Why Would Someone Take Pictures of My House?

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Cam Realty and Property Management

Why Would Someone Take Pictures of My House?

One of the homeowners I spoke to couple of weeks ago called me this morningWhy Would Someone Take Pictures of My House very concerned as she saw someone stop in front of her house to take several photos, then drove off. She wanted to know if I knew why and who!

I can come up with a long list of reasons why someone would take pictures of your house but there’s no way I know for sure why. Should you be concerned? I really don’t know your situation so I can’t answer that but here are some reasons why someone might be taking pictures of your house;

-Insurance Purposes: Insurance companies do request photos of the properties they insure from time to time for different reasons, could be as simple as to have a photo of your house for their files.
-Disability and/or personal injury claims
-Refinance: Lenders do order drive by photos in order to complete your file.
-Short Sale: If your house is listed for short sale, banks might have ordered a drive-by BPO which requires exterior photos of your house.
-Foreclosure: Again, lenders do order exterior BPO’s during/before they file for foreclosure.
-Contractors doing work in the neighborhood: Perhaps one of your neighbors truly like a feature of your home and would like to duplicate it and the contractor they hired is simply taking photos of your house.
-Appraisal: Appraisers do actually go out and take photos of recently sold/active/pending sales if they’re not available in MLS.
-Loan Modification: If you’ve applied for a loan modification, lender must evaluate the condition of the house as well as recent sold and active comparable listings before they agree to it.

If it was your Lender who ordered the photos of your house, they most likely requested a front, address and side photos as well as the street scene.

I can’t answer they “why” as only you know your situation and after reading this list of reasons, you probably can answer that question. If none of them fits you, then perhaps it was someone who really liked your house and would like to duplicate some or all of the features in their house plans.

If you are looking to buy or sell your home in Clermont, Minneola, Groveland, Winter Garden and Windermere FL areas, I would love to speak with you. Call or text me at 407-929-1852, email bethatalay@gmail.com or visit www.WhereToLiveInOrlando.com

Why Would Someone Take Pictures of My House?

Photo Credit to Fotolia


Comments (27)

Sybil Campbell
Fernandina Beach, FL
Referral Agent Amelia Island Florida

Beth Atalay, All of those are valid reasons why someone would be taking picture of someone's house, but it could still be unnerving!

Dec 23, 2015 09:24 AM
Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

I live on a street where there are several homes with reverse mortgages.  I notice cars driving by and taking pictures all the time.  I suspect it's the managers of those loans doing it!

Dec 23, 2015 11:20 AM
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

How about a buyer who wanted to let his agent know this is the house I want to buy NOW??:), Endre

Dec 23, 2015 02:50 PM
Joe Petrowsky
Mortgage Consultant, Right Trac Financial Group, Inc. NMLS # 2709 - Manchester, CT
Your Mortgage Consultant for Life

Good morning Beth. I'm sure it can be a bit disconcerting, but it happens for many of the reasons you mentioned. I had it happened at our home this summer, I happen to be on our deck and waved.

Dec 23, 2015 07:21 PM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hi Beth - and sometimes it's just because they like some(or all) aspect of your home.   This is a question I have been asked before as well -- I like your comprehensive list.

Dec 24, 2015 12:07 AM
Andrew Mooers | 207.532.6573
Northern Maine Real Estate-Aroostook County Broker

My dad was a real estate appraiser and was taking an image of a comp for an appraisal report he was working on.

A guy with no shirt on hung out the top story and shouted you wait there.  He came down to ground level, wanted the picture because he was messing around, playing footsie with the tenant in the duplex upstairs. Did not want his car parked out front as future evidence if a divorce happened. Not the purpose of why the image was being taken. That is private eye stuff.

Dec 24, 2015 12:23 AM
Amanda S. Davidson
Amanda Davidson Real Estate Group Brokered By eXp Realty - Alexandria, VA
Alexandria Virginia Homes For Sale

Beth, this is a great list. I do take photos of homes I like and sometimes I'll use them for photos on my blog. Have a very Merry Christmas!

Dec 24, 2015 12:40 AM
Debbie Reynolds, C21 Platinum Properties
Platinum Properties- (931)771-9070 - Clarksville, TN
The Dedicated Clarksville TN Realtor-(931)320-6730

I was taking photos of a house for a bank and the homeowner came out and jumped in his car and followed me. I thought he was crazy so went to the local fire department (very public place) and stopped. He got out of his car and asked why was I taking photos and I told him I was being paid to do it by his bank and he should check with them. He grumbled and drove off.

Dec 24, 2015 06:04 AM
John Novak
Keller Williams Realty The Marketplace - Las Vegas, NV
Henderson, Las Vegas and Summerlin Real Estate

I take a lot of neighborhood photos to use in blogging and online marketing. Generally I try to include a broader view instead of just one home. Very rarely will someone ask what I'm doing, and they've always been understanding.

Dec 24, 2015 09:07 AM
Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

Beth, I have seen a few appraisers out taking photos.  I have taken photos too for a blog or a video. 

Dec 24, 2015 09:55 PM
Debbie Reynolds, C21 Platinum Properties
Platinum Properties- (931)771-9070 - Clarksville, TN
The Dedicated Clarksville TN Realtor-(931)320-6730

Hi Beth, Merry Christmas and hope you had a wonderful day.

Dec 25, 2015 12:31 PM
Noah Seidenberg
Coldwell Banker - Evanston, IL
Chicagoland and Suburbs (800) 858-7917

Thank goodness it will be very soon

Dec 25, 2015 02:09 PM
Certified Mobile Notary Signing Agent - Smith Mountain Lake, VA
Highest Ranked Certified Mobile Notary in Virginia

HOAs also take photos of homes when investigating complaints Beth Atalay to prove or disprove allegations 

Dec 26, 2015 06:09 PM
Nick T Pappas
Assoc. Broker/Broker ABR, CRS, SFR, e-Pro, @Homes Realty Group, @HomesBirmingham & Providence Property Mgmnt, LLC Hun... - Huntsville, AL
Madison & Huntsville Alabama Real Estate Resource

Beth, I often take photos of a house or neighborhood street before/after a listing appointment, when an out of town client wants to see a particular neighborhood or when I need a photo for a blog post. I've been questioned many times after the fact.

Dec 27, 2015 02:35 AM
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


This is an excellent and comprehensive list...Security concerns are at an all time high these days, and many get reactive...A

Dec 28, 2015 06:24 AM
Ed Silva
Mapleridge Realty, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

I recently stopped to take photos of the exterior of 2 houses for a former resident that had relocated to CA some years ago and was curious as to what the homes looked like now

Dec 28, 2015 12:23 PM
Teresa b

Is it ok for someone to take pictures of your home by walking rite up to your front door window and then walk away

Oct 22, 2018 07:54 PM

Sometimes it's simply a former tenant of the property that wants to travel down memory lane to see how much the property has changed throughout the years.

Feb 20, 2019 01:52 PM
Scott Miller

People assume the worst if they see you taking a photo of their house. I've been an appraiser for over thirty years,and most people are ok once you explain what your doing. Original photos, not MLS copy and paste photos are required by lenders.

Apr 18, 2020 08:00 AM
Paula S Abell

I've seen 2 diff vehicles on at least 4 occasions parked across the street from my house . 2 occasions they took a pic . Were in no financial worry . Not refinancing. Moved here abt 8 months ago and noticed it soon after . Same 2 persons driving same vehicles .

Jun 04, 2020 07:42 PM