Preparation is Everything

Your final finished images will work overtime to help your efforts to get your property noticed.  Once all your care and preparation and the beauty of your property is captured in bright, cheerful images, potential buyers will have them at their fingertips to review again and again.  Remember the last time you may have visited one or two or maybe more properties, and later couldn't remember details and tried to recall which home had which feature?  Or possibly your home had a showing and you return to find you had forgotten to make the beds.  Take comfort knowing your great images will allow your clients to browse at their leisure and see everything at its very best.

On arrival to take your photos, we will talk about your property's best features and consider ways to make your images shine.  Normally the session will take about an hour to complete.  I will capture all living areas, balance the lighting, add fire to fireplaces, and insure your front image has an ideal blue and puffy cloud sky. A checklist that might help in preparing for your shoot could include the following:

Exteriors:  Cars parked away from front of house, garage doors closed, and yard lights on.  Check for garden hoses or other common items that may look nicer when stowed away. Check bushes and flowers along the front of the house should trimming be needed.

Interiors:  Light makes your home sparkle and can't be underrated.  All overhead lights and lamps on, and check for burned out bulbs.   Ceiling fans should be off (spinning blades look blurry in photos).  Open all curtains to let that cheerful natural light in.  Consider removing larger personal photos that will be recognizable in your images.  Buyers are easily distracted, and may be looking at images of many homes in a hurry.  Thus it is recommended that you may benefit from stowing unusual or highly colorful personal items that may attract too much attention.  This allows us to direct your buyers attention to the great features of each room. 

Kitchens and Baths:  These are the most challenging rooms.  Counters look larger when mostly clear.  It is always best during your shoot to tuck away any cleaning items such as soaps and paper towels, personal grooming items such as toothbrushes and shaving gear, lotions and shampoo bottles, and lastly minimize small appliances to show off the counters and make your spaces look wide open and inviting.  Adding a bowl of fruit, a fancy baked cake, stack of books, or fresh flowers are nice ways to add an attractive pop of color.  Fresh white towels for baths are another winning addition.

Pets:  No one loves animals more than me, but your buyers may have allergies, etc.  It is best to hide pet bowls, beds, and toys to insure those buyers do not eliminate your home from consideration.  We can usually just move those items as we go from room to room.

We may want to adjust certain items during your session where something appears distorted in the camera lens, or where something appears to distract from showcasing your room.  Your beautiful photos will attract lots of interest showing your home at it's sparkling best for potential buyers to review again and again as they make their decision.  If you are working with a real estate professional or stager, they will give great advise of prepping your property, and if any items you stow need to remain packed during the sale process, or if they need only be moved for the photo session.  Often items that are stowed for photos can be returned to their normal place in your home for your comfort and convenience after the photo session is complete.

A last note, some preparation can be simpler than you may think.  We do not normally photograph closets, hallways, attics, or garages, unless you have an unusual feature that you wish to be shown.  Additionally vacuuming and window washing is often something that will not show one way or the other.  If you have windows facing a sunny backdrop, that may warrant washing, but often the camera does not show that level of detail on glass the sun is not shining through.  I am happy to work with property owners and agents to get those final prep jobs done efficiently during the shoot, and strive to make it a low stress process for the sellers!  You will see in the final images that all the preparation will be well worth it!