It's just plain laziness on the part of the Real Estate Agent...

Mar 01, 2010 09:40 AM #11
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