Whatever your reasons for selling your own home, from maintaining control over the process to saving cash on an agent’s commission, once the decision is made the responsibility for marketing your property will rest squarely on your shoulders.
For this reason it is really important that independent vendors think carefully about the way in which their home will be portrayed to potential buyers, from the listing details to the accompanying images. While the seller is often best placed to describe the merits of a home with which they are familiar, capturing the appeal of a property in an image can be a bit more tricky, which is why independent vendors may wish to consider commissioning professional photography to help promote their property.
Research reveals that 90% of house hunters now head online to check out potential property purchases in the initial search stages and property marketing experts believe sellers need a minimum of 12 quality shots of their property for their listing to be competitive, so images are a hugely important part of the property marketing process.
Property photography is an art, and requires a certain skill set (and often specialist equipment) in order to show interior spaces at their best. Consider, for example, the smallest room in your home – in many cases the kitchen or bathroom. These are two rooms that often attract a large speculative investment from sellers looking to add appeal and value to their property and can certainly be a big factor in the decision making process for many buyers. Yet a quick trawl of homes for sale online reveals a large percentage of listings lacking images that accurately represent these spaces.
So why is this? Well the answer is that many sellers or their agents choose to take property photography into their own hands, but entry level camera equipment is not equipped with the wide angle lenses necessary to successfully capture small spaces like these in one shot. Even talented amateurs can struggle to create flattering images of enclosed areas, meaning that some of the most stunningly styled homes can appear lacklustre in a listing where self-shot images are used.
Of course, commissioning professional photography incurs additional cost, but sellers should look on this as an investment, easily offset by the potential for generating additional interest from the use of the images. Professional property photographers also bring more than just their equipment to each appointment; they bring their experienced eye and the insights they offer can prove invaluable. It is in a property photographer’s interest to shoot the highest quality images of your home, as no professional wants substandard shots in their portfolio. With this in mind they will often make simple suggestions to improve the look of the room for the shoot or point out anything that might be problematic in pictures.
Vendors who are going it alone to sell their home don’t have to deal with every aspect on their own, and bringing in a professional photographer is one way to lighten the load and ensure a property is well represented to an online audience.
Ben Gutierrez is the MD of property photography and marketing company Photoplan.co.uk. Photoplan can be contacted by email , followed on Twitter (@Photoplan360) or visited on Facebook.
Images copyright Photoplan