After two and a half years of doing real estate photography full time, I've seen it all! From the messy home, house full of kids and pets, staged homes, empty homes and much more. Often times when I arrive at a home the questions asked are, does this look okay? should I move this? You can photoshop that out, right?!
You and your clients have worked so hard to prepare the home, lets add the finishing touches to prepare for photos. Below is a list of the top 20 things you and your clients can do to prepare your home for its big photoshoot!
1. Light up the home
Turn on all interior lights and lamps, make sure to replace any burnt out lightbulbs. Also, turn on the fireplace if possible. I can always add a fire in Photoshop if needed.
2. Open all blinds and curtains
We want your home to look as light and bright as possible. Let it all in by opening all blinds and curtains.
Less is more in real estate photos. Clear off all countertops, night stands, entry tables, mantels and coffee tables. Only leaving a few decorative items. Be sure to remove all knife blocks, utencil holders and mail from the kitchen. Leaving only one small appliance on the counter. Clear everything off the top and front of the refrigerator. Also, remove all garbage cans from the kitchen. For the Mantel leave a maximum of five decorative pieces including artwork. Put away all vacuum cleaners, dog bowls, coats, shoes and extras laying around. Remember, less is more!
4. Remove all family photos
When selling your home, you want the potential buyers to see the home as theirs. When they see a photo of you and your adorable family, they see it as someone else's home. We want them to make an emotional connection to the home and to picture themselves living there.
5. Set the stage
Staging a home is said to increase the sale price by 17%!! Yes, 17%!! Staging a home showcases its full potential. Below are two of my favorite stagers in the Seattle area. Click below for more info on these fantastic women owned businesses.
6. Add fresh flowers
Fresh flowers bring the home to life! They're beautiful, they add color and texture. They make your home feel more inviting. Local farmers markets and florists can provide you with some exceptional options.
7. Turn it off
Turn off all computer screens, TV's and ceiling fans.
8. Remove small rugs to reveal the floor
Potential buyers want to see what the floor looks like, don't hide it under a rug.
Those fresh vacuum lines look so good in photos!
10. Make the bed
Make the bed and fluff the pillows. Make sure you press the bedskirt.
11. Put toys away, inside and out
Put toys away, up and off the floor and tucked under the bed so knowone can see them. Don't forget about the toys outside!
12. Remove empty planters
13. Remove cars from driveway
Move your cars, trucks and trailers out of the driveway and away from the house.
14. Remove garbage/recycle bins from exterior
15. Remove and put away the water hose
16. Mow the lawn and touch up landscaping
The first photo usually listed and seen on the MLS is the front of the house. This is the first impression buyers will get of your home. Entice them with clean and tidy landscaping, a fresh coat of paint and add some planters with fresh flowers for a pop of color.
17. Clean out the basement
Clear out the cobwebs and tidy up. You want to open the potential buyers minds to the possibility of this being usable space, not a scary dungeon.
18. Take the cover off the BBQ
19. Wash the windows
Wash the windows inside and out to show off the views.
20. Vacate the premises
Please take any pets out of the home or put them in a crate/room. I love pets, but photobombing is not encouraged, lol.