Fall buying season has arrived and Charles River Park condo sellers will need to make some big decisions. Picking a Boston downtown condo real estate agent is first. After that, it would be a good idea to start thinking about who will help you stage and photograph your Boston West End condo
As a real estate agent, it’s hard for me to name just one thing that sellers MUST do before they list their home for sale. But getting professional photographs of the home is pretty high up on the list. There’s just no arguing with the facts: A well-photographed home is a home that sells more quickly, and often for more money.
Let’s make a distinction between standard, camera-phone photos, and professional photography. The pictures that most real estate agents take are simply inadequate for accurately displaying a home online. Even though high-megapixel smartphone cameras are pretty nice these days, they’re not good enough to replicate professional photography.
Professional photography isn’t just about the high-end camera, lighting, and lenses — it’s the person using the tools to make homes and outdoor spaces look their best. For example, you can expect your real estate photographer to take hundreds of photographs of your home, capturing every room from multiple angles. They will then take the time to sort through all those photos to find the best shots. They also have the editing tools to fine-tune photographs so that colors come true and glare and shadows are minimized (along with the ethical standards not to doctor a photograph to mislead buyers).
It takes multiple layers of light exposure to have a bright interior and be able to see crystal clear out the windows. This is one of the easier ways to differentiate between good and bad real estate photography or professional versus amateur.
According to a 2019 survey, only 31% of home sellers believe that professional photography is important when selling a home. So here’s a quick rundown of the data on how important it really is:
- According to the National Association of Realtors, 93% of buyers shop for homes online. They also found that, for a huge majority of online home shoppers, photographs of the home are the most valuable item in the online listing. See everything that does make a home sell in 2020 in our real estate market research article here.
- In a 2013 study, Redfin found that professionally photographed homes in the $400,000 range sold for $10,000 over list price, and in three weeks less time, compared to similar homes listed with non-professional photos.
- Another 2013 study by a real estate photography network examined all the home sales in the Chicago area for a year. They found that home sellers who hired a professional photographer sold their home 32% faster than those who did not. This cut the number of days on the market by five weeks.
It would be great to have more studies on this, especially as the dynamics of 2020 drive even more home buyers online, but we think that the results are pretty clear so far: Professionally photographed homes sell for more, in less time.
Professional real estate photography can be a big expense, but we offer it to all of our clients at no additional charge because we know that it works. In fact, professional photographs comprise the core of our comprehensive marketing package — they appear not only in the MLS and online listings but also on the home’s unique website, on listing flyers and advertisements. It’s all included when you list with us, and there are no hidden fees, just our reasonable 4.5% commission rate. Nor do we stop with professional photos, 3D home tours are standard for all of our listings as well – the new standard in real estate marketing to complement the photography.
Professional photography is an important companion to expert home staging. You know what your home looks like in person, but most buyers will be just glancing at photos online before they decide to view it themselves. Those photos should sell! Maybe not surprisingly, buyers surveyed by NAR (National Association of Realtors) voted photos as more important than price, location, or description.
I’m such a big believer in professional photography I include it as part of my comprehensive listing package Well staged and photographed homes get more views online, more shares on social media, and more offers!
Give your home the glamour treatment with tasteful staging and eye-grabbing photos. Contact me to get some great referrals to professionals I work within the Boston downtown condo area.
Is staging really that important? It depends. If you have a big vacant one or two-bedroom Charles River Park condo. I think it is. If you have a studio typically the buyer’s imagination is enough. If you are currently living in your Boston condo for sale, think an interior designer with a focus not on what you want, but what sells (what the market wants). My recommended staging a Charles River Park condo is not expensive. Consider this. According to the Real Estate Stagers’ Association, homes that are staged before they’re sold spend on average 73% less time on the market, and they typically sell for more money. When you think about it, you really can’t afford not to have a professional come in and help your home look it’s very best before you put it on the market.
I actually think that staging and getting photographs taken is one of the most fun parts of selling a Charles River Park condo. Much more fun than signing paperwork, anyway! Staging your home is like remodeling, but way less work. A professional home stager comes in with an outsider’s perspective, and sees the areas of your home that are likely to get buyers excited, and where they might need a little help seeing the potential.
If your home has been lived in, the first thing you’ll probably need to do is organize and downsize a bit, or at least move some things out. The buyers will want to see what closet space is available, and they can’t if it’s already full of stuff!
Once your home is cleared out a little, your home stager can recommend how to use the furnishings and accessories you already have to display each room in the most appealing way. Or, your home stager can take the reins for maximum effect — maybe adding a little paint, changing up some rooms, or adding strategic lighting to make a room feel bigger or cozier. I’m always stunned by how the professional home stagers I work with here in downtown Boston transform my clients’ homes from ho-hum to WOW.
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