The Crooked Picture: How Important Are Photos & How To Fix Them?

Real Estate Agent with Trademark Realty Group of Palm Coast

There have been a lot of posts in regards to property photos.  Some even post photos are are considered "bad" whether they be crooked, dark, people sleeping, closeups of closed doors, and the list goes on.  But how important are photos when it somes to advertising a property?  VERY!!  Consumer surveys show that almost 90% of buyers are using the intenret first to shop, and next reasonable questions are why and what are they geting there they can't get elsewhere?  The answers are simple, consumers are telling us that the internet and propertty listing websites allow them to get more detailed information and a better perspective of a property prior to trekking out to visit a property.  Photos are very important to the because it allows the shopper to "virtually tour" a property and can contribute to the perspective of whther they can actually picture themselves living there or not or whether it is worth their time to visit.

The challenge is that not everyone is good at taking pictures.  In some cases, it may be worthwhile hiring an experienced photographer.  In other cases it may just take some practice and education.  I like this route personally because photography can be a fun hobby.  Anyway, here some "what not's" and "what's" to do:

What Not's:

  1. Have the date and time stamp show up on the photo.  Any wording on a picture is a distraction to the focus of the image in the photo such as great scenery, relxing atmosphere, spacious, etc.
  2. Cabinet doors hanging open.  Maybe it's me, but this kind of just looks sloppy.
  3. Dimming lights trying to get some "eloquence effect".  People want to see the full room.  Ever see what people do with a dark picture?  They squint trying to look through and see what's behind the darkness.   I say, don't contribute to anyone's future blindness.
  4. Have people in the picture (especially sleeping).  Home-staging advice consistently suggests removing all personal photos an whatnot so as not to distract a buyer from being able to picture themselves living in the house.  So you don't want to put people in the marketing photos online either.
  5. As the headline suggests . . . DON'T LEAVE THE PICTURES CROOKED!  Photo editing software can be a nightmare to the unskilled, but there is almost always a simple feature that allows you to straighten the photo.

What's To Do To Get Great Pictures:

  1. Get at least an 8.0 Megapixel Digital Camera.  The benefit of higher megapixels is truer and brighter colors.  In addtion, better resolution means pictures look "fuller" instead of "flat". 
  2. Stand back and possibly . . . get up.  Room angles are tricky.  Ever find yourself crammed in a corner doing some wacky yoga-type thing trying to get the right angle.  Wide-angle lenses (for camreas with interchangeable lenses) are great in helping with this.  But another way to help is take a small ladder and take the photos shooting at a slight angle downwards and diagonally across the room.
  3. Shed some light on the subject.  Try to schedule photo-taking time in the day.  Open up those blinds/curtains too! Let the light shine in.  You will get much clearer shots. 
  4. Take away that clutter.  It's easy to want to get that listing up yesterday!  But make sure the house is in the same state as a showing before taking any photos.  
  5. Take alot of pictures.  The great thing about digital . . . DELETE!  You don't have to use all of the photos, and have a lot more to choose from. 
  6. Edit edit edit.  Every camera come with some form of basic photo editing software which allows you to brighten up a photo and straighten them out.  Cropping can also be used to take out things on edges that you didn't intent to include (i.e. the cat's tail?)

Well, have fun.  Hope this was helpful and have a great day!


8 Megapxiel, SLR Camera, Clear Sky, Some editing (straightening and cropping)

4 Megapixel camera, overcast day, some editing (straightening and cropping)

Check out the difference in the greens and blues?


Posted by

Kathleen West, Realtor
Trademark Realty Group of Palm Coast

416 South Central Ave Flagler Beach, FL  32136 | Office: (386) 446-5930 

"Bringing Real Estate to Life"

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Comments (11)

Jason Schweiger
Network Funding LP - Auburn, WA
Loan Originator / Branch Manager NFLP
The software nowadays makes it so easy to fix pics.
Oct 08, 2007 04:55 AM
Chris Pollinger
Berman & Pollinger, LLC. - San Diego, CA
Consulting for Luxury Teams and Brokerages
Great post - if we take on the mindset that everything we do is a reflection of our competence and/or character - cutting corners says a lot about us.  Thank you for the reminder!
Oct 08, 2007 05:04 AM
Joan Whitebook
BHG The Masiello Group - Nashua, NH
Consumer Focused Real Estate Services
That is a great illustration of the differences.  I think it is worth looking into investing in a new camera --
Oct 08, 2007 05:08 AM
The All Pro Team
EXIT Realty Leaders - Crystal River, FL
Right on Kathy!!  I hate it when I pull up a listing in MLS and the pics are sideways or fuzzy.  I hope everyone reads this and takes a look at there own pictures.  If you are not good at taking pictures, let someone else take them for you.  Great blog!
Oct 08, 2007 07:14 AM
Shane Leady
Apella Business Solutions - Zolfo Springs, FL


Thanks for the post.  This is a great one for me as the running joke in the office is "Send Anyone But" you guessed it me to take a picture.  Pic's are my... um little weak area.  Thanks again!

Oct 08, 2007 12:58 PM
Monika McGillicuddy
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Verani Realty - Hampstead, NH
Southern NH & the Seacoast Area
I need to learn photo shop. I take pretty good pictures but would still benefit from some tweaking.
Oct 09, 2007 02:56 PM
Tchaka Owen
Galleria International Realty - Hollywood, FL
Kathy, I think you cheated.  You got them to turn on the fountains for the 'after' picture, didn't you?  ;-)
Oct 09, 2007 06:44 PM
Kathleen West
Trademark Realty Group of Palm Coast - Palm Coast, FL
Flagler County & Palm Coast Realtor


There's a footswithc.  You caught me. 

Oct 10, 2007 12:56 PM
Tchaka Owen
Galleria International Realty - Hollywood, FL
Kathy, pardon my ignorance.....what's a footswithc?  
Oct 19, 2007 04:09 PM
Kathleen West
Trademark Realty Group of Palm Coast - Palm Coast, FL
Flagler County & Palm Coast Realtor
Meant "foot-switch" actually. lol
Oct 20, 2007 05:20 PM
Tchaka Owen
Galleria International Realty - Hollywood, FL
I wouldn't have figured it out.  I thought it was some East European device I'd never heard of before!
Oct 20, 2007 06:16 PM