In Real Estate, A Picture Is Not Worth An Extra Thousand Dollars Or More

By Renee Porsia

I recently read a disturbing article that tells homeowners if they want to get a higher price for their home, they need to take better quality photos. This is just the type of preposterous nonsense that makes homeowners have unrealistic expectations. And worse yet, they are hearing it from supposed professionals in the business.

Listen up, taking better quality photos will not get homeowners a higher price no matter what anyone tells you. In fact this type of nonsensical recommendation makes Realtors look like complete morons. Also, just to be clear, staging a home, repainting a home, hanging a plant, pictures, or putting a fake family in a home will not get you a higher price either. Sure, a homeowner can give the home better curb appeal, brighten or spruce the place up, make the place desirable but after all, the new homeowner is going to move in and make the place their own by making their own changes or improvements.

This article which by the way was featured in the Wall Street Journal goes on to say “listings with better photos command higher asking prices.” Tell this to the appraiser who is appraising the property. See if he/she cares about the type of photos that were taken of the home when they are putting a value on the home. This author wants us to believe that if two identical homes were on the market in the same area, the home that boasts better quality photos can ask for a higher price? Get real! What’s more get a clue and then get your real estate license, list some properties and then come back and tell me that “better quality” photos got your clients higher prices.

Now, don’t misunderstand what I am saying here. Having great photos of a home will certainly attract more attention to the home. It’s not the type of camera that will attract the attention though, it’s what is in the photos. I’ve seen amazing homes that had horrible Realtors who then took horrible photos of the home which then probably coupled with an unrealistic asking price contributed to the home sitting on the market longer than it should have been. Leaving the toilet seat up, having food and dirty dishes all over the kitchen, toys scattered all over the house, dirty clothes on the floor or on beds and then taking photos without cleaning all that mess up even in the most amazing of homes is going to detract attention away from the home not attract. It’s called common sense people.

All the nice photos in the world are not going to have any effect on the selling price of your home, believe it or choose not to believe it. Put yourself in a buyer’s shoes and if you were buying a home, would you pay more for a home just because it had really nice photos? Imagine the Realtor saying to you the buyer, “the asking price is $399k but I think you should offer $420k. After all, look at all the nice photos.” Aack!

At the end of the day, great photos can help in selling a home but they categorically will not get anyone anymore money. The faster everyone stops listening to all of this idiocy the better off we will all be.

Renee Porsia is an expert associate broker with RE/MAX Action Realty and published author.


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