Where’s the first place potential buyers see your property?
That’s right, in a photograph.
And given the vast majority of buyers start their search for a new home online, probably with a mobile phone in one hand and a cup of tea in the other, how your property is photographed is absolutely crucial to securing a quick sale.
The photos used when preparing your house for sale really can be make or break.
So, how do you go about ensuring your house is dressed for sale and the photos get buyers salivating?
How to dress your house for sale
The best way to ensure quality photographs of your property appear on the major online portals like Rightmove, Zoopla and OnTheMarket, is to use an estate agency’s photography service.
A good agent will know how to capture your home’s best sides and ensure that buyers can’t help but book a viewing.
But there’s plenty for you to do, too, as a seller before the shutter clicks on the camera.
After all, even David Bailey would struggle to make your home look appealing if it’s full of clutter and looking the worse for wear.
The dos and don’ts of staging and photographing your home
Kerb appeal remains high on buyer wish lists and that shows no sign of changing any time soon.
So, how your home looks from the roadside is hugely important.
Before photographs are taken of your property’s exterior, make sure you do the following:
- Get those cars off the driveway
- Store any bins out of shot
- Clear the driveway of any debris or mess
- Clean windows and window frames, as well as the front door
- Jet wash the driveway
- Mow the lawn
Inside your property: The kitchen
Your kitchen is the one room of your property you really want to show off.
So, the biggest tip we can give you when preparing this room for photos that will sell your house is to declutter.
- Remove as much as you can from your kitchen worktop – you want to show off the space
- Open curtains or blinds and let light flood into your kitchen
- Take down any blackboards with your weekly shop on, or a calendar with family birthdays
- Store away any visible cleaning items like brooms and mops
- Ensure all visible appliances are clean
The living room
Your living room, like your kitchen, sits at the heart of your home.
So, it needs to be shown to its full potential.
That means, before taking photographs, that you:
- Pull back curtains and lift blinds to let the light flow into the room
- Have your photos taken on a bright day
- Take down any seasonal decorations and limit personal objects to one or two small photos
- Arrange your furniture in a way that best shows off the size of the room
- Remove any large items from your coffee table
- Straighten cushions and plump
The most important thing about your bathroom?
That it’s clean, tidy and has a real sparkle.
Bathrooms, like a kitchen, can be a huge selling point for any home, but anything less than pristine condition will show up on a professional photograph.
Be sure to:
- Clean from top to bottom, ensuring grout and tiles are wiped down and gleaming
- Remove items from shelves or atop the cistern
- If your shower curtain has seen better days, remove it
- Hang one neutral colour towel on the towel rail (if you have one)
Your bedrooms are really where you can properly stage your home.
You could even consider buying a new bedding set to really present your master bedroom in an amazing way, with extra matching cushions and pillows.
In your bedrooms, be sure to:
- Make all beds, straightening linen and pulling tight.
- Plump up pillows and cushions
- Remove items from bedside tables, apart from one lamp on each
- Clean all mirrors and dust surfaces
- If you have children, don’t be afraid to show off their rooms as kids’ rooms – but make sure they’ve tidied away toys and games before the photographer turns up
Photo tips when selling your house
It’s true that smartphone technology really has negated the need for a large camera nowadays.
But, for all the technology out there that fits in your pocket, a phone simply won’t do when taking professional photos of your property.
If you do need to take photos yourself to help with marketing your home, follow the following tips:
- Prepare your rooms as we’ve outlined in this piece
- Choose the right time of day to shoot – if you’re looking for a warm feel, shoot in the late afternoon when the sun is lower
- Never shoot the front of your property when the sun is behind it
- Invest in some professional equipment or hire a good camera and tripod – stability is key after all
If you’re looking to sell your home, Martin & Co offers a professional photographing service when marketing your property for sale.
Contact your local branch to find out more.